No decent DAC these days relies on its input interfaces’ timing. Any transport with sufficient bandwidth will do.
A well designed DAC will be immun to crappy signal from the streamer/transporter.
More DAC’s than you would think falls under this category; they are not capable of handling something outside perfect signal on their inputs (on these you will hear a big difference depending on source).
Sorry - what is meant by “transporter” and how is that different from “streamer”?
Streamer plays back based on network/internet. Transporter typically digital output from CD player.
This is an artificial distinction. Both devices deliver bits to the DAC.
What constitutes a less-than-perfect digital signal?
There are quite a few DACs around the $500 mark that handle jitter very well.
Yes, and there are DACs in the 10.000 USD range that does not
If you have $1.5 K to spare than it is a no-brainer, just get a Nucleus. It’s is designed for Roon, you just plug it in, turn it on, and then forget about it, it just works.
As far as the SQ is concerned, I have a feeling that it sounds better, maybe it is placeo, but I listen and enjoy the music more and more since I’ve had the Nucleus, and I regretted that I did not buy it sooner. Btw, I used to run the Roon Server on my MM 2012, and it works just fine as well, but I always had a nagging feeling that I was missing something.
And there it is, FOMO.
Well, it’s not a no-brainer for me — I have the funds but I also have a small server farm in my basement and so I’m no stranger to administration. I have quite a bit of spare CPU power and the Roon server seems to run fine on one of my NAS boxes. I don’t want to pay for something if I don’t need to!
I can’t see how this is possible — for example, with Qobuz, I assume the Roon server is just feeding the bits to the DAC streamer (a dCS Bartok in my case) and they’re exactly the same bits that the dCS would be getting directly from Qobuz.
One important question that you need to answer is how many tracks do you have in total in your library?
The Nucleus is designed for smaller library and the Nucleus Plus for the much larger library.
So that should factor into your decision right away…whether the Nucleus is even the right fit for your needs.
Because then you would be looking at a $2600 question and not a $1500 one!
It is down to you, your money, but it seems to me that you have already made up your mind.
I am just happy with my decision of getting a Nucleus, but it is my spare money, I know I would have a full Roon support if something goes wrong, even I know could build a Roon Rock NUC easily if I want.
Based on ease of setting up the NUC and installing with Roon Rock, I would not buy the Nucleus+ again. I’m happy with the Nucleus+, but I really don’t like to throw away money.
Of course, looking at the bigger picture… Nucleus+ is dirt cheap compared to the Trinnov Altitude32 with 32 channels
Regardless of Nucleus or NUC, do install a SSD disk for the music. Having music stored on a NAS will not give same experience (I have switched over to using the NAS as backup).
Roon server runs on Windows, macOS and Linux. Whatever you chose, you get full support. If they supported only Nucleus, I would not be here.
I know, but not your hardware/OS. It is obvious to you?
I downloaded the Synology package, installed it, opened it, told it where my library was located and that was it.
If my hardware/OS costs 1/3rd of Nucleus, it could crash 3 times more than the Nucleus and I would still break even. What are the odds?
If I had made up my mind I would not have bothered to ask the question. As I mentioned earlier, I have a nukleus+ on order but having discovered that Roon supports my Synology it is reasonable to ask the question, what are the marginal benefits of the nukleus over the Synology. So far the one benefit seems to be the seamless updates and that’s not something I care about since I live in computer world!
I don’t buy the argument that it will sound different (that is what I originally came here to ask about) and it has been pointed out that Roon doesn’t claim that either.
Some people have made the comment that one must use SSDs for a better experience but I don’t know what that better experience is supposed to be? Is it just that a song will start a few milliseconds faster or is there something really important t?
OK, so I would try it when it comes, Roon have 30-day return, no question asked.
I keep mine.
Agreed. To stream 192/24 to 6 zones (what Nucleus+ supports), you need a read speed of about 7 MB/s. To stream DSD128 to 6 zones, you need about 9 MB/s. Any HDD can do that.
Welcome to the party, @David_Jameson!
Roon runs well on a NAS with sufficient horsepower. You can run it as a package or a docker container. People are doing it both ways.
I have two installations (two locations) each running on a Synology NAS. As you point out, the thing is ultimately just streaming bits over a network.
Roon is a really outstanding product. A Nucleus is a turnkey, appliance-style device that suits some folks. If you’re confident in your ability to run it on a NAS - which it sounds like you most certainly are - they my personal recommendation would be to cancel your Nucleus order and stay the course with your current installation.
Either way, welcome again - you’ll have fun with Roon for sure.