Considering Roon - hardware questions

I have been using the Synology DS216play NAS for my music files (all FLAC) to play through my Sonos system. I’m still in the process of ripping and have hit the Sonos limit on tracks so am considering Roon, and I like what I see. I currently have about 4000 classical music albums, on the way to about 5500 when done.

I do not want to install Roon on my Windows PC, since I don’t want to rely on that being powered up to play music. I see that I need a Roon core (server?) but I think my DS216play is underpowered for that in its present configuration. I only have 1GB RAM. I see on the Synology site that I can increase to 4GB or 8GB, so that looks solvable. I also own at least four 128GB SSD’s and have a free port on the DS216play. Would that be an adequate configuration for Roon?

I’m willing to buy separate hardware to support the Roon core, but if that’s the preferred approach, I’d appreciate some guidance on what to purchase. Thanks @support.

That NAS has an ARM processor and it needs to be an Intel so it won’t work.

There are a number of options available to you depending whether you want to buy something that is essentially plug and play or if you are happy to do some DIY.

Do this. Don’t run Roon on your NAS (never mind your specific model has an incompatible CPU, don’t replace the NAS with one that does). Get a NUC, instead. An i3 is probably fine, unless you plan to do do a lot of heavily upsampling and/or room correction/convolution DSP. And it should be fairly cheap. There are LOTS of threads in the forums here about the various NUC options, so I suggest you do a little reading of the existing discussions and then maybe follow up if you still have questions…

The statement above is one man’s opinion. I for one have my Core running on a QNAP TVS-471 and have never had a day of trouble in two plus years. Again, one man’s opinion but I am not telling you what not to do. I am telling you how successful I have been doing it this way.

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Same here, no trouble. I bought this before ROCK was a thing for a NUC. Anyway, trouble free with an i3 processor. I don’t use DSP as I don’t need to with My Meridian 218/DSP5200SEs and `Bluesound zones. It all just works. MQA sounds great too (Couldn’t resist)

Thanks for the suggestions. I’ll look into NUC and the QNAP TVS-471.

Plug and play would be great, but I’m not averse to tech stuff. I’m a retired IT person, but I’d rather spend time on the music itself than the tech stuff if possible.

Hello @Stephen_Vorenberg,

If you’re looking for plug-and-play functionality I would suggest taking a look at our Nucleus line of products or getting another dedicated Roon Core from one of our partners listed at the end of this page, SonicTransporters, Innous & Antipodes are fairly popular on this forum.

If you want to look into building your own ROCK (NUC) based server, I would suggest taking a look at our ROCK Documentation and Suggested Hardware.


Stephen, my guess is that, despite the requirements, pretty much any 64-bit Intel processor will do. I started with a 2010 Core 2 Duo Mac Mini running Ubuntu, and though slow, it worked fine. Others have reported success with extremely minimal systems. But they are slow – it would take half an hour or longer to add a new album on my Mini, whereas with my latest system it’s less than a minute. It should be a machine that can stay on all the time. Browse the forum a bit, you’ll see lots of clever ideas.

@Stephen_Vorenberg Have a look here
the hardware - the NUC7i3BNH plus 4 GB Ram plus an SSD is probably the cheapest and easiest option, especially when you install ROCK.
These are the components I bought, putting the hardware together takes maybe 10 Minutes and is extremely easy, then just install Rock and that is it. I run Win 10 because I also want other stuff running on the NUC.
If I were you I would not buy a new NAS, just keep yours. Don’t be put off by having to put the stuff together, if you played with Lego as a kid, you can do it.

Thanks for all your suggestions. I decided on a NUC7i7BNH with 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD, ordered from Amazon and due to arrive Friday. I’m looking forward to learning more as I go.

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