Does Roon modify FLAC on Export

Core Machine
i7, 32g of RAM, WIN10 64, 1Tb SSD.

Network Details
Hard wired Gig network, PepLink balance 30-- Netgear switches, Synology DS418 NAS.

Audio Devices
Scarlett Solom USB.

Library Size
100K tracks and FLAC, all on NAS, All ripped from original CDs and tagged in same format. No other content is in our collection. NO WEB content, NO paid streaming content.

Description of Issue

We use our system to search our large collection to build Playlists for research or 60s and 70 Album Rock.

Over the weekend we use the Roon Export feature to export a file play in the office. We noticed that Roon had added something to our FLAC file because it was a little larger than our source FLAC on our NAS.

We also noticed that some of the tags were gone, But the big issue is the exported FLAC would no longer load load or play on our FLAC player.

ERROR MESSAGE: Error Loading Audio, The selected file could not be decoded.

The same FLAC file from our NAS, but not exported via Roon loaded and played with all tags.

Hello @John_Stephens,

Thank you very much for getting in touch when running into an issue. I am very sorry about the trouble and that we’ve missed your post for this long :pleading_face:

Just to make sure we understand correctly what the issue is, I’ll go over the process as I understood it: you export a Roon playlist to an Excel file. When you play those tracks in the office, where are the files actually located? On the same NAS? What are you using to play the files - Roon?

Is your FLAC player connected to Roon?

I’m sorry if I missed anything, could yo uplease let me know? We would love to help resolve this :pray:

We are using the Roon different that most people. We have a very large library of music, all of which was ripped into FLAC. All of the FLAC files live on a Synology NAS. They are on the NAS only for protection of the large collection. While the NAS is on our network, only I can access.

Using Roon I will search for a song or songs that make a creative point like Clapton played on both songs, but in very different styles. If I like both songs, I will manually export it using the tool on the Roon interface to the C drive on the Roon computer.

I will export the song with no intended change in the FLAC file. If I take the exported song and just play it with a Win 10 player, it plays fine. When I play the file in our Playout system, the file is rejected and won’t play.

If instead I retrieved the same file directly from the NAS myself and copied it to both the Roon computer and our Playout computer the file played fine in every player I tested.

The strangest thing I noticed is the FLAC file I exported from the NAS with Noon was slightly larger as if some code was added. No idea what that is.

Both computers are on the same network. No Excel file is created. The files are exported one by one. The exported file is on a local drive and it played that way.

Non of this involves any music service. They were all ripped from our CDs.

As it states in the Help portal article on the Export function:

Common reasons for using Export include:

  1. Copying files so you can take them with you, such as to your laptop for a vacation
  2. To make a copy of your library tagged with Roon metadata
  3. To export a spreadsheet for cataloging your library

Roon is including basic ID3 metadata into the files if it does not already exist in the source files.

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I’m sure I tested this export feature once just to see what it did. I recall it replaced all the file metadata with a basic set? Might be remembering wrong though.
Regardless of that it shouldn’t break the FLAC file for playback. Might help if we knew what FLAC player was unable to play the files?

You could be right - I’ve only tested Export with files that had no ID3 metadata in them at all. I feel a test coming on…


I may have figured it out. The source file seemed to work fine. The source was a very old recording with no tags. The Roon export was larger because Roon added tags. But something about trying to upgrade the old tags produced a file my FLAC player could not handle.


I tried some much newer FLAC files and still the ROON export was much larger. But the resulting FLAC file worked everwere I tried it. It could not read the additional tags Roon added, but the file played and the basic tags were fine.

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Hey @John_Stephensey,

Thank you for so kindly explaining the creative way you are using Roon - we always love to find out how Roon meets all these different needs :heart_eyes:

I appreciate your efforts in finding a solution to the issue you’ve ran into and thank you @Geoff_Coupe for the insightful post :pray:

@John_Stephens, would you still want me to loop in our technical team to help with the finer details of the export?

Thank you Rebeka. I am a bit embarrassed that I did not test some more files before I asked for help. I think I have the export down now. But you likely have not heard the last from me about Meta Data. That is so important to the way we use Roon.

No reason to be embarrassed at all! Sometimes when we are too close to things, we see no way out :nerd_face:

I’m really glad you’ve engaged in conversation with us and with the Roon community. It’s one of the things we enjoy the most :heart_eyes:

We’ll be in touch, of course :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes: