Going for Roon - advise needed

Hi everyone,

Just starting using Roon recently. I’ve used Volumio for a while and it’s great, but does have a few flaws that made me want to experiment something else. Roon does solve the problems I had with Volumio and the all the other things Roon has, turned my experienced quite better.

So right now, since I’m testing, I’m using my daily computer has my core and since I have a Volumio streamer I use it has a bridge which allows very easy control to both my Project Dac and Soncoz Dac.
This is a temporary situation, because although I can have my files play at their original quality, there’s something weird that sometimes the music has a small jump and hiccups - either because of Roon bridge or my computer?!
I’m thinking of getting a NUC and then either keep using my Volumio streamer or connect the NUC directly to my dacs (using a usb purifier). So I have two questions here:

  • Can I connect a NUC directly to a DAC?
  • Would I get similar sound quality just keeping using a bridge like I’m doing now?

Thanks in advance for the help!

Yes. You can connect via USB.

Yes. Roon feels separate ‘core’ and ‘endpoint’ units is the best combination compared to direct connection. But if you have a decent computer (NUC) and DAC, the difference between the two will be small. Some people pay thousands of dollars for that extra little bit, but you know the drill on this stuff.

Roon Bridge on something like an RPi running Ropieee is incredibly stable. I don’t know anything about Volumio. If you are getting small jumps and hiccups, something is very wrong. That just shouldn’t happen. How is your ‘daily computer’ connected to the internet, wireless or ethernet? Running the Roon ‘Core’ wireless is not a good idea. Roon puts a heavy demand on the network.

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Hi Scott,

Amazing, thank you so much for your help and answer!
I ended up being a NUC (8th gen, i5, 16gb RAM and a 250gb SSD for the core). I’ve tried to both connect directly to the NUC and to the bridge and you’re right, I hear no difference.
The hiccups are gone, so the problem was using my computer (it’s where I do my work, wifi, so yeah, not the best situation, only good for a tryout).
The Volumio streamer/DAC is based, as far as I know, on a NUC mod so it ends up being similar, I guess, to my NUC. As I said, I honestly don’t hear a difference if I’m using a bridge or the NUC directly.
I’ll be installing a 2,5 ssd drive on my NUC to work as a storage unit. Is it a good solution? I read on the ROCK threads the disadvantages that has, but all of them don’t bother me and it will give me a clean solution. Sound wise should be good?

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That’s a good solution. Sound wise, no difference to any other way of storing music. A USB drive has some advantages. But I prefer the internal SSD drive on my NUC too. Very simple and sleek.

By the way, welcome to the Roon Community! Lots of knowledge among the folks here.

Yeah, if there’s no sound difference I agree, it’s a more elegant solution and an external hard drive might be easier to replace/fix when there’s a problem, but those kind of things don’t happen frequently and it’s always a pain no matter where the storage is.
So by the way, I know that once I put the SSD on the NUC it will format it so I can only load my library after. Right now I connect to my external USB via smb on my Mac so I guess that the best way to copy my library to the internal ssd would be like this? Or is there an easier, faster way of doing it?

Thank you so much for your help and words! Hope in the future will be me helping others!

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What OS are you running on the NUC? Are you installing ROCK?
Yes, basically you do it transferring from one drive to Storage>Internal Storage on the NUC. Obviously connecting your computer to ethernet will help. Also, if you are running ROCK, turn off RoonServer while you are doing the copy. If Roon is watching the music directory as it loads you could get errors. It really isn’t a problem for a disk or two, but thousands of tracks could mess it up.
Once all the music is on the Internal SSD you can turn it on and Roon will import the music and begin the audio analysis.

:grin: Helping others is a great way to learn to understand Roon better!


Hi guys Many of the Nucs have a slit for a small harddisk (up to 2tb) and I use this to copy my music to as my Roon core and Nas are separated around the house.
Works like a charm and cheap.

Don’t buy a larger 4TB like I did as they are double the size and won’t physically fit in the enclosure (thankfully can always use more backups)

Yes, I’m using ROCK. And the USB drive is directly connected to the NUC. So the process would be the same? Or this you’re saying is for the USB connected to my Mac and transfer it to NUC by smb?
for to stop Roon Server I go to the webpage and on Roon Server Software choose stop, correct?

Most definitely!

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Thanks for the tip! I bought a 1TB ssd which for my library is enough and gives me enough room to expande my library for a long time!

Yes I then got a 1tb, before the disk run out of space (and then went 2tb as I store multiple Roon backups on it as well as my Synology.
Worth doing both with different intervals as it makes it easy to move to another server if you ever need to.

Nothing wrong with external usb, but I think internal cleaner for most (but not Darko)

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@Luis_Pereira , you Brazilian or Portuguese?

I don’t think you can do that.
Your NUC should become visible on your network (ROCK). Then you’ll be able to locate Data/Storage/Internal Storage which is the SSD your music goes on. So you connect your USB drive to your computer, connect the computer via ethernet, and move the files from the USB drive over to the network storage address (Data/Storage/Internal Storage) of the NUC.
You can do this via wifi, of course. It will just be slower.

Yeah, me too. It’s possible in the future that I run to the same problem as you, but that’s a maybe and measuring the pros and cons, the internal one is a better option for me. And if my NUC can’t get more the 2TB ssd then a USB drive can always be added, so possible future problems.

Btw since you’re talking about it, I can’t, no matter what I do, connect my Synology to my ROCK. I wanted in the meantime while I don’t get the SSD to use my Synology as my library (I have a backup of all my music there) but there always comes an error and I don’t see where I go wrong. I put smb:// then the path to the folder I want, put my credentials but there’s always an error…
For Roon backups my NAS would be great.

Portuguese, you?

Ok, good to know that. Since on that path I can see my USB drive there I thought that both the USB and the new SSD would be there and I could just come from one side to the other. But doing what you suggest is fine, so very easy. Thanks a lot!

Rock seems to use SMB v1 which is disabled on Synology (from memory). Also disabled from Windows, but I keep my master on Windows and then synchronize them around the house so there are at least 5 local copies and then the same in OneDrive and Amazon :+1:t2::smile_cat:

The size problem is only with 4 TB hard disks as they are fatter. 4TB and larger SSDs fit (but not cheap)