High-res over mp3

Hi all,
Couldn’t find a proper answer to my question, besides Brian mentioning scan+match in 2015.

I want to “feed” roon with my MP3 collection for recommendations, but I don’t want roon to play them, if higher quality is available.

Is there an option for that?


Roon cannot by itself cannot improve quality of files you already have. MP3s have “information” removed from them in order to reduce file size. There is no way to recover that lost information. Some music programs say that they can improve the sound of MP3s with equalization or boosting dynamic range but the fact remains that the information stripped out in MP3s is gone.

If you have a hi-resolution service subscription (Tidal or Qobuz) you can find (hopefully most if not all) the music files you have. Then you can stream them or, on Qobuz with the Sublime subscription, purchase them at reduced prices. That will get your music in CD quality, or in some cases, Hi Resoultion.

Hope this answers your question. Have a great day.

I’m not sure, but I don’t think that the current set of streaming preferences will deliver quite what you want. This is the current set:

AFAIK, if you are using Roon Radio, and it picks a track to play that exists in your library, then it will play the track from your library, rather than a higher quality available from your streaming service (Qobuz and/or Tidal), because the library track is marked as the “Primary version” by default.

What you could do is to add tracks and albums from your streaming service to your library that matches the MP3 content in your library, and then mark the streaming versions as the “Primary version”.

I’m aware you can’t improve mp3 quality, and it’s not what I need, but thanks for your reply.
I want Roon to pick the Qobuz or Tidal versions, over my MP3 local files.

Hi Geoff,
Thanks for your quick reply, and for your support to the community.
It seems that streaming content preference is only picking one streaming service over the other, but not over low-res local library.
Grouping and setting as primary is indeed a workaround.
However, time consuming, as I have to do this for a few 1000 albums.

Import your mp3 and make a playlist. Export playlist as Soundiiz format.

If you subscribe to Qobuz you can get a free Qobuz pass for Soundiiz to allow you to import into Qobuz from your playlist. It will match as best it can. Link your Qobuz account in Roon it will sync what you just imported into your Roon library. As not all albums will be a direct version match you will have to group some manuallly. Roon links based on equivalence it won’t group albums that are not found to be the same version. I have had to do all mine manually as was before this feature existed.


I don’t know if you can do this automagically but… certainly one by one.

You’ll do all the normal Roon stuff and let it discover your mp3 albums / tracks.

When you want to play something click the “Versions” tab. If there is a better streaming version you can tell Roon to prefer that version. From that point forward Roon will play the streaming version.

As others have now posted, there is a solution to help with what you want to do - prioritize the higher quality streaming versions.

I had the same situation, 1000’s of mp3s. After I subscribed to Qobuz and Tidal, I just began going thru them one at a time. When you choose an album, Roon will show you if the album exists on Qobuz/Tidal. Then you can add the new album to your library by using “Add”. NOTE: If there is ANY difference in the metadata such as title, number of tracks, etc., Roon will see the mp3 version as a DIFFERENT album. This was a little frustrating. After a week or so, I had the entire collection updated. It wasn’t as tedious as expected, kind of gratifying to update them.
If you want to not see the mp3 versions any more without losing them, you can use the “edit” feature to “hide” them. The mp3s will still be in your database, but Roon will not see them. You can easily see them again. In the Settings area under “General” there is an option to unhide all albums.
I was a believer in the “mp3 sounds as good” camp…not anymore. I hope this message helps.

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As per my reply to Geoff.
It seems that this option is only picking the best quality between the 2 streaming services, but not over my mp3 library.
But thanks

Could be a good workaround.
I can imagine the satisfaction reaching the end of it.

Thanks for the tip.
I ended up doing that, as it seemed to be the quickest way.
1000 songs per excel sheet, as Qobuz is limited to 1000 songs per playlist.
I am still not sure why Roon doesn’t have the option to group song and select primary version (in the highest quality) automatically.
Have a good day

Why not use “focus” and then select your prefered quality ?

It will if they are the same exact release and matches track count. More often than not mp3 releases are not the exact same release and won’t group. I had a large portion of mine group and a large not. This is all part of Roons design to allow you to have different versions of albums such as remasters, remixes, hires versions, they don’t all come from the same master and thus are different versions of the same album. It leaves it up to us to decide if you want to group different release versions of the same album most collectors don’t.

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I get your point, and surely they should leave you the option to group or not.
I am not saying they should automate grouping by default, ofc, but maybe have it as an option.
As mentioned in my post, Brian mentioned scan+match in 2015.
My understanding was that it would scan your locals, and match with Tidal or Qobuz in higher-res if available. If it can’t find the exact same version, it would play the local one.

Thanks for the suggestion
But I still want the MP3 to be played if no better quality is found.

If you have multiple versions available, such as streaming versions on Tidal or Qobuz, and local versions (mp3, etc.) you should see a “versions” option when you are viewing the album info. If you open up that, one of them will be flagged as “Primary”. If you want one of the others to be primary, then you can select the dots on the right and select “Make Primary”. This would require that you do this for each album that you wish to override the default. You probably are hoping for a way to change the default behavior. But this is what I do, whenever I wish to prefer local over the streaming version, or vice versa, for any particular album.