Increasingly Interrupted Playback with using Airplay

Over the last several months, I have been experiencing increasing interruptions in playback when streaming to Airplay devices (Airport Expresses and Apple TVs), particularly when grouped. When ungrouped, each device plays for perhaps a half hour at a time without issue. When grouped, playback ceases between tracks. Up until recently, streaming internet radio was fine, however now even this is similarly affected. I do not seem to have this issue when playing to RAAT devices.

I have watched the recorded discussion on network optimization and implemented the recommendations to the extent possible, but the issue persists. The question is whether there is something I may be missing, or is it simply the case that I need to move on from Airplay endpoints. Actually, I would not mind moving on, as it is a bit ridiculous to be relying on 10+ year old devices such as Airport Expresses, but in my use case scenario the combination of small form factor combining endpoint, DAC, and coax out is compelling.

I am using these devices largely to drive older B&O gear (Beosound 1, 8, 2000) in a whole house system for casual and ambient music. For more dedicated listening, I use Roon Ready devices (MyTek Brooklyn Bridge, Matrix Audio mini i Pro 3, and Cambridge Audio CXN), but these drive separate standalone systems. I’m interested in the Raspberry Pi4 and RoPieeeXL as AE replacements, but then that requires a separate DAC and coax solution as well. Suggestions?

Configuration as follows:

Verizon FioS connected to Eero Pro mesh system and two satellites running v6.13.4-21

Roon Core
16 GB M1 Mac Mini 2020 running Ventura v13.2 and running Roon Server version 2.0 build 1202 exclusively and headless, connected via ethernet to one Eero Pro.

Endpoints (all connected via WiFi, with reserved IPs – I recognize that ethernet is STRONGLY preferred, but not really feasible in my apartment situation)

Roon Ready
Cambridge Audio CXN v2
Matrix Audio mini i Pro3
Mytek Brooklyn Bridge

Roon Tested
Apple TV gen 3 (x2) - Video displays
Apple Airport Express gen 1 (x2) - Beosound 1 and Beosound 2000
Google Home (x3)
Google Home Mini (x3)

Other Network Devices
Apple Airport Express gen 2 (x1) - Beosound 8
Apple HomePod gen 1
Apple HomePod mini

Typically I would use the AE as a single grouped zone, but as I mentioned, this is no longer stable. Prior to Roon 2.0, all was fine.

Thank you

That is a good idea but will require some $$

I’m ok with airplay for background music (living room, kitchen and bedroom) the single difference is that they all are connected via ethernet. No stops for me when grouped.

If using what I have around (old laptops and receivers) airplay is the answer but as you stated I would like to upgrade them to RAAT

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I can’t help with AirPlay.

But if you can fine Raspberry Pis, then you can fit DAC hats to get a decent quality analogue output.

I have a mix of Allo (who I fear may no longer be around) and Hi Fi Berry (who even have some Pis to sell if you buy a kit.

I use them for my non critical zones - and am happy with them. (I set the Hi Fi Berry DAC2 HDs to upsample to 192 to avoid a click when they switch sample rate clocks)


Thanks very much for the suggestion. I’m leaning (heavily) to switching over to Raspberry Pis. I have some experience with them since I also use RooExtend and a RooDial using the Raspberry Pi, but as you allude, finding them is becoming an issue. I’d need several, and they’re slightly kludgy, but at least they don’t require too much space.


A brief update. A review of the archives suggested a rollback in AE firmware from 7.8.1 may be beneficial. Indeed, moving to 7.6.9 has lead to a dramatic improvement. Although not perfect, and I am still looking forward to transitioning to RAAT when time allows, but for now the AEs continue to soldier on…

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