HQ Player integration with NUC or NAS and Roon

Hey so I’m in the process of building a new chain for headphone listening primarily. I don’t have a dedicated PC currently and I listen via Qobuz streaming or my personal FLAC library. In this new chain I’m planning on trying running HQ Player through Room and im trying to wrap my head around my options for integrating this into my chain.

I was planning on getting either a NUC or a NAS to use as both storage for my FLAC library as well as my Room core originally but I’m trying to wrap my head around how or what I would need to integrate either of those with HQ Player.

The way I understand it is Roon controls HQ player which is then connected to your DAC, and I’m not understanding properly if I can do that using Roon remote basically when my core is another device.

So for example could I say, have my roon core / FLAC library on a NUC/Rock, then use HQ Player on a laptop or PC connected to my dac or would I have to use a NAA such as the Sonore OpticalRendu connected to my chain instead as the best option?

I like the idea of the NUC still and now that I’m integrating HQ Player I’m all confused on what I need to do to be able to add it to my chain and control it all.

Yes, that’s the case.


You don’t need to have, it is an optional extra.

I probably explained poorly, the part I’m not understanding is that if say my roon core is a NUC, cool, since roon controls HQ player is it possible to control HQ player settings using like a tablet or phone or does that have to be done via a laptop.

And say I wanted to use an endpoint to my DAC instead of a laptop does it need to be a Roon ready endpoint (Bluesound Node etc) or HQ Player endpoint.

Sorry for the poor explanation of what I’m trying to ask. It’s the endpoint scenario I don’t understand really. Since it’s an app (Roon) controlling an app (hq player) im simply confused as to what my end point to my DAC needs to be if not a laptop / PC or if in the case of a NUC or Mac mini etc can I run both apps on it and control HQ Player settings remotely then stream to an endpoint or for changing HQ player settings do I need to be doing it on a laptop / PC

HQPlayer NAA compatible.

From Roon’s perspective, HQPlayer is the endpoint. From that point on, it is HQPlayer’s business.

Depending on the HQPlayer product, you can control some of the settings remotely using HQPlayer Client. And with HQPlayer Embedded you can control all settings remotely using HQPlayer’s built-in web interface.

When you use Roon and HQPlayer together, you are using Roon to choose what music to play and then sending that audio stream TO HQPlayer which takes over everything at that point, including further distribution to endpoints. In that case, you would need to be using HQPlayer endpoints (NAA) as mentioned by Jussi.

Is it possible to have say a Nucleus as a Roon core and have HQ player set up and running 24/7 on another device like a NUC or something to a NAA endpoint connected to my DAC?

I’m wondering if it’s possible / worthwhile to essentially eliminate a laptop or PC from the chain or if it would be way more painless to just run HQ player from my M1 MacBook usb to my DAC and call it a day

Yes, it is possible. You could either run HQPlayer OS on something suitable. Or you can run HQPlayer Desktop on some M1 Mac (not necessarily MacBook Air though, as it has thermal limitations).

So in theory then if I got something like a UP Gateway or other NUC device, set it up with HQ Player OS then just connected it via usb to my DAC would I be able to use it as an endpoint this way and control it via a HQ player zone with Roon Remote? Or would I still need Roon on the device as well?

Sorry for all these questions, I’m currently just running HQ player and Roon on my MacBook pro and while I have zero issues doing this I want to move my MacBook to my headphone setup in another room but still be able to upsample with HQ player on my main stereo without needing to be connected to it so I’m trying to figure out what my best option is.

It is near my internet modem so something like a Sonore UltraRendu then just usb to my DAC at my stereo would likely work but I was trying to think up a system that has both a NAA endpoint at my stereo as well as a seperate Roon Core so I don’t have to leave my laptop running all the time.

I’m probably making it way more complicated than it is in my head.

Only difference to your current HQPlayer setup is that HQPlayer would run on it’s own headless machine with configuration done through web browser. You could connect DAC directly to it, or use a NAA (you can add such later). How powerful device you would need depends on the amount of DSP work you have in HQPlayer.

No, Roon and HQPlayer can reside on separate machines.

You would still need HQPlayer running somewhere. You could have it running on your laptop though.


Yeah this is basically the end goal, I have my settings pretty well laid out and I only fiddle with them from time to time for fun so being able to use HQ player just from Roon remote or something to be able to play on my main stereo without having to move or use my laptop is what I’m after. Supposing if that’s all I want a NAA with HQ Player OS is my best bet?

Budget for whatever I need is whatever will work the best.

I don’t play around with DSD too much right now I’m just upsampling to 768 PCM but will likely play around with 1.536 when I get a new DAC that can do it.

Edit: @jussi_laako

Was looking at NUCs and came across the skull canyone and this Phantom Canyon. Although not cheap solutions would something like this be capable of doing a decent amount of upsampling in a headless configuration like you mentioned? Just looking at what some decent options for that might look like.