Is this really how awful ripping music Roon is?

I previously ran Roon on a MacBook, and added music to my library through iTunes/Apple Music. A bunch of my multi-disc collection were screwed up when “organized” by Roon. That has led to many fun hours repairing and reorganizing the mess.

I recently acquired a fanless NUC on which I am running ROCK. I like the uptime and simplicity. But my initial experience with ripping a multi-disc album directly into Roon was a failure. The first disc was imported perfectly. The 2nd disc? Completely unrecognized: “track01,” “track02,” etc. I tried manually entering the album name: no luck. I tried merging the 1st and 2nd discs into one album: no luck.

I have already wasted a lot of hours trying to figure out a workable local backup solution for my library after learning Roon doesn’t provide one for ROCK. That was strike one. If my ripping experience is typical, that’s strike two.

Is there some trick for ripping multi-disc albums that I have missed?

@John_Steinberg, based on comments from other users, ripping CDs from within a Nucleus or ROCK system seems to be hit or miss:

While I don’t have a Roon OS device, a number of other users recommend dBpoweramp and other third-party ripping and tagging solutions using a Windows or Mac computer, and then importing into the Nucleus or ROCK.

Personally I still use Apple Music/iTunes on my Mac for my ripping (it’s a good start and allows synching with my iOS devices), then bring these files into my Windows Roon Core; it’s basic but it works as a starting point before Roon adds its metadata. This may be an option if you still have a Mac.

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Thanks. I’ll check out dBpoweramp. But I’m rapidly tiring of the idea that I need to keep spending $ to make up for multiple things that Roon does badly or not at all but that my old setup did for free.

EAC is free and works well

Used it for years

I use AIFF for CDs (now space isn’t an issue, FLAC when it was…)

It’s basically WAV but with metadata ie no processor load to unpack the file but no problem tagging the files

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That is a great ripping tool and good for tagging single disc CDs but it will screw up every multi-disc set due to poor metadata sources (not the fault of the software). I invariably have had to edit the metadata after ripping for double CDs or multi disc sets in mp3Tag.

As @Anthony_B says, both Roon OS ripping and using dBpoweramp for multi disc sets is problematic. Both will inevitably involve manual tweaking, not only of the metadata itself but also of the folder structure to get Roon to recognise a box set.

However, manual tweaking is a damn sight easier with dBpoweramp than with using Roon to do it.

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It is completely normal that files are not tagged or named with album etc. as the ROCK ripper is not intended to use them outside of Roon, ever. It is intended for those who want to insert a disk and not be bothered further. For anyone else, dbPoweramp or similar and a manual tagger are the way to go, as mentioned by others.

This is in the instructions:

This support is also meant to be used in conjunction with Roon, and not other software. You will find it lacking if you use it with other software.

In the drive chosen, a folder will be created at its root, called CD-Rips. Inside that directory, we will create a folder called CD-Ripped-YYYY-MM-DD--HH-MM-SS, using the time that you started the rip, in UTC timezone. Inside this directory will be your files named trackNN.flac.


And that’s perfectly fine for single albums, but it doesn’t work at all for box sets where Roon demands a completely different naming and folder hierarchy structure… Oops.

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Yeah ok. I mainly intended to point out that names like track-01.flac are completely normal and not a sign of failure like the OP thought.

For box sets manual intervention is clearly required as well a for other special cases or user requirements

I am trying to make this work entirely within Roon. I don’t care how Roon IDs albums and tracks internally either, as long as the Roon UI handles them in a useful way.

When ripping a box set with Roon, so far it doesn’t. It doesn’t even respond well to manual intervention.

Ripping capability that is limited to single albums is pretty useless for serious music collectors.

My disappointment with the product is steadily increasing.

If Roon think things like library backup and ripping are not core functionality, so be it. I profoundly disagree, but I’m not designing their product. But why not at least partner with third parties who could help define APIs and make integration of 3P tools easy? I’d even pay for the added functionality if the integration was seamless. I’m growing tired of spending many hours researching and fiddling with unrelated and complicated tools to do what iTunes used to do for free.

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I’m not designing it either, I just explained that the track names are as designed, no use in becoming irate towards me.

As far as I can tell, the metadata for box sets simply does not exist in sufficient quality. dbPoweramp recognizes them as separate albums (often with different metadata) as well.

I attached a CD drive to my NUC with Rock and it just imports them fine with no software and the metadata is correct 95% of the time, it doesn’t seem to like any CD2s, extras or multiple box sets, which I end up manually typing in…Cheers

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DbPoweramp is disc based not album based, it looks for a matching disc based on same no of tracks and same tracklength to the miilisecond. It doesnt understand albums though, discs are dealt with independenly

You need to usr a good tagger afterwards to match to your box sets and multi disc albums.

I encountered a similar issue ripping a handful of 2-cd sets. I found that some manual tweaking was necessary, and although a bit annoying, definitely doable within Roon. If you use the “Identify Album” tool (click the 3 dots by the album name – and maybe edit album? Not on Roon now…) for the second (or later), unidentified disc in the set, it should choose the same album as disc 1 (correct album title and art).

The issue then is matching the tracks. I found that if there is a 2-cd set with, say, 10 tracks on each disc, then it will show all 20 tracks for the combined set when you run the Identify Album tool. Tracks 1-10 on disc 2 will default to be aligned in the first 10 track slots, which actually are the tracks for disc 1, so the track titles and time stamps don’t match. You need to manually click on the down arrow to the right of the track info to manually move the track down to the matching track where the titles and time stamps match. It takes a couple of minutes for each disc once you get the hang of the necessary edit. Like I said, annoying, but not too difficult.

Thanks. I tried both edit tools. Manually entering the album name didn’t help Roon ID it. I think I would have had to manually enter every track name, and that’s a massive PITA for a 6-disc set, for example.

Roon just isn’t turning out to be what I thought it was – a complete music lover’s solution for managing and enjoying my collection. That doesn’t reduce its value to zero, but as of today I am not seeing $150/year worth of value.

Maybe Roon is not for you.

You may be right, though a month or so I was an enthusiastic user, and bought and set up a fanless ROCK. And I am still going to try to make peace with it, because I really like some of what it does. But right now I’m immensely frustrated with it.

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@John_Steinberg, depending on what format you want for ripped CDs, would it make sense to try iTunes for ripping a few CDs (into either ALAC or AAC fornat) and see how its tagging works for you as a starting point for import into Roon? Even my Bandcamp downloads of ALAC files brought into iTunes are read perfectly by Roon.

70% of my 3k Albums inside Roon Nucleus‘ SSD have been ripped to ALAC using iTunes (yes that old fart, still available for Windows for free) on a Windows Computer without any problems recognizing multi-disc sets. Only 10 albums or so, all of them multi disc sets, needed additional manual tagging (using MP3Tag). The other 30% of my library were ripped to FLAC using DbPoweramp as a ripper, but with quite frequent additional tagging with MP3Tag. I like DbPoweramp a lot for it‘s ripping accuracy, but I use it mostly for audio conversion of HiRes and DSD download files, for CDs difficult to rip, or if I want a FLAC rip.
For multi-disc sets you have to take care that all discs are in the same artist folder, having the same album name (you can add (CD1) or so to the album name). Track number tagging for all files must be correct so that each disc starts with track 01. In addition you also have to tag the correct media number for each disc („disc 1 of 2“ for disc1, „disc 2 of 2“ for disc 2, and so on).
According to my wife I‘m a maximum nerd, so no problem for me.

Very similar to my usage; i.e., I used to use iTunes quite a bit and got into a very consistent tagging regime. I use the same regime now with dbPowerAmp (using it primarily for the AccurateRip feature) and tweak using MP3Tag as necessary to get complete consistency. Over 8,500 albums in Roon and the VAST majority of them are recognized / presented perfectly.