Intel NUC with ROCK processor advice

That is pretty much the same build that I am using for my MOCK (check out my profile). It’s has worked without any issues for over a year but as others have mentioned it may stop working as it is unsupported.

If you are just going to use it for a ROCK build then personally I would get a NUC and put it in a fanless case.

I reckon that if you were to use a NUC8i5 or NUC8i3 you wouldn’t need to bother with a fan-less case. In normal use my 8i5 is inaudible in my listening room. A number of other 8i5 and 8i3 NUC users have posted similar results.


Hi Peter,

I just read through this thread and your comment that Windows is the fastest OS for Roon was intriguing. Have you done benchmarks between using Windows and Unix/Linix? Most of my experience has been that Unix/Linix supports higher performance in its applications.


I think it’s a bit more nuanced than that. This post by Brian goes into a lot more detail…

Thanks for the link Geoff. An interesting read.

I have a NUC D54250WYB I would like to use for ROCK. Long time user of Roon, using dedicated custom PC’s with Fidelizer and Audiophile Optimizer on Windows server 2019. I’m interested in hearing and comparing ROCK. I rely on native digital resolution, have high end linear power supplies, ground isolation and isolated/reclocked ethernet switches. I feed PS Audio DS DAC direct Conrad Johnson ART tube amps to Harbeth 40.2 anniversary edition speakers. Any experience out there or Roon folks comments on comparability? Thanks in advance.

Compatibility nor comparability…spell checker!

See here Roon Hardware Platform Suggestions for my experiences with a NUC with Gen3 i3 and then Gen5 i3 CPU - what you have here is Gen4 i5.
Now you will need a m.SATA SSD through a SATA Cable but with some thing like the Crucial MX500 you will get read/write of 500 MB/s for the storage of the Roon database. The Media storage would have to be USB DAS or NAS as no other storage options in the NUC.
Before you get concerned or the ‘get as much horsepower as possible’ recommendations come in, see here List Your NUC Capabilities Here for benchmarked performance of a ROCK server on a NUC5i3 doing multi zone DSP just as well as a NUC7 and NUC8 unit.

Thanks for the insight. This NUC has 16 gig memory and a 1 TB Samsung mSATA drive. Specs though show bus speed of only 100mhz.

Well given it has RAM and an SSD fitted, why not flash it with ROCK onto the current disk, and access media via USB-DAS or NAS and see if it boots and works in your configuration and the formats you presently have.
If so, then you can investigate a m.SATA SSD for RoonOS and database and then use the 1TB SSD for internal storage.

Works perfectly. Two zones working fine. I’ll experiment with sample rates,

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Will be interested in the capabilities you are able to obtain from this NUC running ROCK.

At Florida home with smaller systems. It’s networked with files from symbology nas and connections to Aurelic Aries mini to ps audio sprout using Aries DAC plus a Sonos with 4 speakers. Plays very well and controlled thru a zone for each ( 1 Sonos with all speakers grouped and the other the Aries) simultaneously playing all controlled by Roon. DSD256 native thru the Aries, no noticeable latency or dropped/paused tunes, again with Sonos zone also playing.

I will try hdmi and usb outputs to ps audio ds DAC when I’m back north. Very interested in SQ vs custom pc’s.

Success so far!

Native DSD256 or upsampled from a lower DSD format, or converted from PCM?

However, good to hear that your NUC with 4th Gen i5 is holding up.

Native. Yuko Mabuchi Trio downloaded from Native DSD. Aries set to play native as well. I’m impressed.

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