How can I stop Roon stalling/skipping during playback?

Core Machine
Macbook Pro 2016 2GHz Dual Core i5, 16GB RAM, 500GB SSD. MacOS 11.4 (Big Sur)
I’ve changed the energy-saving setting to not sleep when on power

Network Details
MBP connected via a new Cat7 ethernet cable to a Technicolor router

Local music files on WD 2TB NAS drive, connected to same router via ethernet
Streaming via Qobuz hires

Audio Devices
Endpoint is Auralic Aries Mini, connected to network via wifi. This outputs to Benchmark DAC3, etc.

Library Size
1000 albums, 12,000 tracks

Description of Issue

Playback is ruined by constant stalling and skipping. This happens with both Qobuz and local files, but bizarrely (to me, anyway) it seems if anything worse when streaming local files. An error message pops up saying the music is loading slowly, etc.

For example, I just tried to play a 25-minute, 5-track violin concerto, which is stored as a FLAC ((44/24) on the NAS. After the 5th or so stall/skip during the first 10 minutes, I gave up and switched to streaming it to the Aries using Auralic’s LIghtning app – this played the whole work flawlesly – with the same file, same storage/network/endpoint hardware.

I’ve had my 30-day trial and am now paying for a montly subscription. I love the metadata side of things, and would prefer to switch to an annual sub and perhaps invest in a separate NUC/ROCK core, but I’m unwilling to spend the £550+ this would involve if I can’t see it working on my existing hardware which is surely adequate? (if inconvenient.) Processing speed is shown as 45–50x.

Any suggestions? I really want to have this work but it’s just too frustrating at present!

I see your Auralic is connected by WiFi. Mostly this isn’t a good option. Try connect it by cable too see if this improves things.

Thanks for the suggestion. I previously held off connecting the Aries with cable because Auralic recommends (quite strongly) using wifi. Also, I’d assumed the problem was upstream (“slow loading” etc.) rather than downstream of the Core.

However, it seems this may be the answer. I’ve been away for the weekend so haven’t had a chance to try out for long, but first impressions are good – it seems much more stable: it’s played local files for about 90mins now without skipping/stalling.

I’ll continue to test over a longer period, but hopefully this will confirm the initial impressions

Thanks for your help!

1 Like

I spoke to soon …

Everything is now connected via cable, but the skips/stalls are continuing as bad as ever this morning.

What else is there I can investigate or try?

Hi @Mark_Ware

Does the same issue happen if you play to System Output?

How is your NAS connected to the network?

Hi Dylan

No, playing to System Output seems to be much more stable – I just tested it by playing shuffled tracks from the NAS for over 3 hours without a single skip.

The NAS is connected to my router via a short length of ethernet cable.