Hopefully I won’t annoy people with this question. I just downloaded Roon and Audirvana. I think the GUI of Roon is so much better than A. I want to keep Roon and get rid of A. However, I noticed a sound quality difference between the two. It was especially noticeable when I was A/Bing and playing Yes’s Roundabout. Audirvana just sounded better, more articulate. Anyway, I’m sure there’s a way to tweak Roon. Are there any recommended settings that I should try?
BTW - My current setup (which will change probably in a couple of weeks):
PC>MyDac>Jolida 1501RC>Onix RS750s
Do you have exclusive mode enabled for the device?
The biggest difference between Roon and Audirvana is that Roon is very resource intensive on you computer. It’s possible noise passing from the computer to the DAC via the USB connection could affect the sound. Roon recommends a network connection for best results to give galvanic isolation.
On quality computer (with low noise) and a DAC capable of good noise rejection, the difference between USB and ethernet can be very small. But change these variables and you can get a different outcome.
Thanks. Yes, I have exclusive mode enabled. My PC is pretty beefy and should be able to handle the load. Whether it is quiet enough I don’t know. I would assume that if there are noise issues it should affect both Roon and Audirvana, correct?
Has no one told you about Roon’s Audirvana plug-in?
What is it? This is new to me, I am interested.
I think Slim is pulling your leg…
As in implementing an equaliser setting or such…
Not necessarily. Roon has a heavier computing footprint than Audirvana. See here. More processing can mean more noise.
What you seem to be asking is how to make a heavier bit-perfect player sound like a lighter bit-perfect player. The only sensible suggestion is to change topology and separate the Core from a lightweight network Output.
That’s what I figured but who knows…
What Andrew suggest is wise though, try separating the somewhat dirtier back end from a light weight front end, such as a Raspberry Pi with Roon Bridge on it.
Correctly configured (no biggie) this should sound pretty much the same as an Audirvana setup.
I was trying to avoid that. As much as I like Roon, I’m not sure I want to invest a ton to make it sound like another program that already sounds good. Not trying to be a jerk by saying that.
Sure. And we’re not trying to be jerks by saying it’s not necessarily simple.
Roon have also published recommendations for SQ using a single computer. That might be of assistance.
In particular, you can run both Roon and RoonServer on the same computer. Use the Roon program to control the RoonServer Core. That way you can exit the Roon program while the music is playing. You could also control the Core from an iPad or phone.
Thank you for the tip. I’ll check that out today.
I’m trying some different settings now to see what happens but I’m sort of shooting in the dark.
I have ASIO and WASAPI. Any benefit to ASIO over WASAPI?
Should I turn on Sample Rate Conversion or any of the filters?
Dependant on your DAC, some offer more sample rates and DSD using ASIO some under WASAPI. Upsampling again is dependent on the DAC as some work better when fed their native internal rate, some swear by it others not so, for me it sounds worse , I just leave my DAC to do any of that stuff. If your already convinced it sounds worse than AudiVarna then upsampling likely to not improve and add more noise.
While noise and processor and CPU load can be issues, the deeper truth is that the Audirvana and Roon sound engines are programmed by different people. It’s not about bit perfect playback all sounding the same, that’s simply not true. If you prefer the sound of Audirvana, your only hope is to try different Roon EQ settings to alter the sound to your liking, although that is a less than ideal route. The only other way is to try HQPlayer which can replace Roon’s sound engine. It does all get expensive as HQPlayer runs $250.
From what I gather, Roon sounds best in something like their Nucleus. Roon all on once computer will simply never sound as good as Audirvana. HQPlayer is your only option.
I’ve been down this long dusty road already. With Amarra, Audirvana and Roon. For me, the best solution was Roon + HQPlayer. I would not pay for Roon without HQP.
It’s been years since I used Audirvana but from memory I can say my Audirvana set-up was brighter, more sparkly, a little more dynamic with a bit more punch. I could adjust this with changing the iZotope filter (yes, been a while since I used Audirvana). It was wonderful at the time but as I let go of Audirvana and listened to Roon exclusively I realized I had cranked-up the sparkle in an unnatural way. I think Roon, out of the box, is slightly flatter but more accurate. It’s a little recessed but provides much better holographic imaging and depth. It’s not as in your face dynamic but controls dynamics in a more commanding way.
Suggestion I didn’t see… crank-up the upsampling. This can get you closer to Audirvana as some DACs perform better fed a higher bitrate from the source.
Anyway… lots of good suggestions here but the one suggestion I’d like to stress is “give it time”. They do sound different. I’m now strongly in the “I prefer Roon” camp. Good luck.
Thank you for that. HQ seems pricey at $250. I can’t imagine what it does. Time to do some research.
I will check out upsampling.
Adding more processing load to an already busy Core is not going to improve your situation. Are you sure that you don’t have a desktop computer somewhere in your house that you can use to run Roon Server? Doesn’t have to be dedicated. Roon Server has no UI and just runs in the background.
Your current configuration seriously handicaps Roon’s sound quality. This can only be solved by proper set up, not fiddling with settings. Follow the manufacturers instructions for best sound quality or live with inferior results.