Network and Tidal integration questions about Roon Server installed on NAS?

Hello. I’m an old audio nut who is new to this forum. I’m looking to move up from my 5 year old Mac Mini/Audirvana player with a dedicated hard drive. My goal is to migrate my digital collection (about 1000 albums), and get access to Tidal. I enjoy building playlists, listening to them in random order, and I’d like to get Tidal integrated with my stuff. So, I’m in the design phase of the new system, and am considering either A) NAS – MicroRendu home network solution which has potentially more capabilities but is harder to implement; or B) a more dedicated streamer in the Aurender/Lumin mode which is easier to implement but limited in their apps. I’m thinking that leveraging the Roon metadata capabilities would add a lot of new dimensions to the listening experience, and I am doubtful that the Lumin/Aurender path will prove Roon capable. I do not currently operate a NAS, and am nervous about the complexities and pitfalls of setting up a network.

So I’m thinking that this forum might give some guidance on the home network solution, especially as it relates to Roon implementation. As I am just starting down this path my initial questions are pretty broad.

  1. Thinking about running Roon Server headless on NAS, then into a MicroRendu
    a) Does Tidal integration work in Roon headless NAS implementation?

  2. I’m working through some network wiring challenges due to limited flexibility in my home layout. I’m trying to figure out a way to use WiFi to bring the internet to Roon, as I will be unable to Ethernet hardwire the internet provider modem with the NAS.
    b) Working downstream from the Internet, first I would use the Comcast Modem/Wireless to WiFi the Internet onto my home network. Then an Apple Express would be Ethernet hardwired into both the NAS and the MicroRendu. My thought is that the Apple Express can get the Tidal stream from Comcast modem and provide it to the NAS, and the AE would also be a switch between the NAS and the MicroRendu. I would use other PCs for Roon management, and an ipad pro as a controller, all accessed by WiFi. Does anybody see problems with this?

Hope this was clear, and thanks for any thoughts you might have.


I would look into a sonictransporter. This is an already setup “NUC” with an easy to use interface.

I use one with a microrendu and it’s connected to my network via a wifi endpoint and I stream Tidal with only very occasional dropOuts The microrendu is also connected to one of the gigabit ports of the endpoint. The airport express only has one though. Probably better to use something else.

I connect a USB Drive direct to my sonictransporter and just use a NAS for backup purposes. This is much simpler if you are not that familiar with a NAS. To run Roon properly on a NAS you need a very powerful NAS and the sonictransporter and a basic NAS will be cheaper and simpler. Only hassle is an extra device that is on all the time.

Thanks, I clicked on the link. The transporter looks real interesting and I’ll do some further research.

I was in the same situation as you more or less. Mac environment with Synology DS713+ connected to Airport Extreme router in office upstairs and my listening area downstairs. I’m getting amazing results with the following setup…
In my office upstairs:
Comcast 75MBs via Motorola SB6141 modem >ethernet> Airport Extreme >ethernet> Synology DS713+ (about 1000 albums with Roon and Tidal integration)
In the living room downstairs over wifi:
Airport Express (joined to existing 5GHz network, not extended) >ethernet> SOtM sMS-200 (or mRendu) >USB> Chord 2Qute DAC >interconnects> Hegel H160.

Howard, if you don’t need a NAS specifically for anything else, and you’re planning to go Roon, why not just use any Mac, windows, Linux machine for the core - with your music locally attached. Then start with any of the hardware devices available from the raspberry pi upwards. Personally I only use my NAS for backup - prefer to just use a ‘normal’ computer for the core - which I think is better bang for buck, convenience, and speed. There are also the sonic transporters plus other hardware servers, and the upcoming DIY Roon Core kits.

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I’m reading a common thread to keep it simple… Use NAS for backup, if at all, and put the main library on local HDD, and use some computer-type device as the core. Simple is good. Regarding the core, I am interested in specialized device, e.g. sonictransporter, rather than a mac or pc, so i’m doing some research on that. The tricky part is figuring out how to wifi the core+rendu into the network. Airport express has only 1 LAN so it won’t work. Probably need some combination of a wifi bridge and switch. Also, my local ISP device is Xfinity Gateway, which is known sometimes not play nice with other equipment. That will give me something to get a headache about!

Anyway, thanks for the ideas!

I use a linksys re6500 which works fine with At&T U-verse. Can’t speak to xfinity I’m afraid gave up on Comcast a while ago I wish I could say AT&T was much better. But lets not get sidetracked on that.

If I understand things correctly you’re using an airport express to act as a wireless bridge?

My wireless router is a Asus RT‑AC87R which by most accounts has pretty solid wireless performance. I experimented with a wireless bridge to extend my network (using both apple and linksys/cisco) and found it troublesome and unreliable, but perhaps that’s just due to the layout of my house.

I’m running roon core on a mac mini that also serves as a HTPC in my living room. It’s connected to my Cary HT system in the living room using a USB to PDIF adaptor and also via Chord Mojo DAC. My challenge was getting music/internet to my bedroom (with a sonicorbiter feeding a Lyngdorf TDAI 2170) in the opposite side of the house on another floor. Since the sonicorbiter requires ethernet wireless extenders weren’t going to cut it.

I ultimately ended up using powerline adaptors (check out CNET Best Powerline adaptors) and then used an older router (Cisco-Linksys E3000) in the bedroom in bridge mode so it now serves as both a hub and another wireless access point. The latest powerline adaptors are getting pretty amazing throughput and in my experience have proven far more reliable than wireless. This also provided a couple of additional benefits:

  • I was able to hardwire more than one component (smart TV, PS3, Sonicorbiter), reducing latency and improving my ability to do other things like stream HD movies stored on NAS.

  • It allowed me to effectively extend my wireless network to the other side of house (so I could still use tablet to browse roon, and made use of other mobile devices far more reliable)

It sounds complicated but the only part that somewhat challenging is configuring the second router as a bridge (which is pretty simple really). The powerline adaptors are plug an play. I’d hesitate to plug a powerline adaptor straight into a microrendu or sonicorbiter since it’s likely to introduce a lot of noise from the power line, but putting even a simple hub in place should alleviate some of that and let Sonore do the rest.

If you want something less complicated I’d look into Google WiFi. I think each device has one ethernet port that you could connect to and acts like a bridge (I’m not positive but that is my understanding). For $300 you might solve your problem and end up with a great wireless network throughout your home.

Good luck.