New user looking for setup advice (Nucleus+, Sooloos)

Hi all. I came from Sooloos Mc200, Qnap, Moon receiver, Harbeth spkrs. My 2-channel and av worlds completely separated. That was four days ago.
Then my Nucleus+ arrived and my local hifi shop’s tech guy set me up remotely. Couldn’t be more pleased but, and this won’t be news to you, I can’t group my zones. I assume I need a bridge? Please advise, but assume limited technical skills at this end.

System components at play:
Cable modem > router (Asus AC1900) > Nucleus+ > Dragonfly Cobalt > Moon 700i > Harbeth 40.1

Router above > Qnap TS-453A (approx 202k music tracks)

Router above > switch > Sooloos MC200 > Onkyo Receiver TX-SR800 > PSB speakers (5.1)

Also connected to above switch and Onkyo are set-top box, Roku, PS-3

I will pick up a Samsung 870 QVO 8tb Ssd when they are available in September to install in Nucleus+ and load all music there. I do have some music in the Sooloos that Roon cannot see and I understand that when I have the ssd I need to export the Sooloos files and playlists to it.

A little further down the road I will get a better DAC to feed the Moon. Will likely get something used through Hifi Shark. Any suggestions?

Here is where I am hoping you can help me:

  1. I would like to be able to group my 2 main zones (moon and av) and Roon does not seem able to do this with my setup. I think I need something that Roon can see, like a Pi 4 ahead of the Sooloos? What are my best options and how do I set it up (hardware and software)? I have zero experience with this sort of thing.

  2. We are using phones (iPhone X, Hwawei P30 Pro) to play to airbuds and Bluetooth speaker. Can they be part of the group? If so, how?

Sorry for the long read to get to the point but maybe it will save some questions. Gotta say that Roon is miles ahead of the Sooloos experience, which had previously made us very happy. BTW, when the trial ends we have elected lifetime.


If you like Moon Amp, take a look at their DACs. The 280D is a great value in my opinion. You can also get it with a roon ready streamer in it.

The basic idea is that you can only group zones that share a common communication protocol.
The best of all worlds are RoonReady endpoints as they communicate via RAAT (Roon’s protocol). The Pi4 endpoints do this very well.
Airplay is everywhere with Chromecast being pretty common too.
You’ll need to read more about setting up a RPi endpoint, but it’s pretty simple. You can buy one or you can assemble it yourself for around $100. It will take you about 30-45 minutes to put the pieces together.
I’m not familiar with using iPhones. But if they support Airplay they should be able to be grouped.

Thanks, I will root through the board to see what I should order and how to set it up. New question though, would a Pi4 ahead of the Sooloos communicate with the Nucleus+, or do I need one at both ends? I think that question should alert you that I am a neophyte!

And also thanks for 380d suggestion but I may have blown my budget getting to where I am. My hearing is 69 years old and I wear hearing aids to follow dialogue in some TV listening. But I don’t find them comfortable so never listen to music with them. What I am saying is that beyond a certain point I can no longer justify chasing sq I cannot distinguish. Realistically the cobalt dac can suffice until travel becomes possible again.

You only need a RoonBridge between the core and the music playing device. The RPi would be used as the RoonBridge. So the setup would look like this (for example):
Nucleus>ethernet>Router>ethernet>RPi (RoonBridge)>SPDIF>Onkyo>Speakers
Nucleus>ethernet>Router>ethernet>RPi>USB>Cobalt DAC>Moon>Speakers
I don’t know much about the SooLoos and how you are using it. As I understand your system, the Onkyo has a DAC built in, but does not have USB input. So the RPI would need to put out SPDIF which the Onkyo has, correct?
FYI, I put together a RPi with SPDIF out and this is what I used.
The regular RPi has USB out built in.