Low cost DSD capable Roon Bridge with USB output for DAC

I am looking for a low cost based DSD CAPABLE Roon bridge. (under £500 - e.g. based on RaspberryPi)

I have an Auralic G1 driving my Chord Dave in my main room,(Absolutely STUNNING performance) but I have two other systems in the house (much cheaper systems ) and want to be able to “Roon enable” each system. I’m obviously not expecting anything like the performance level of the G1/DAVE combo.

I would just buy 2 Auralic Aeries Mini’s but in their wisdom Auralic have deliberately not enabled Roon on this?

At least half of my music is DSD - I have LOTS of classical - so please don’t reply with PCM only solutions as I am not at all interested in those nor any arguments about PCM vs DSD - I’ve read, all that and carried out extensive tests over more than a decade. My collection is 99% DSD 64 I don’t really need DSD 128 or 256.

The Dacs I have in these other rooms are the Chord Qutest and Teac 501. I currently use Macs to drive them.

From what I have read about Raspberry Pi add ons e.g. HifIBerry - they don’t support DSD and the Roon server will have to output PCM to it, which I don’t want. Chromecast the same.

Has anyone else managed to build or find anything that can do this without the usual audiophile price tag?

I’m using 4 RoPieee powered RPi endpoints: 2 Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital’s, Allo Boss and Meridian Explorer 2. Also 3 BluOS endpoints: NAD T777v3, Bluesound Node 2 and Bluesound Pulse Soundbar. Happy Roon user. :sunglasses:

1 Like

Which HATs? Are you using USB output?

1 Allo Boss HAT, others are USB.

So the usb out from Pi is good enough for DSD despite bandwidth shared with ethernet?

That works with the Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital.
This is on my headphone system.

The Technics gear is currently being refurbished.
In the mean time I’m using an S.M.S.L SA-98E amp.


If you want a device that does not share a controller between ethernet and USB, go for an Odroid C2.
I have several of them in service, using dietpi / roon bridge. I haven’t tried DSD512, but DSD256 works without any issues.

It’s £600 so slightly more than the £500 limit, but have a look at the Pro-ject Stream Box S2 Ultra. I’ve just checked the specs and it goes to DSD256.

I’ve got one in for review and have just fired it up - last night. Early days but sounding very nice so far - a step up from my Allo USBridge and Digiones (as it should be for the price).

It’s RPi based (Ropiee I think - must check!)

Edit - I meant Volumio based, doooh.


1 Like

Roon DSP can upsample to DSD512 on the Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital. See the pics above.
I’m happy with the SQ on my Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital setups:

  • S.M.S.L SA-98E amp with Dali Opticon 8 speakers
  • Aune X7s class A headphone amp with MrSpeakers ETHER C Flow headphones on XLR balanced
1 Like

Perhaps a Celeron Nuc8.

Install Linux (Ubuntu) and Roon endpoint software.

What’s with the door stops.
Darko has a lot to answer for.
lol. Pure Placebo.

I just used it to keep the RPi in place.
Today the SMSL amp has been replaced by a refurbished vintage Technics SU-8600 and the RPi is powered by a PoE hat and it lives in the Technics Rack, and I added a miniDSP DDRC-24 with Dirac Live.

My suggestion.

RPI4… has no issue doing DSD via USB. The controller is not shared.

Add this…

and this…

Assuming you have a DAC a with a good USB implementation, I.e. fermento clock or similar, this solution would rival streamers up to $3k aud.