I think I’m finally ready for a NUC and Deep Harmony question

Hi All - after absolutely loving Roon this past year (glad I got lifetime!), I think I’m finally ready to get a NUC. Currently using a networked 2018 Mac mini for the core, but just way too many problems with it as my core and hoping for a much better user experience. The NUC seems to be the answer without breaking the bank too much (and I seem to now have a lot of time on my hands for some reason …). I have a large music library, so I’m thinking of getting the NUC8i7BEH along with 512gb SSD and 16gb RAM to directly plug into my router/switch in another room. I hope I’m not wasting my money, but figured I should somewhat maximize the system to future-proof it. I plan on hooking up an external LaCie 5TB USB 3.0 drive to the NUC that stores my large music library (instead of installing a separate SSD in the NUC or some other method of housing the music). Will this work great as far as performance and user experience? Internal SSD is expensive for what I need, and am hoping that using a normal external USB 3.0 hard drive should more than suffice when directly plugged into the NUC. If an internal SSD is really that much better, I am all ears.

Separately, I love the Logitech Deep Harmony extension which I also run on my Mac mini alongside the Core. How can I get that extension to run on the NUC, or do I need to use a Pi or some other method to run it separately from the Mac mini? I would love for this to run on something other than my computer to really make this a seamless experience, unless that’s not a good idea for one reason or another (meaning maybe I should just keep it running on my Mac Mini).

I’m not tech savvy at building machines, and never worked with a Pi…I just heard about it here and there so this is all new to me! Just wondering what others are doing that have a NUC and that also utilize Deep Harmony.

Thanks all for the help/advice! I appreciate it…

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I have a largish library (275K tracks) and use a 256GB SSD as thats the smallest I could find some years ago. It is only 20% full. save your money on the SSD

An external disk is fine for music via USB but be careful of the format as *HPFS+ is read only. Have a backup of this drive too. Note that only USB-A connections work - no USB-C support that I am aware of unless running windows.

*I assume you are going to run ROCK

I cant help on the harmony side but a RPi might be an option there…google is your friend.

if you plan to run windows or even ROCK maybe for future redeployment a bigger SSD wont hurt - make sure to use an NVMe SSD not the 2.5" type as the NVMe is faster

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updated above so a reread might be worth while

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Hi
I built a Nuc just a month ago and chose the NUC8i5BEH since I want it to be quiet. I7 gets hotter so the fan revs up.
Not enough power? Dont think so.
I use oversampling and get 60x
DSD transcoding is about 30x.
And this is just using 1 core of 4.

Regards,

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I use a 3B RPi just for extensions such as Harmony. Works great.

BTW, excellent decision to go with the NUC. I recommend ROCK for its simplicity and rock solid performance.

Your choice of an i7 and the external LaCie is also good, methinks. The i7 can easily accommodate multiple zones, signal dickering, and large libraries. The LaCie is plenty good enough; internal SSD is overkill.

Don’t forget backup schemes.

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I’ve been having too many stuttering issues, etc. with my maxed out Mac mini. So recently I’ve been reading/learning all about NUC/ROCK to separate this completely out (wish I would’ve looked at this sooner, but time was less available until now), including some very helpful YouTube videos to help explain it all (I never even knew NUCs existed…seems similar to a mac mini(?)). Based on everyone’s feedback I went ahead and pulled the trigger! Got a good deal on a used i7 and getting 512gb SSD along with used 16gb RAM (I might want to repurpose this in the future as a Plex server or something, and the cost differential was minor to do this). Glad I was able to find some used components which really brought the cost down more. Can’t wait to start the project and figure out how to build this out. I found more YouTube videos in another thread to help me through this, so hopefully it will come easy in putting it altogether.

After this, I will put on my research hat and try to learn all about Pis … looking at the mentioned 3B RPi above. I was always a bit curious about Pis but never seen one (except online). I really want the Harmony extension to run on a completely separate system that just runs all the time. Curious what other extensions are worth checking out as I have only used Deep Harmony (since I am big on Harmony hubs and remotes).

Thanks again for the help/insight!

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The latest RPi is v4; I’d go ahead and get that; not much price diff. Your next decision is which OS to install. DietPi and Ropieee are the two I have used; a bit of a learning curve.

As for extensions, here are the ones I have:

Install the Roon Extension Manager first, the rest will follow except for Khazul. It (I don’t believe) works with the extension manager. I’ll stop here, but you’ll have followup questions I’m sure.

and hey, what else do you have to do now? :slight_smile:

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Cool … thanks very much for the info, John! This will definitely keep me busy for awhile.

Nuc/Rock is a good choice. I have the NUC8I7BEH/Rock with 250GB M.2 for OS software and database, 16GB ram, 1TB internal Sata drive for my small but growing library, USB attached SSD for backup and USB attached Disc player for Ripping.

Its in my media closet with the rest of the Audio/Video/Network equipment. Only time I lay eyes on it is while ripping new additions. The setup just works, all the time. It has quickly breezed through every upgrade without any issues and I am very pleased it. Wishing you Good luck with yours.

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Hi - quick clarification if I may. While I’m anxiously awaiting my NUC, I am getting my external drive ready to plug into it with all my music. I formatted the drive as ExFat using my mac per the instructions, but does the Scheme matter? I set it to GUID Partition Map (instead of Master Boot Record) for the top level, and the sync is in progress (which will take hours). Figured I should get clarification on this before I waste too much time (I couldn’t find the answer in my research - hopefully I didn’t miss it). Thanks.

You should use master boot record

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Thanks for quick response! Stopping the sync now to re- do it … thx again

Hey guys - while I’m waiting for NUC, I’ve been researching Pis so that I can run the Deep Harmony extension. Been learning a bit about OSMC remote too because I’d like to have another remote control option by my sitting chair. If my logic is sound, I plan to get the following and install Ropieee on the Pi:

Pi 4 kit:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07V5JTMV9/ref=ox_sc_saved_title_2?smid=A30ZYR2W3VAJ0A&psc=1

OSMC remote:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01ECU11DI/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=A19MRELPGC5OXX&psc=1

OS:

Any comments/help is most welcome before I purchase and follow this path (this is all new to me). Curious if I’m missing anything too … thanks!