How do Roon and BluOS Controller work together?

I have been using both Roon and BluOS devices since before they started to work together, and have been following the developments of their integration from the first day, though only superficially. I realise that by now, most of the kinks have been worked out, e.g. there used to be drop outs when more than one device was selected for streaming, but that doesn’t seem to happen anymore. In any case, many thanks for the great work by both teams, imho this is an important step on the path to the integrated music library & player system of the future.

There is still one topic that seems a bit mysterious to me: how do the Roon and BluOS applications integrate together to control the devices? One recurring problem that I have is that BluOS devices appear and disappear in the Roon Audio Setup in a seemingly random manner. Well, not really random, since there seems to be a connection to the groupings in the BluOS controller, but how it exactly behaves is still a bit unclear to me.

Let me illustrate this by describing what happened this morning. Afaik, all my devices and software is on the latest official release level. On my iMac, which is also the Roon server, I started BluOS first. My 4 devices were all grouped together, with the device in my study being the “main”, i.e. first named device. I then started Roon, and realised that none of my devices were visible in the Audio Setup, only system out. I was too lazy to get up and restart all my devices, so I started playing around to see if I could get them to be recognized by Roon by another way. After several attempts, I finally had a partial victory when I ungrouped the devices on the BluOS controller. Suddenly, 3 out of 4 devices appeared in Roon. The one missing was the “main” device of the previous grouping (the one in my study). So I selected another device in BluOS, and added the missing (previously “main”) device to form a group of 2. Nothing changed in Roon. Then I dissolved the group in BluOS, and behold, the previously missing device also appeared in Roon.

Based on these experiences, I have tentatively formulated this theory: devices already grouped in BluOS are not detected by Roon when Roon is started. When an existing group in BluOS is dissolved, all devices except the “main” device are suddenly detected by Roon. Creating groups in BluOS after Roon is started, doesn’t seem to have an effect on detection in Roon, but dissolving groups does.

Can any of the developers in either team shed some light upon this behaviour?

I would also propose to further enhance the interplay between the 2 applications. I think that it would be best, if Roon would be able to see the existing grouping in BluOS, and both applications would interact with the devices in parallel and in a transparent way. I would be happy to help in any way I can, with suggestions and testing and otherwise.

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Bluesound has made many of their devices Roon Ready.

I have no idea why, but my guess is that when you group devices using the BluOS app, it somehow disables Roon Ready.

Regardless, my suggestion would be to not use the BluOS app when using Roon. If you want to group the zones, click on the Zone Picker in Roon (bottom right, next to the volume), right click it (or long press) and select Group Zone. Roon will tell you which Zones you can group.

Give that a try. Now that I have Roon, I don’t use the BluOS app at all.

Cheers, Greg

If I merge two devices in BluOS the primary one only shows in Roon but Roon will ply to both devices.
You can choose which is Primary in BluOS.

Example:- Kitchen/Conservatory as a single grouped zone in BluOS shows in Roon as Kitchen+1

Conservatory/Kitchen as a single zone grouped in BluOS shows on Roon as Conservatory +1

If the units are not grouped in BluOS they show as individual zones in Roon and can be grouped in Roon.

That’s how I see it. Logical really.

Good idea. I only use the BluOS app for listening to MQA from Tidal which is only available in my 2ch system. My other systems, Sonos and my Oppo based home theater I strictly use Roon.

I have a single BLuOS device, a power node, and i’ve noticed this behavior as well (disappearing device), so it has nothing to do with groups. i do use the optical input for tv, and i noticed that sometimes when switching back to roon (just starting music in Roon), i get an error that the "transport failed to select roon.) . opening the BS app and selecting roon there fixes it, but it’s vexatious to have to use two apps.

Has there been any comment from either Roon of Bluesound on this issue? I am just lining up a NAD C368 with BlueOS module for purchase but this sort of behaviour is not conducive to listening to music.

I have a Bluesound Pulse 2 and Mini with no isues except once, I lost the Pulse 2. Bluesound recommended I restart everything on my network. Router and switches. This I did and the problem went away. I use a wired network for audio. So, apart from this one time it has been 100% reliable.

Well, I still use the BluOS app to listen to other sources like Calmradio, Spotify, Tidal. And I need to use the grouping feature with those services, too. So not using BluOS is not an option.

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indeed- i use it for Tidal Masters and Qobuz.

I have 3 bluesound devices and haven’t seen this. I also group 2 together and ROON works with that group fine. I basically never use the BlueSound software though (except to make the grouping).

The behaviour seems to be different for different people. I wonder why this is so?

I’ve seen this as well… grouping in BluOS can “mask” a grouped device (or multiple) in Roon.

In my case some combination of:

  1. ungroup in BluOS
  2. close roon core software on my Mac
  3. powercycle the missing device, or
  4. reboot Mac

Clears up the problem. I hadn’t noticed “main +1” when I’m missing a device, but I’ll look. My guess would be that Roon first polls for devices when opening and that it can’t “re-see” them all unless something tickles it.

I rarely have to go to any more than one of the above steps… having read this, I’ll be a bit more systematic about it in the future.

I agree that powercycling can solve most of the problems, but it is somewhat annoying, especially because some of my devices are placed on top of cupboards and bookshelves, and the wall sockets are not always accessible either.

It’s been a very rare occurrence to have to reboot the Bluesound but this is a reality of the latest technology and perhaps needs consideration as we install things.

I am glad that I found this thread, because it seems to shed some light on the troubles I am experiencing combing Bluesound and Roon. Currently I am testing Roon to see if I can use it as a replacement for the Bluesound controller, which has very limited functionality (at least the desktop controller, which is the one I use). I have three Bluesound speakers, two of them configured as a stereo pair, the other one added to that group. But Roon could not play to that group because it was not detected. I just read here that ungrouping the speakers could help. So I did just that and now Roon detects the speakers, but only two out three. But after power cycling the third it was also detected.

Now to find out how to configure a stereo pair in Roon…

Can you just re group them in BluOS and Roon sees them as a single zone.

Things seem to work now, but I am not sure how. I first ungrouped in BlueOS, then grouped the three speakers in Roon, then noticed I did not see an option for setting left/right channels per speaker in Roon, then grouped the speakers again in BlueOS (one stereo pair + one speaker playing both channels). Now I can play to the group from Roon, and the sound is stereo where it is supposed to be. Hurray! Now I hope this situation will remain stable.

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Great news. I think these things are usually network issues and Rebooting everything is the first thing to try.

I am trialing Roon and everything was fine, until I started having problems when grouping Bluesound devices. I have a Node 2 and several Pulse speakers. When I grouped them in Roon, I could not ungroup them. It took me while and then some of speakers simply disappeared and reappeared. I never had any issues using just BluOS. I love the discovery and file management, but with these issues and the additional hardware needed it might not be for me.


Can you provide a bit more detail? Did you group them in Roon or BluOS. Did you group them in one and try to ungroup them in the other?.. The grouping function is different between the two, so it could partly explain your issue.

Also what do you mean “additional hardware” required for Roon? If you have a computer with your music files on it, there is no additional hardware. If you were simply using Tidal + a USB drive on one bluesound device, or a NAS, I could see your point… the big advantage of Roon is that many people will experience an INCREASE in hardware given that they are no longer constrained to (in this case) a BluOS ecosystem. For example an old IOS device or android could be the “endpoint” for a new room, without requiring you to purchase another BluOS device.