Mac Skipping Tracks

Hi all,

I have simular problems in my setup:
I have an iMac 2019 8-core, 128gb ram. Internal 2Tb NVME and 8gb SSD, external 64 TB Thunderbolt 3 Raid. Library size is about 755.000 tracks.

Lets reduce to the base: even if I use Roon on the internal speakers of the iMac, the skipping of songs happens randomly and it‘s often frustrating. It has nothing to do with the songs themselves that were skipped, because maybe 10 minutes later they might play.

Nevertheless there seems to be some kind of scheme when it comes to skipping:
After starting Roon, having read in the database and checking the synchronized folders there’s mostly no skipping. If I let the music play song after song in one of my playlists, everything works.

If I then choose by hand some song the problem begins mostly. Longer Roon sessions produce the skipping problem more often. Sometimes then after the skipping occurs again repeatedly, I have to start a very long playlist and be patient to get songs playing again. Then, maybe after 100 or 200 skips finally a song plays. Then, when I want to play a different song, skipping occurs again. I can then repeat the previous procedure or I wait for some seconds after songs of a whole album skipped. After some tries with this tactics, Roon again begins playing some song of the album but not the chosen one.

After some more tries of this last mentioned procedure in most cases I get Roon to work again normally…
Due to an advice of La Rosita, the company of my used streamer, I deleted my synchronized folders and relocated them. It didn‘t help, so I did it again but the skipping problem persisted.
I had the problem under MacOS 10.14, 10.15 and now under Big Sur.

System performance is not the problem, too, as my Roon database is responsive despite the large size of 63 GB. I even located the Roon database on a RAM disk. Everything became a bit more responsive but the skipping problem persisted.

Normally I use a Devolo Powerline Adapter, but the problem persists when iMac and streamer are directly connected to my FritzBox 7590 router via LAN cable.

I had the problem from the beginning on I used Roon, since october 2020.
All in all the skipping problem is frustrating. If you’re in the mood to listen to your beloved music and skipping happens, it‘s a kind of lust killer and you don‘t go on with it.

So after all, this problem in my practical experience has nothing to do with network, system performance, library size or data location. But mostly Mac users have this problem.

For me Roon is the best sounding audio software I know and has the best user experience when it comes to building up a personal woven database of your own music. It can be pretty responsive even with large libraries, too. But when no solution for the song skipping problem is found, it lacks at the base - simply play the music of your desire.

If there is no convenience at this point, I don‘t need this stuff around my music, that Roon does for sure really good. This fundamental lack in the Roon software has to be solved!!!

I‘m on Mac since 30 years, I don‘t want to go a different way. I would more likely leave Roon. Working with a stable system that I can handle is far more worth for me than an audio player. In my 21 years with computer audio I went through different stages. Starting as an amateur with collecting music in mp3 format and building up a reliable database, everything on Macs. Wright, I began with iTunes as you can guess. But by the time players changed, music formats, too especially when I began to listen to music in earnest, as an „audiophile“. Then equipment came and went. And so on an don…

But what stayed is database caring and handling, by the time in an enhanced and more experienced way. Though I had some minor data losses - who has not. Takes time, for sure much time, but hey, it‘s a hobby!

There might probably come the time when Roon is no more state of the art and there are better audio players. You never know. What stays with me is always my assorted, tagged and growing database to use for whatever audioplayer might come out to use.


1 Like

Hi @Bernd_Ruths1 ,

I’ve split your post into its own thread, I suspect that this may be the issue:

At the present time, MacOS is not the best choice for very large databases, with a library of this size, you’d want to use hardware dedicated to just music server functionality, but there are also some MacOS performance improvements in the pipeline, please see:

Hi Bernd, you have a huge library. On the face of it your core machines should be up to the task, so that would tend to suggest network issues. The first place I would start is by running your ISP router as a modem and buying a much more powerful router to service your network - ISPs cheap out on their gear, and the FritzBox is probably not up to the task of supporting the amount of network traffic you must be generating. I suspect you might see a significant improvement running your core machine via ethernet to a decent router - although depending on how much other gear you would be connecting via ethernet to that router, you may also want to put a switch in between. Also, if you have not already done so, point your DNS to Cloudflare ( rather than your ISP’s default.

Good luck!

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