RAAT [was Roon Speakers] - What , When, How and for Whom?

Will Roon Speakers on Raspberry Pi 2 just use the Vanilla hardware thus only USB output or will add on boards like HiFi Berry Digi and Dac be supported?

Any device that supports ALSA should work.

Are these Roon Speakers all audio only or will they be visual as well? I’m thinking of something like Chromecast to stream music to and display artist info / album art etc.

This will be implementation dependent–most of our integrations will not have a screen.

For those that do, a simple screensaver-style display will be possible. Same goes for devices with transport controls (like the Apple TV).

Not sure whether all of that will make it into the first release or not, but it’s in our plans.

Obviously, audio is the priority, but it would be very cool if there was an optional screensaver type video to go with it. I could see having it on the TV (via AppleTV) when hosting a party, for example. Even better would be if there were screensavers that updated based on the music – like iTunes has.

Cool thanks. That is what I was looking for. I think the screen-saver-style will work nice for endpoints like Chromecast or AppleTV.

This would place an unnecessary load on the server and compromise sound quality.

And sometimes that is perfectly acceptable. I would never use Chromecast or Apple TV in an audiophile system anyway.

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Would the existence of the option affect SQ ? The option for volume levelling or crossfading doesn’t seem to.

It really depends on the network bandwidth and the end-point processing power. When I watch an HD movie on my AppleTV, I find the sound quality to be quite good. However, I hope no one who truly cares about sound quality is primarily using an AppleTV. I use a USB connection from my Mac to my Auralic VEGA when I’m really sitting down to listen. AppleTV is just for convenience/background listening at my house.

Side note, if there was a Roon app for the upcoming Apple TV, the video for a screensaver could be generated on the AppleTV instead of being streamed. I believe it will have the same processor as the latest iPhones.

No, if the video was turned off, it would not effect sound quality. (This is speculative, since it does not exist yet.) If the video was turned on and the network did not have sufficient bandwidth or the end-point was underpowered to handle the feed, then it would have a sound quality difference. That is true when you stream movies today. The audio/video automatically down samples if there is not enough bandwidth. Generally it is not very noticeable. If you really care about absolute sound quality, AppleTV might not be the best choice for you.

There would need to be an app resident on the AppleTV, so it wouldn’t be any different than streaming through an Android tablet while running the UI currently. Granted streaming through an Android tablet (and to a somewhat lesser extent, through an AppleTV) is more about convenience than absolute sound quality.

No app required. Airplay supports both audio and video. Right now, Roon just streams audio over Airplay, of course.

Considering how the iPad hardware requirements went over, I suppose that requiring the gen4 Apple TV for display support (via app) probably wouldn’t go over well either.

I guess you are very opposed to offering a video “screensaver” option, because as I just said, no app is required. There is no reason that Roon could not continue to offer AirPlay audio streaming while also offering optional video streaming of a screensaver (eq meters, psychedelic swirls, whatever). They could, and probably will, additionally offer a Roon AppleTV app which would offer a GUI that runs on the AppleTV. None of these things are mutually exclusive. They all require development time, but I trust Roon to understand the market/customer needs and schedule appropriately. Anyway, I think this would be cool, but certainly not any kind of priority to me.

Maybe there is a misunderstanding here. We are discussing using the AppleTV as an end-point, not as a remote control. Yes, to use it as a remote, you would need an app which would require the upcoming AppleTV.

To solve some terminology confusion, when I say “screensaver” I mean something like what you get in Roon when you press Ctrl/Command-S (the “S” is for screensaver), or on an AppleTV today when streaming via Roon–a display of album artwork and some basic metadata.

Back in the Sooloos days we called that screen the “screensaver” because on the Control:* devices, it activated automatically after a period of inactivity. The nomenclature stuck.

Got it, I had ATV4 w/ app support on the brain… rather than streaming A/V via AirPlay to an ATV from Roon.

Just curious if there’s any release for Roon Speakers coming now that Roon is really stable. I’m dying to use my iPad with my remote setup in another room while connected to my stereo. The App is pretty useless for me until that happens.

Same for me. I have an extra Mac ready to use in my living room but need roon speakers to easily use it. Any idea on the release date? Everything else is working great for me except for the play from here function on my iPad Air 2 remote.

I don’t have a firm date, but we made a lot of progress on RoonSpeakers in September…it’s a top priority right now to get it out the door. I’d be unhappy if it wasn’t released by sometime in November. That’s a goal, not a commitment :slight_smile:


Can’t wait for the iOS app that can turn my old iPhones (3GS, 4) into RoonSpeakers to hook up to my existing multi-room setup.

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Thanks Brian. It’s good to know it’s on the horizon. This will make a fantastic product indispensible.