DSD256/512 playback issues - Roon Server on NUC to MicroRendu

Hi all, pardon my ignorance, but I am having some serious issues getting DSD256/512 playback via Roon and MicroRendu over my network.

My setup is Intel Skull Canyon NUC with Roon Core. I have a PC in my upstairs office running Roon bridge. I have Comcast 250 Mbs internet, CAT 6 Ethernet cables connecting to my MR and other devices. My DACs are Mytek Brooklyn and iFi iDSD Black Label. Music is on a Western Digital My Cloud NAS connected to my network via CAT6 cable.

I am able to play DSD256 to my Brooklyn DAC via Roon/HQPlayer and DSD512 to my iDSD Black Label, also via Roon/HQPlayer through a USB cable connected to my Intel NUC. When I try playing DSD256 through the MR I get skipping and network errors in Roon, and I can’t play DSD512 through the iDSD Black Label at all.
I would think with as much bandwidth as I have, and the i7 quad core CPU, that I wouldn’t have any issues playing files with the MR.

I am reading here that a lot of people have had success running Roon Server and then using iPhone/iPad as the remote.

My questions are:

Will this benefit my setup, how do I do this, and since I also use my NUC for email, etc. will the fact that it will be “headless” render it useless for those scenarios?

Also, the instructions on how to set up Roon Server and Roon Remote are a little confusing to me. Does anyone have step-by-step instructions?

No one has replied so far, so I can get you started, if you want. I can’t address mREndu as I don’t have one, but it seems like some parms in the unit need to be massaged , so to speak.

To set up Roon Server on your core machine, simply download and install. I don’t think it will buy you anything if you are currently running the full Roon package on your core machine. Roon server is just that, but without control capabilities. If you use only Roon Server on your core machine and only Roon bridge on the NUC you are using as an endpoint, then you definitely need Roon Remote to control Roon, as neither of those other installs can do that.

You can get Roon Remote from the iOS/Android app store. Be advise that there may be problems with the display of Roon Remote under Android, at least there are on my Fire tablet.

Not sure where your confusion is, but if it still exists add a post that is more specific and I’ll try to help.

It occurs to me, after I wrote the above, to ask - Are you connecting mRendu to the ethernet port on the PC endpoint in your office?

Could be a network problem of some kind. Network problems are amplified at higher bit rates.

Are both the microRendu and server connected directly to your router using Ethernet cables?

Make sure your microRendu is running the latest software.

Try using different cables and different ports on your router.

Try updating the firmware in your router.

Did you contact Sonore for support?

Probable shouldn’t connect to router ports if he can help it, as these are notorious crap. Could be a problem; better to a switch.

I have actually seen more problems with adding switches then using only routers directly.

The more gear you use the more places for problems to happen.

Almost all the tech support calls we get are related to problems with the customers network.

They are connected to a Gigabit switch, which is connected to my router.

For the purposes of troubleshooting the problem though, I would recommend you try what Andrew recommends and connect them all to the router (temporarily, just for troubleshooting).

Thanks for the responses. I think I’m getting closer to figuring this thing out. I installed Roon Server on my NUC, Roon Remote on my iPhone, and Roon Core on my upstairs PC. I was able to get DSD256 to work pretty well with my Mytek Brooklyn, although streaming Tidal through Roon is still problematic. Music that is stored on my NAS seems to work fairly well, with occasional dropouts or stuttering. It is much less pronounced now than it was before. Before installing Roon Server, I would maybe get 1-2 seconds on Tidal and maybe 15 seconds on files on my NAS before dropouts.

Based on my experience last night, I am going to try playing around with settings in Roon as it seemed like the dropouts were mostly coming during very large swings in dynamic range. Maybe that will also help with the Tidal streaming and getting me all the way to DSD12 with the iDSD Black Label.

Hi Andrew, thanks for the response. I definitely noticed issues at higher bit rates. Both the microRendu and NAS are connected to a Gigabit switch using CAT6 cable. I switched out cables and ports on the switch and router that the switch is connected too and that didn’t work. The switch and router firmware is up to date. Installing Roon Server has gotten me most of the way there. Still some tweaking to do in Roon.

I did contact Sonore support and Jesus was very helpful.

Thanks for your help. I was able to get Roon Server set up with no issues whatsoever and I can almost consistently get DSD256 to work.

The microRendu is connected to a port on my Gigabit switch. The office PC is connected to an RJ45 wall jack with CAT6 cable.

Ok good to hear you have it working.

I don’t understand. Roon Server and Roon core are usually meant to mean the same thing. Did you mean Roon Bridge in one of the above?

There’s still something wrong with your setup. Running Roon Server instead of the full Roon package shouldn’t have made any difference.

My most humble endpoint is Roon core—>network swirtch—>RPi3—>iFi iDAC2. I always get DSD256, both native and upsampled, without any problem.

Don’t settle. Your system is capable of more.

I was under the impression that Roon Server (headless) was different from Roon Core. In any event, installing Roon Server on my NUC has allowed me to consistently get DSD256, even from Tidal, after tweaking with the headroom setting in the DSP Engine. I may try playing around with installing Roon Bridge on my office PC and Roon Core on my NUC, with the same DSP Engine settings to see if that works.

Roon core is the main thing. The full Roon package contains core+control+output. Roon Server contains core+output.

But whatever, have a good life.:neutral_face:

Thanks, Slim. I appreciate your help.

I had a similar experience with my i5-based Mac mini. I think that when you’re a bit constrained in terms of computing resources (especially with respect to DSP) running Roon Server instead of Roon Core can make a difference, since Roon Server isn’t doing any of the graphics-related stuff.

Roon Server contains Roon’s core. At least, that’s what the download page indicates. Roon’s control is responsible for graphics, etc. No?

And yes, the i5 Mini is incapable of many things. I know, I have one.

Mostly no — it’s the other way around. This is a little confusing, because the Roon folks instituted some terminology changes along the way, but originally, “Roon Core” was used to refer to what’s now called “Roon” on the download page. If it makes it easier, change the quote in question to “… Roon Server instead of Roon ….”

I’m sure that’s true, but my mid-2011 Mac mini lets me upsample all source material in Roon to DSD256, and for right now, that’s what I need it to do. No drop-outs, no stuttering, no crashes. (Knock on wood.)

Gotcha. When people use ‘Roon Core’ they really mean ‘Roon’ (the full package - core+control+output) because that is at the ‘core’ of Roon’s functionality and not a supplemental, i.e. Roon Server, Roon Remote, Roon Bridge. I guess the OP was using ‘Roon Core’ in that sense.

It’s misleading because ‘Roon Core’ as an entity is not mentioned on download page or anywhere on the website.

I entered the fray after Roon changed the terminology, so for me, ‘Roon Core’ is just a misleading obsolete label.

But tomato - tomoto, I suppose.

BTW - It’s my understanding that the 2014 i5 Mini is a great leap backward. Wish I had a 2011Mini.


Not really recommending this, but it looks like you could pick one up on eBay for ~US$300.