Looking for a cheap Roon ready active speaker

That is quite a deal on these. I have two pair already in bedrooms, easy to use, Google assistant (if you’re into that). For this price more than respectable sound. I just ordered another pair to have on hand (possibly for the garage). Thanks for the link.

Shame on your it’s a great little box. Mines in use all the time in the kitchen.

IKEA Vappeby. Lamp and BT speaker. £60.

Sounds really good - up there with £150- 200 BT speakers (of which I’m reviewing some nice examples right now). Looks like a mushroom / Darth Vader’s helmut - quirky but fun. Battery or mains powered. And plays Roon nicely from a Pixel 7 phone (other Android phones are available!)

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Well that Vappeby is cool. But it’s not Roon-able, is it? Bluetooth speaker only?

:grinning: I agree, it’s a nice player. I’m sure I will find another use for it at some point. The sonos was a spare I had lying around, so I figured it was time to give it a run out. It blends in a bit better with the furnishings and also stops me stressing over the fact that I struggled to see the display on the Squeezebox when sat in bed. Getting old :frowning_face:


I mentioned the Bluesound Pulse 2i above. It is a Roon ready speaker but not cheap. The Pulse Flex 2i is $299. It should be recognized by Roon (the Pulse is). You can run them as stereo pair and has wireless and Ethernet connection. It is well liked on the Crutchfield reviews page. Is $299 cheap enough?

Yes, BT only. So I Roon’d it by using my Pixel 7 phone as Roon endpoint and BT’ing the sound to the Vappeby.

It’s definitely a quirky thing on looks. Sound wise it’s way above its pay grade though. A shame you can’t BT stereo to two speakers - left and right channels. I reckon that would be the best spend of £120 ever.

That is something that could do with becoming part of the standard BT ecosystem.
It just makes so much sense

My Google Nest Audios have arrived! Heavy little suckers – about the size of a pineapple, but twice as heavy. Now to try them with Roon…

Playing a Bach solo violin piece on one speaker. Sounds pretty good for a $45 active speaker! Now for a stereo pair…

The Devialet Phantom 1s or 2s are active speakers with renderer integrated.

To be fair everything is subjective, but… :wink:

Well, like someone else said: cheap will mean different things to different people. I have for several years now been running a small Roon endpoint in a place where a “stereo” just wouldn’t work. I’m using a Vifa Reykjavik speaker, connected to a Raspberry Pi running RoPieee and using an old USB DAC from Dunu I had lying around. The Roon connection could also be a Chromecast audio puck, if one can still be found on eBay.

The Vifa is a portable Bluetooth mono speaker, currently $200 on Amazon. Looks like a bigger version of one of those Google Home speakers - an unobtrusive beige/gray circular thing. I find its sound far superior to the run-of-the-mill portable speakers you find. It’s nominally a bluetooth speaker, but it has a 3.5mm jack which I have connected to the USB DAC’s output. The speaker has volume up/down and mute buttons, which is nice so you don’t have to pull out your phone to adjust.

The Pi can be hidden away behind the furniture, making a very nice music source that doesn’t get in the way. One benefit of using RoPieee is that you can connect an OSMC remote control to the Pi, and have another option for controlling the speaker’s sound that doesn’t require you to know anything about Roon. Just my two cents! Good luck in your search.

Thanks all - this really been very helpful.

Anyway the decision was made a bit easier when IKEA UK reduced its Symfonisk bookshelf speaker by 15% this month. Assuming they have not sold out I plan to order one tomorrow, a new Sonos speaker for £85 is too good to turn down. The wall mount will mean it will fit easily in the limited space and a single wire will keep the good lady happy. Annoyingly the vendor of the used by Sonos Play 1 I was chasing on Facebook Marketplace still hasn’t responded, but this Symfonisk will probably be pretty close in sound.

Don’t know where people are finding all these Raspberry Pi’s, none to be found here except at real scalper prices. I already have 2 as Roon end-points (and another three as various servers) but can’t source another one, especially Pi 4, cheaply.

Be interesting to see the Sonos system, a new one to me, but what do I care as long as it plays well with Roon.


Brian I’m sure it will make a good little setup.
if you can get 2 of them they make a nice stereo pair at a crazy low price

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For sure, everything is subjective, sound quality as well as prices. I just think that if anybody has or will afford Roon with its step price tag, they could be interested in the cheaper Devialet stuff.

WKW - I already have a couple of reasonable Roon setups - Cyrus amp and DAC with LS3/5A speakers for my main set up, and an Arcam Solo paired with Arcam Musos for my dining room secondary system, both driven by Raspberry Pis. My third Audiolab and Focal setup is also Roon ready via a Chromecast Audio but that is largely unused for Roon.

This bedroom system really is for very casual. occasional, in bed, listening. A Devialet would be waaaaay over the top for the use case. But they do look very interesting! Although, to be honest if I was spending that much money I’d probably look at a small Hifi amp and speakers on the used market. I’m aware that the Symfonisk/Sonos will be quite a compromise, especially as I intend just to use a single mono speaker but it will be more than good enough.

But I must go read up on the Devialet stuff - if it sounds as good as it looks …


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Just to close this - I did buy the IKEA Symfonisk Bookshelf (Sonos) speaker, currently on sale at £85 here in the UK (that’s $101 US). Works really well with Roon via Sonos (not tried Airplay). Initially a bit underwhelmed with the sound, good but a harsh edge but have just wall-mounted using the IKEA supplied bracket and now very impressed with the sound for such a simple set-up. Perhaps it needed a little running in.

For the bedroom mono is perfectly fine but for students wanting a really cheap starter system that could be repurposed later, then two in a stereo pair would be well worth consideration especially since there is a total lack of wires (except power) and wall mounting means that they ought work with most rooms.

Probably not the final word for audiophiles but certainly good enough for me as a bedroom system.

Only downside - the Sonos room eq software is only available on Apple rather than Android devices so I can’t use that to tweak it to the room.

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The room eq software is not good, at least this is my opinion. And just for your information.

Enjoy the music!

Use Roon’s DSP to tweak it.


Yes, I can easily do that - however the Sonos system is automatic, the speaker sends out (probably pink) noise and the iPhone’s mike detects it as you walk around and calibrates for the room. A bit like Audyssey for multi-channel AV systems.

To be honest I probably wouldn’t use it but it’s annoying I can’t even try and see if it makes any difference.