Fixed Volume versus Device Volume

Hi all and thank you for taking the time to read my post.

I recently purchased a brand new Bluesound Node2i for my old ROTEL HiFi System (Rotel RA-03 + RCD-02 + RB 06 + RT-06) with B&W 603 S3 Floor Speakers. I use ROON on my 5,1 MacPro 12 Core (1TB SSD + 128GB RAM) and my iPad Pro 12.9" as the controller. I have my Bluesound Node2i setup at 100% Volume with Fixed Volume selected… this means that when I turn the volume dial on my Rotel Amp I can really feel that power of the 100% sound early on as I raise the volume dial… my question is… is having the Bluesound Node2i setup at 100% Volume with Fixed Volume selected the correct method… or should I have it at 50% or little higher and then increase the volume on my Roon Controller App on my iPad Pro. I do find the sound can be very powerful sounding at low Rotel Volume Nob levels…?

Is there a correct way to this… and does having the Bluesound Node2i setup at 100% Volume with Fixed Volume affect the sound quality and clarity from my Rotel HiFi System ?

I’m using TIDAL as my source for my music.

Any comments or suggestions most welcome.

Regards,
Anthony

Hi,
I also use The Bluesound Node2i on fixed volume, same as the DAC after it and change the volume with my preamp.
My setup :
Bluesound Node 2i connected to a Cambridge Audio Azur 851D (2016)
speakers : B&W 804 (1992)
amplifier : Rotel RB-1080 (2007)
preamplifier : Rotel RC-1070 (2007)
Turntable : Rega RP6 (2017)

kr
Patrick

1 Like

Hi Patrick… thank you so much for that reply and input. I was just afraid that having the Bluesound Node 2i set to 100% Maxed Out Volume on ROON was maybe effecting how my main Rotel Amp performed at low settings and more worrying, higher levels… as with this setting… I’m noticing I’m listening on much lower volume knob levels on my Rotel Amp compared to when I used my previous ARCAM irDAC and NO ROON setup.

So you reckon what I’m doing is fine… cause I now find that if I do pump up the volume knob on my Rotel Amp, it’s so much louder than it would have been with my previous ARCAM irDAC with NO ROON setup.

Nice to see you are like me… old hardware still delivering a great sound using more modern add-ons… :slight_smile:

Best regards,
Anthony

Hi Anthony,
I did the same in the past with my SONOS connect.
I cannot deny it, maybe I’m a little old fashioned but I like to control the volume with my preamp, I still play records also, nothing as satisfying as an LP with big nice pictures, a scratch once in a while and the “annoyance” to turn the LP after 20 min.
But it is also a manor to be “part” of the music experience. :grinning:

kr
Patrick

Hello @Anthony_McCarthy,

Good audio hygiene would suggest that you should insert volume control as late in the Signal Path as possible before amplification. With your setup, that would entail setting the Bluesound Node 2i to “Fixed” volume mode and using the attenuation on your Rotel.

If you are looking to reduce the frequency that you have to use the Rotel controls, I would suggest using Roon’s “Volume Leveling” feature. You can read more about it here:

https://kb.roonlabs.com/Volume_Leveling

-John

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