Multiple zones from one audio device

(David Espinosa) #1

I have an audio interface with 34 separate outputs.
Such interfaces are relatively common:

I would like to feed two separate stereo zones from my audio interface.
That way, my wife and I could listen to different music from the same library at the same time.
That would use four of my 34 available channels – two for me, and two for my wife.

Is that currently possible?

Also, if this request isn’t clear enough, please let me know, and I’ll try to explain it better.

Creating multiple zones on one output device - is it possible?
(bearFNF) #2

Do the devices show up in settings/audio in Roon? If so, just enable them and they should then be selectable as zones.

Where aree these outputs located? On a PC or on an audio system component?

(Rene Oskar Kuehne) #3

Hi @David_Espinosa

I also have an audiointerface with many analog and digital (SPDIF, optical & coax) outputs. However I am not able to feed even one of these outputs into Roon in a good (i.e. lossless) quality (see the remark below). How did you manage to make it run with one stereo channel?

Remark: It works for me with a somehow complicated setup, however the audio quality is not exciting. I have connected 2 outputs (currently I use analog channels but want to use SPDIFs in future) of the audiointerface (i.e. a stereo signal) with 2 inputs of the same audiointerface. The audiointerface (it is an Apogee Ensemble Thunderbolt) is connected to an Apple Mac mini. With the application Butt ( the audio signal is streamed to an Icecast server application (, both running on the same Mac. The Roon core server is currently (I have ordered a Roon Nucleus+ but it will be delivered only in April) also running on the same Mac. Within Roon I have set up the Icecast server as an Internet Radio station. With this setup I am able to stream one stereo output of the audio interface to Roon audio outputs. The same setup would in principle also work with more than one stereo channel and several radio stations, as long the audiointerface has enough outputs and inputs of the same kind. Since Roon (and maybe also the other involved software) currently only supports Internet Radio connections with MP3 and AAC, the audio quality is limited. The best quality which can be achieved is: stereo, 44.1 kHz, 16 bit, AAC with 320 kbps.

(David Espinosa) #4

Here’s how my device appears in the Audio MIDI Setup utility.
It’s a single device, with 34 outputs.
If I understand correctly, Roon only supports one zone per device.
That’s the limitation I’m hoping Roon can remove.

@bearFNF – I have an RME Digiface USB directly connected to a Mac Mini.
@Rene_Oskar_Kuehne – I think your problem is different. Maybe start a new thread for it ?

(Rene Oskar Kuehne) #5

Ok, that means that you do not want to bring an output of the audiointerface into Roon. You want to have the audiointerface as a Roon output device. Sorry for the confusion.

Could you please give some more information about your setup (i.e. the version with 1 stereo pair which you successfully use with Roon)?
a) Do you use the audiointerface “just” with the Mac system software (i.e. you have selected the audiointerface in the Sound System Preference as the Output device) or do you use it through another software (e.g. Pro Tools or Logic)?
b) If you are just using Mac system software: are you able to select freely which 2 outputs of the audiointerface (e.g. ADAT 5 and ADAT 6 for your stereo pair) you want to use as Roon outputs or can you use only the two with the lowest numbers (i.e. ADAT 1 and ADAT 2)?

(David Espinosa) #6

I’m using it only with Mac system software. The RME manual says:
“Programs that don’t support channel selection will always use channels 1/2, the first stereo pair.”

(David Espinosa) #7

Is there any news about feeding multiple zones from one audio interface ? Thanks…

(J A) #8

Hi all, also interestest in this. I have an Apogee Ensemble Firewire which I would like use as DAC for 2 diferent zones simultaneously. For this to happen I understand Roon would have to recognize various output devices instead of just one?

Alternatively, would there be any Apogee configuration that would present the device to OSX as more than one independent device?

Thanks all.

(J A) #9

Anyone else interested in this? Or perhaps anyone has discovered a workaround?

(David Gibson) #10

Just did a search for this topic. In my office system I use DSP to adjust for speaker location problems (ones much farther away). It works great. Problem is, I also use headphones often and I don’t want the imbalance on my headphones. I also use crossfeed with the phones that I don’t want on my speakers. Just wondering if a separate zone for the same output would be the answer for this use case. Seems like many users have different DSP settings for their speakers and phones and would benefit from some way to accommodate that.