I have enjoyed listening to high-res music for years. I’m not an audiophile ‘geek’ by any means and listen to most of my music digitally through my desktop PC using a pair of MM-1 speakers from B&W. I live in a small open plan apartment and am able to hear the music from my PC throughout the flat although I do have a separate hi-fi system in my lounge.
My PC, (Win 10), has an SSD where all my programs and all my non-music files are stored - this is where I would download any Roon software to. I have quite a large library of music, (all .flac files, mostly uncompressed and totalling about 8-900 GB), on a separate HDD drive. I DO have a smartphone and very much like being able to control music from there.
I’ve been reading different reviews about Roon and, obviously, the words on it’s own website, and I must admit to being rather confused as to whether Roon will suit me, given my circumstances of NOT listening on multi-devices or having multi rooms. I’d be really grateful if anyone could help solve my confusion by telling me if Roon would be suitable for me.
As much as I would like to answer your question, I must conclude that I don’t know how. How can anybody say if Roon will suite you or not when you don’t tell what you are looking for? You wrote that you are listening already to high-res music for years, so you probably don’t need a new player software for just that. You don’t need the streaming protocol Roon is built on, or at least you think so by now. This leaves you with the possible benefit of Roon’s enriched metadata and it’s presentation. If this is what you are looking for, then Roon might be the product for you. As Roon comes with a free trial period, it’s probably the best thing you can do to test it.
I started using roon mainly to replace a Mac connected to my USB dac running iTunes, and am now running multiple zones and endpoints, and augmenting my library with Quboz to play tracks I don’t yet own.
Even with sound leaking between your systems, it can sometimes be quite nice to group and sync them so you can hear the same music everywhere you go.
The extra metadata that roon adds on the remote apps is great.
Basically you should try it.
Main downside is the cost - but well worth it in my view.
You may also need to do a bit of work to your network and the computer running the core app to make sure they are up to the job.
And you will probably end up with a dedicated machine running roon core, and separate endpoints (even if they are raspberry Pis as mine are). But you can start with what you have!
One reason you might need Roon is the ability to control music from your phone. Another reason is to be able to use the PC and the hi-fi system as different zones and be able to control both from one app. And if you like Roon’s interface, that would be a third one. You might be able to find other uses also (like applying DSP for your headphones). But then again, for a small apartment, it might just be an unnecessary luxury.
Sorry for the delay, for all my love of Roon I slept tonight and not just listened to music.
Those who like to listen to Hi-Res will find many links and additions to their beloved music with Roon. Especially on the PC it is worth reading more backgrounds, biographies, reviews etc… Who is here in the community also learns a lot about music, technology etc…
If you use a PC, an external hard drive with music, speakers that convert digital to analog with hifi quality, you can get an extended experience of music discovery with Roon and also use your smartphone as a remote control, if it is not too old.
Already with a second PC (legacy device) or with the old analog HiFi building blocks could be set up multiple zones (playback situations headphones, B&W…) in the same room or in distributed rooms.
I also use Roon only in the living room, but could take my PC remote (other PCs or smartphone, tablet with headphones) anywhere as long as I have connection to my home network.
For buyers, the integration of Qobuz is interesting. Those who want to use a music service also have Tidal to choose from besides Qobuz. Thus, 70 million tracks are at the user’s feet, which can be sorted with Roon so that it suits the user’s music. There are more suggestions to discover. Roon and this community becomes a helper in finding new music, and all genres come into their own here.
Thank you so much for these articles. I read Part 1 thoroughly - you could have been writing about me in the bit where you wrote
"If your playback environment consists of a single audio system and you only have a small local music library that’s well organized, Roon offers little value. The enriched metadata overlay would improve the experience of navigating your collection and finding something interesting to play. However, the depth of associations and crosslinks will be minimal, with a library consisting of only a few hundred albums. You likely know your music well enough to quickly find what you want, without needing any advanced search, exploration, and recommendation tools. You don’t require sophisticated features to manage multiple playback environments with different capabilities and optimizations. You may not have other members of your household, each with unique preferences, using the system. I don’t want to talk you out of giving Roon a try, but if this sounds like you, Roon is unlikely to provide sufficient benefit to offset its $9.99 a month cost. "
Although I love listening to good quality music, it’s as background. I’m 70 and a baby boomer who knows what music he likes! As such, I’ve organised my music collection accordingly. I used the late lamented Winamp for years before moving onto Audirvana which I don’t like really. I’ve just had to get a new PC and I’m looking for a good quality piece of software to play my music.
I really don’t know if Roon’s the thing for me but I think I’ll give the free trial a go and see.
Before you give up on Roon think about the evolution of your music listening. If you expect your library to grow or if you think you might add a streaming service, Roon may be right for you. Only way to know is to try.