Decommissioning Mac Mini: What to do about Roon Core?

I’m thinking about retiring my Mac Mini and replacing it with a music streamer but I need to know what the best approach is towards moving the Roon Core. The conventional wisdom is that the Core needs to be separate from any computer used for the roon player app, but I’ve noticed a comment here and there that this doesn’t really matter all that much.
What’s the reasoning behind the separate Core advice: is it a matter of functionality or sound quality? I can’t say I’ve noticed any difference in either when I’ve tried playing music direct from the Mini.
Can I move the Core to my desk computer and use the player app also installed on it, or should I change my habits and use an iPad or a currently dormant MacBook Pro as a player (there’s probably some inconvenience with either of these given the other junk on the desk, but I suppose I can learn to live with it).
Does a Roon Ready streamer or bridge make a difference to any compromise in where the Core is housed? I can’t see that it would but it’s probably worth asking.
All advice appreciated, other than about the Roon Nucleus thing since I don’t really want to stretch that far for a device limited to one music program.

Do you feel the need to have a separate streamer? If you hadn’t before, what makes you think you would need it now? Are you thinking about upgrading your music system?

It’s more about thinking of ways to rationalise my current system. The Mini isn’t quite on its last legs but I need to start looking at potential medium to long term solutions if it does fall over. Its antenna failed a long time ago and one small problem I have is the number of cables growing behind our audio/video stuff.
The obvious replacement is a new Mini but I’d be buying a whole lot of computer functionality for the one task. My other concern is the fan: not the noise, but with the current Mini I routinely have to remove the cover and blow lots of dust off the fan and from around it. It’s about where we live (in the country, in Oz) and something hermetically sealed/fanless might be more convenient as a longer term option.

Simple answer is to get an Intel NUC and install Roon Rock on it. This will be your Roon Core. If you ever need to use it for something else, you can install Windows or Linux on it and use it for whatever you want.

The reasoning behind using a separate core device is to get your music and core away from a “noisy” computer that is constantly doing other things. Having the core on its own mini computer gives you a device that is much more efficient and is only focused on one thing, which is playing music. The reasoning for putting it in another room is that you want to get the computer away from your stereo system to keep it away from all the electronic interference that those devices emit. Also, keeping it in another room keeps you from hearing the fan when it kicks on or the spinning hard drives. With fan-less cases and SSD storage, those issues are eliminated.

You can certainly put your core on your desktop and play music from there. Since you will be streaming this music to the streamer over ethernet, there will be no noise from the computer (in theory). If the core is on your desktop, using an iPad or laptop to control the music is not going to make any difference in sound quality since the music will still be streamed from your desktop over the network. That would be for convince only.

In theory, all streamers should sound exactly the same because they are receiving the exact same data from your network and sending that data to a USB output of the streamer. Since the USB output will be from a low noise streamer, you don’t need to worry about noise. In reality, a lot of people find that different streamers sound different from one another while others don’t.

As I mentioned above you can easily build your own version by using an Intel NUC and putting it into a fan-less case. A lot of companies will build you this and it will be much cheaper than the Nucleus. A good example are products from Small Green Computer Music Servers – Small Green Computer

The new M1 Mac minis are another inexpensive option

I hopes this helps

Thanks for the careful and thorough reply.
To be honest I haven’t given NUCs a great deal of though since we are, for our sins, an all-Apple household. I want to continue with access to Audirvana and Amarra just in case and although there probably isn’t any problem with integrating Windows versions of these on a NUC with the rest of the network, I also didn’t want to be the one to discover that it takes hours to set up or requires constant resetting. Call it laziness but if I’m going with a new headless computer a Mac Mini is the line of by far the least resistance. I don’t find the current Mini (in which I’ve installed an SSD) noisy at all even though it’s not all that far from the amp.
It’s this bit in what you say, though, that is probably the most important issue at the moment:

“If the core is on your desktop, using an iPad or laptop to control the music is not going to make any difference in sound quality since the music will still be streamed from your desktop over the network.”

As I mentioned in the OP I’ve seen this said a few times. What it opens up for me is the possibility of actually needing neither a Min/NUC nor a streamer … assuming, of course, that Hegel ever get their act together and finalise Roon readiness for their amps, in which case having an iMac and H190 on the same ethernet network could well be sufficient.
The fact that Hegel are still faffing around with Roon readiness and continue to offer nothing but ambiguous and indeterminate excuses/timeframes has me starting to believe that they’ll never get it done or, if they do, will decide to apply it only to future models or the top of the line. Hence the need to cast around for streaming alternatives, just in case.
On the other hand, there’s the small problem that the official version of where a Roon Core should reside looks like it contradicts your confidence in using a desktop computer as both Core and player. This is something asserted by Roon (not only confidently but authoritatively) but I’m unable to find where they’ve explained why this is so and what effects it has. It would be nice if someone from the company could point me in the right direction.