Logitech TRANSPORT sound quality

Hi all,
I just tested Roon on my Logitech Transport. Using my Win10 PC as core, enabled squeezebox option. Both PC and Transport connect via ethernet. Transport then spdif out to my Arcam AV888 pre. My PC is a HP i5 4xxx with 24GB ram and 500GB SSD.
I must say I’m pretty disappointed on the sound quality. Which when using Roon to play flac on my PC or Tidal stream via Transport, the sound quality is quite lower than using LMS(on same PC, of course only LMS or Roon running at one time) play same flac or use tidal plugin for LMS. Pretty obvious.
I heard using Windows PC as core does impact sound quality compare to Nucleus. I just don’t understand why LMS installed on same PC steam to Transport can produce way better sound quality.
I got another 10 days trial period. Yesterday I ordered a MiniDSP SHD, could use that later to stream music if it’s better than the Logitech Transport. However, if Roon setup on my system does sound less good than Tidal app/LMS, then I’ll stop using Room after trial.
Any comments and ideas are much appreciated.

Don’t think it would be possible to understand it. You can apply logic and say that the LMS functionality of Roon is not its primary application so little attention is paid to it beyond making it work reliably. But that is just speculation. It would be interesting to hear if a RAAT enabled end point sounds better to you but the Transporter is a nice device and I don’t blame you for wishing to make it work as designed but with Roon.

Might be worth posting a screenshot of the Roon signal path - see if anything jumps out.

I have a Transporter and it sounds exactly the same through either LMS or Roon, as it should really because all you’re doing is using it to shift files (FLAC) to the Transporter which are then unpacked and sent through the DAC.

Can you post a screenshot of your signal path? You might accidentally have some DSP or volume levelling going on that’s colouring your impression.

Here’s mine for instance:

I fix my output at 100% and control the volume from my preamp

I also set FLAC compression to true as this essentially gives you a native LMS experience, where the FLAC file is sent directly to the Transporter to be unpacked, rather than converting it to WAV on the core and sent over the network to the Transporter. It’s just more efficient.

Don’t believe everything you hear. The whole “OS affects sound quality” claim is without foundation.

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Hi anon55914447,

I didn’t use fixed volume but the rest settings are the same. Now I tried exactly your configuration yet still I can hear the difference still. I’ve then tried all the options, like decode MQA/let core to decode MQA etc. With/without FLAC compression option, fixed or using volume control. I should say the difference to the output is very minimum. Any of the settings, can’t compare with LMS playing same song.
It could be less obvious when playing pop songs. Yet I found some audiophile CD could show big difference:

Stockfish Records - Closer to the music 4, you can play the first track, 3rd track ‘my diamond mine’ or track 7 “Baby it’s cold outside”, you should hear the difference.
Using Roon, it’s just HiFi, while using LMS, the sound feels HiEnd.


Well good luck in sorting it out.

I have two Transporters, one using the single ended analog outputs to an Icon Audio tube integrated, the other digital coax out to a Lyngdorf TDAI 2170, which has Room Perfect room correction software.

I’ve used them both with Roon and with LMS, using the same machine (2014 Mac mini), and also with LMS running PiCore Player on a Raspberry Pi 3b+.

they all sound different. LMS on Pi and on the Mac sounds different; I may slightly prefer the Pi, but it’s pretty ephemeral- I could be imagining it.

Roon, to my ears, sounds better, more dynamic, slightly more forward, richer. again, I could be imagining it, and when I’ve gone back to LMS, I’m never really disappointed.

the above is true for both Transporters, analog or digital output.

a few other points: it’s amazing how great an experience you can have with LMS on cheap Pi, for maybe $75 all in (Pi, Case, SD card). Also, the LMS DSTM plugin is vastly superior to Roon Radio.

trust your ears.

This is objectively terrible advice, but OK.

subjectively it’s fabulous.

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I would be absolutely fascinated to learn how a transport whose sole job it is to move a FLAC file from one place to another and can sound “richer and more forward” than another.

Not at all.

Haha, it’s interesting to see these debates. As I do hear big difference for LMS and roon, surely it’s not my imagination. Can’t tell why. Earlier I thought it could be Roon works best on Nucleus/Linux…

I’m kind of practical person. All my cables are like below $100 pair. Esp power cables/digital cables I just use those come with devices. Unless someone borrows me some high grade cables that I can hear the difference, otherwise I’m not planning to spend hundreds on cables. As I’m working on IT, I don’t believe changing USB cable/network cable/power cable could make a difference unless if I got chance to test…

Anyway, I’ve doubt how come Nucleus can exceed in sound quality? How big the difference for the digital signal transferring on a fanless machine? Since multiple users mention there’s no difference, my HTPC will needs be on anyhow, storage of movies and music, I won’t spend money on that just for testing out. etc.

I like the control/feature of the Roon. But I need to find a way to make it sound at least the same to LMS.

If I had a £, etc…

For the avoidance of doubt, it is not a “signal”. You are transferring a file. It does not have a sound, or a waveform.

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Then I really don’t know the selling point for Nucleus, maybe just a fancy nice built NUC computer with pre-installed Roon server.

There’s still a lot of unknown in reg to computer streaming audio. Seems theres no option/or no one knows how to improve the mysterious sound quality issue on my system.

I’ve ordered MiniDSP SHD a few days back and hopefully it will arrive before my Roon trial finishes. Then I’ll test how does it sound stream via MiniDSP, any my Transporter can be used as DAC later to see if there’s any improvement.

The selling point is for users who do not have the technical know how or just don’t want to setup a NUC with ROCK. OR, who have need of Control 4 integration.

Otherwise, the internals of the Intel Nuc (gen 7 I’ve been told) and the Nucleus are the same. Same motherboard, same power supply, the only difference is the fanless case, hardware-wise. In terms of the OS, the nucleus has Control 4 integration and specific throttling abilities to reduce cpu heat in the fanless case.

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We’ve probably moved on from gen7. The OEM NUC boards Intel produce are now gen8.

Yes, it’s a convenience product. Roon themselves have never claimed otherwise.

There really isn’t. A lot of claims are made. Not much evidence.

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True true, still some people don’t beleive that 0 and 1 is the info transported and if in the right way there is no claim in sound quality on the way between source and streaming device…

If the source is in the Internet/Cloud and does not belong to myself, there is no gurantee of quality there since i do not know if adpative algorithms are used by the source…

I did test with many sources and devices at home, for my ears they all sound the same, my source material is always the same, despite if on HDD or HDD of a NAS etc etc. The source for Roon servers used: MAC Mini, QNAP NAS, Synology NAS, Local attached HDD to Windows PC, Macbook Pro

Devices tested: MacBookPro, RestekMAMS+, Auralic Aries, Auralic Mini, Marantz AVR, several Laptops with Linux/Mac/Windows as Roon Bridges…

but grass grows and some can hear it

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This is the problem.
I have a Logitech Transporter, using SPDIF out to a Chord DAC, and a fixed volume at 100% makes a big difference. The only issue is that it only supports up to 96 khz.

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Jup since some people do not know that digital volume means cutting information…only if enough headroom is reserved it may not…

much to learn for some Padawans