Opinion Please - Which server for Roon with HQPlayer

I am not replacing my AVR. The 2020 model is of no use to me. I don’t need 8k capability. I may get the new 65" Panasonic when it’s out in July. But again, not a must.

Had a long chat with an audiophile today. I learned stuff I didn’t know. He was not up himself and was very pleasant and soon cottoned on to my way of speaking being caused by my neuro problems and not drunk or high or stupid which really helped.

I have come to realise, because it makes sense, that the use of a Mac for my Roon/HQPlayer and music is not ideal and also using a plug in cd player to rip cd’s is a pain.

So I am thinking of buying this:

Have not yet decided on version but would definitely buy one with a cd ripper if I buy one.

I can plug this into my DAC and I can use my external devices super fast drives for storage, one being 4tb but I guess I would not use that.

The USB is only 2/3 which puts me off. I’d much prefer a Thunbderbolt 3 connection.

I guess I can search for servers now I understand what they are.

I also know how to say Sonore! I didn’t understand what the rendu is.

One possible issue might be HQPlayer. The machine can have both Roon and HQPlayer on it but he wasn’t sure about moving HQP from my MBP to this machine or using it the way i do-not on it’s own but thru Roon. To be frank he told me to speak to Jussi about it but I am not sure what he thinks the problem could be.

Also, I have written to the two addresses I have for Jussi who has been very helpful previously but over the last couple of weeks no responses at all. I wonder if he is okay. Does anyone know?

Lucky for me, I now can use ethernet cables once again in this room. It was so simple I had not thought of it!

We can check in with the Guru here @jussi_laako

Go to Computer audiophile Forum.Lot more info for HQPlayer and Jussi is always on it.

I prefer to build my own server. That way I know what the CPU and CUDA capability is and what I can expect it to do in HQPlayer.

I cannot tell from the linked web page what version, if any, of this server would handle upsampling to 256 DSD with EC modulators in HQPlayer. From the graph provided it seems clear that the entry level would not. Single core performance is the important spec for HQPlayer.

I appreciate the response but have no idea what you mean. I not a techy so using your language means nothing to me.

My present set up upsamples to 128 with no trouble. It did have a problem when I tried a setting in HQP which the person did warn me my Mac might not handle and he was right.

I don’t want or need DSD 256. Yes, it would be nice to have a super capability set and if I had lots of money I would but it would still be a waste.

The reason for ME that I find this idea appealing is the cd ripping included, it comes with many software options and Roon and HQP and Qobuz thru ethernet. This Prestige 3 has many build options.

I liked the rear connections on the Nucleus but not the lack of anything else like storage.

kind regards

Thank you kindly.

The Nucleus has storage. You just have to buy it and install it. That way, you can get what you need. It takes about 5 minutes to open up and install your SSD of choice.

Oh great. Thank you kindly. Does it enable one to use HQPlayer as well? Like I use it as a plug in to Roon now. Both on my MBPro. Will it stream Qobuz? I now have an Ethernet connection so not concerned about that.

The advantage for me about the prestige 3 is being able to have the built in cd ripper. It may seem a small thing but to me it is a big thing. The more moving of any part of me causes more pain and more fatigue thus cutting out as many steps as possible is best for me.

Right now in order to get CDs onto my storage, I have to do them in a slow external drive, then transfer them to my external storage.

To my horror I have discovered that many of my CDs have been recorded in MP3. I would never have done that deliberately so must have done it post head trauma of May 2014.

I dread having to re-record these CDs but it does need to be done.

kind reagrds

Would I be able to pulg in my cd player to the rear of the Nucleus and have it rip the music str8 to the SSD I would have put in? (I feel confident I can put in an SSD drive as I did it in a Mac all by myself and din’t fail.)

I use my Nucleus to stream Tidal and Qobuz. I have only a handful of my own albums.

I know nothing about HQP.

You can use the Nucleus for ripping from an attached USB connected CD drive, but you need to search for that here. I don’t know much about it.

No, but -


Hi Slim-don’t get that about Rock but it rather defeats the object for me if I would still need to run a computer. Never mind that there would be no room.
kind regards

One thing I now know and have is the Roon app for my phone. So much easier to use than screen share BUT if the MBP has gone to sleep the remote will not wake up the MBP to play Roon despite Roon being open when it went to sleep. Still just a very minor thing compared to the ease of use for me of the app.

Oh and I won’t be going for the Nucleus. IF I go ahead and buy a server it will be the Prestige 3 with extreme power, as it is referred to, and the built in cd ripper. A much simpler solution for me.

I asked what a microrendu was and not sure I understood. This is what I think it does:

It sits between the MBPro or server and the DAC and the music goes thru that before it gets to the DAC and it does something which would be noticeable to our ears. It was suggested I got that before I got a server.


The thing with getting a server is I then have 4 brand new Macs, varying from 1 month old to 6 mths old.

I use the iMac for photography and one of the 1TB SSD MBPros for that what I am doing right now. I have a 256gb MBPro which is my take away laptop when we can next go away. We should have just arrived bck from Frankfurt and am hoping to be able to drive to Barcelona for an open ended trip September 1th but have a nasty feeling we will be in the midst of the 2nd Wave by then and will not be able to go.

Anyway, as I write qwqhixch does help my brain work, I am comin g to the conclsuion that maybe the advice I got about getting a rendu first is good. He did say I may decide i don’t want a ser ver after that.

Now at the moment there are settings in HQPlayer which my MBPro cannot handle but maybe the rendu can and that is why it fits bewteen the MBP and the DAC.

I’d be grateful for an explanation in layman gtwrms of what this rendu thing does and which of them ought I to get?

kind regards

That device is for when one wants to stream thru a network; Ethernet in/USB out.
If you are using a USB connection direct from your Core, then you wouldn’t use an mR.



I would describe it as a bridge from your network to your DAC and sound system. It’s supposed to improve SQ, but I question that.

If you have four Macs, seems like you could use one of those to run your Roon core. On the other hand, a music server such as Nucleus or NUC or others is a really nice thing to have. It runs 24/7 and requires little or no attention. I have a Nucleus and it has been flawless for 6 months.

As I said above, I know nothing about HQP but I would not hesitate to run it one of your computers if need be.

Hi @Jim_F,
I belive the OP is looking for a server that can run both Roon and HQP … if so that runs out the Nucleus as that is stickly Roon only.

These can run both Roon and HQPlayer Embedded and are fanless (silent):


You can ask @agillis @vortecjr about an i9 model for ripping CD’s too.

Note the cost of Roon license and HQPlayer Embedded license is extra/separate to those prices.

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No, HQP can run on it own machine and Roon can still connect to it. However, reading the OP’s first post I don’t think he is looking to do that.

@Knitman, could you clarify please.


Giving alternative options is fine … but they need to provide full details including limitations otherwise they could lead people down the wrong path. Whilst a Nucleus is a good piece of kit it’s not a panacea for every situation / need.

That was discussed.

Thank you kindly to all who have responded.

What does OP mean? Old Person? :wink:

I know I do not want a Nucleus and now I know I do not want a rendu either.

I feel more and more inclined to get the Prestige 3 with high specs but with only a 1TB SSD as I have several 1, 2, and 4 TB SSD thunderbolt 3 drives.

At present I only have a 500gb library and that will be made bigger because as I mentioned previously after my head bang I must have recorded many CDs again because they are in MP3. I would not have done that well. I cannot imply convert them because there is no way to get the bits MP3 chuck out back. I haven’t asked anyone that, it just seems obvious to me that to make an MP3 it chucks stuff away so I can’t see how recovering them to FLAC or AIFF would not improve them.

So if I don’t just stay with the way my set up is, Roon Core is my MBPro, HQP is also on same, I use Roon but with HQP plugged in.

The only uncompressed files I an think of are WAV or AIFF. WAV leaves much to be desired as regards metadata as to make it not usable. Most of what I have are FLAC tho I cannot get my head around it being compressed but not compressed. Iread an explanation that suggested I think of FLAC as a zip file. That was of enormous help assuming I was told good in for.

The important thing is that I appear to be learning more each day about all this stuff. I enjoy the learning.

For now I am seriously considering the Prestige 3 server if/when I buy a swevr.

In the meantime I’ll continue learning here.

Kind regards