Help with random dropouts?

Hi, I’m hoping I can get some help pinning down the source of random dropouts that began a couple of weeks ago.

Roon Core Machine

MAC Studio 2022
Apple M1 chip
32GB memory
MAC OS Ventura 13.0.1
Roon 2.0 (build 1182)
Qobuz connected

Networking Gear & Setup Details

Google Mesh Wi/Fi and ethernet
Core is connected to Google wifi point via ethernet cable.
Streaming to Ropieeroon, Raspberry PI 4, connected via ethernet to wifi router

Connected Audio Devices

SSD external 2TB drive, USB-C connected to core machine for local files
Raspberry PI 4 with Ropieeeroon version 1.8 (build 1125)
Black Ice Audio Glass FX DAC via USB to Raspberry PI
Rogue Sphinx V3

Number of Tracks in Library

58,714 tracks

Description of Issue

I’ve been using Roon since updating the core (Mac Studio) earlier this summer without any problems, and never a glitch with previous iMac as the core for a couple of years prior. Random dropouts now occur daily where the track being played continues on the GUI, also on the Ropieeroon display, but sound is gone. It seems to happen with either local files or streaming Qobuz. After much trial and error, rebooting the core is a sure fire way to get it working again. There’s plenty of memory and processing power, and nothing unusual in the Activity Monitor when the dropout is occurring. Roon is running 14-35% of CPU most of the time, which seems a little high to me, but not sure.

edit: I should mention that the dropout occurs usually after playing for a while, hour+ or more, then plays continuously after rebooting core at least until I stop play.

What I’ve already tried when dropouts occur:
Rebooting Ropieeeroon
Rebooting DAC
Rebooting network
Rebooting Roon OS on core
Switching USB cables PI to DAC
Switching ethernet cables, PI to router, core to wifi point
Checking mesh network
Various iterations and sequences of the above
Choice swearing here and there

What only seems to work to get the sound back is to reboot the core, which makes me think it’s either the Mac or the Roon OS. Any ideas on what to check next?

is this to say that the Wifi point to which your ethernet—>core connection happens is getting IT’S internet signal over the air via wifi?

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Yes, exactly. The PI is directly connected to the router. The core is directly connected via cable to the Wifi point. It’s worked this way for over a year, but could still be a network issue.

Try connecting the core to the router. Even though it’s connected to the wifi access point by cable, that’s still wifi.


Sadly, Wi-Fi with Roon works…until it doesn’t

That’s why they make true wired connection to the core one of their first recommendations.

Just wanted to confirm. If you can go Ethernet from your router to your core. If you can’t, pack your patience.

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They do indeed recommend that, but in my house that isn’t possible unless I install ethernet from the modem and router to where the core is. You’re right, though, it works until it doesn’t. But I’ve had success for a couple of years this way, sigh.

I feel your pain

Obviously you can do what you like but with a library that size there’s really no reason you need to be throwing an entire Mac Studio at it for Roon use

An inexpensive NUC Core or cheap computer hardwired into your router and then letting where you listen be your endpoint is probably your next best bet. It’s an extra expense but not a huge one and the payoff will likely be much more solid Roon listening

I wish you luck. Forum is here to help!

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Just my two cents not necessarily directed at you but if I couldn’t run hardwire from my router to my Core I wouldn’t even bother using Roon. And I am a lifetime subscriber. I love the program

But it just has certain technical requirements to really work well and if I couldn’t meet them I’d switch over to Apple Music or something else.

That’s just me.

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Roon is very demanding of network resource. The problems with wi-fi are manifold. Interference from neighbouring networks on the same/adjacent channels, bandwidth being shared by other devices, backhaul capability of access points (depends a lot on whether wired or wireless). Short answer - make sure your core is wired to your router and library storage. If you can’t do that and Roon has issues, then maybe Roon isn’t for you.

Everything in my network which has an ethernet port is cabled. I’ve installed close to 1 km of ethernet cable which has entailed lifting floor boards, notching ceilings, chasing walls etc. My network is robust, though. No issues with any device due to bandwidth limitations. No gain without pain…

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Thanks everyone for your replies. But it’s not a network problem. It’s actually a hardware issue, in this case it is the DAC that is dropping audio, for some reason. I confirmed this by connecting it USB to the core. I’ll be sending it in for service!

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Oops. Sorry for all the unnecessary advice. Glad you figured it out though.

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