Intel NUC cache

Roon Core Machine

For The moment Mac Mini 2012 i7, 8Gb

Networking Gear & Setup Details

Amplifi HD mesh router connected to the ISP modem. All Roon Ethernet. No VPN

Connected Audio Devices

Mac Mini Roon Server, Ropieee endpoint, USB-connected Bel Canto DAC 2.5,

Number of Tracks in Library

10.000 tracks

Description of Issue

Going to buy a Intel NUC for Roon OS/ROCk
Either NUC7i5 or NUC10i5. 7th gen has a bit faster single-core, but less cache.
So question is. How important is the cpu cache?

Should I go for most cache? Or faster single-core?

Streaming tracks count just like local files when they are added to the Roon library because they have the same metadata in the database, and, e.g., following a credit link in an album from streaming in the Roon database needs just as much computing resources as for a local album.

So it would help to know how many streaming albums you have in the Roon library to judge.

Once your NUC is fast enough for the overall Roon library size that you expect, including streaming, you don’t have to overthink it with the cache size :slight_smile:

FWIW I have a 10i5 with 25,000 streaming tracks and 11,000 local (2,700 vs 1,000 albums) and it’s plenty fast.

You will also want to consider what you will do with DSP. (I use convolution filter in 1 zone, no upsampling, and again, plenty fast. For 2 as well. The NUC could also live with upsampling but I don’t need to)

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Also, remember when configuring the NUC to run the memory in Dual channel (two memory cards vs one) to get that little bit more speed out of the memory bus. Memory has been cheap lately so 16 gig (2x8 gig DIMMs) would be good and future proofed if you might want use the NUC for something else later or do alot of DSP…

Thanks for clearing that up. I didn’t know. My library is 10.000 tracks.
I guess the 7th gen will be enough, as I don’t use any DSP. I have 3 zones, but play only one at a time.
But if I find a 10th gen NUC at roughly the same price, I´ll go with that.

With that library size you would probably be fine even with an i3, but some headroom doesn’t hurt, so I’d also go with an i5.

According to the Intel website, the NUC7 came with 2 different CPU models, not sure which one you are considering. I created a CPU benchmark comparison for you, showing the two 7i5 and the 10i5 CPU from the respective NUCs. The single thread performance is what you are most interested in, and as you can see it really doesn’t matter much in practice. Neither does the power consumption:

Whether the cache size or the raw core performance matters more is probably impossible to decide because it typically depends on the precise operation, data sizes, etc. Meaning that if you do action A in Roon, one CPU may be a tiny bit better, but with action B it may be the other one. I wouldn’t lose sleep over it.

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Thank you. Then I’ll just go with the 10th gen if not much price diff. Or be happy with a 7th gen.

Gradually planning on fanless case. But first the NUC :blush:

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