Rhein Z1 Roon Server : official or unlicensed? [—> unlicensed]

Please do your homework before you spend money… Assuming your noise thing even made a difference at output, the Nucleus is a NUC board, and runs ROCK with some tweaks tailored towards passive cooling and differentiation (the home automation stuff).

I don’t know who makes their motherboard for Rhein, but it’s powered by a 2015 N3700 if I’m not mistaken and the images on their website are anything to go by. It seems to be cooled not by using the case as a sink, but by an independent heatsink inside a closed case, which seems rather stupid, because it turns that fancy case into an oven. That that thing is not presented as a $2000 joke* is not a testimony to smart hardware design, it’s an indictment of the people reviewing it.

  • there’s more to it than that, obviously, but for heaven’s sake people, we’re talking raw power that benchmarks in the same category as a $80 Raspberry Pi4. The delta with an 8th gen i3, so the thing you get in a Nucleus or can buy for a couple of hundred off Amazon is something around 3:1. But hey, the “mystery of extracting and purifying the essential music” and “keep the intactness of music”, eh.

You go to RoonLabs’ partners page, or if in doubt, you do what you just did and ask.

If I’m not mistaken, you have three options if you’d like something that’s licensed and turn-key: SGC, the rather wonderful but rather expensive Merging, and the ELAC, which has a long enough list of caveats that staying away from it is probably a good idea.

If you’d like official support, but don’t need the home automation stuff and you’re OK with installing ROCK yourself, and you’d like a Nucleus clone in the sense of a pre-built passive NUC in a pretty case, Cirrus7’s Nimbini line and I think PrimeComputer have you covered. If you’re comfortable building your own boxes, then get one of the supported boards, and look at passive cases from Akasa and HDPlex.


Thanks, to do my homework…thats why I am here for… :slightly_smiling_face:

I am using a Linn Klimax streamer with Linn Solo monoblocks for the amplification. Music source is Tidal and no own music library… Roon App as this is more sophisticated than Linn Kazoo. Looking for a Core solution for Roon, as now this runs from my laptop and is a temporary solution.

So I am looking into the following options:

  1. Roon Nucleus (std version) or other plug & play “music player”
  2. Imac mini solution
  3. Intel NUC solution

I don’t need a music player with a DAC as the Linn Klimax has one of the best amongst the industry.

So any suggestions are welcome.

If you’re sold on Roon, and accept that no, you will not be able to do anything else with a music server than serve music, then either Nucleus or NUC.

If you own a Crestron or Control4 system, then get a Nucleus.

If you want or need professional support from a dealer, then get a Nucleus or another one of the officially supported prebuilt solutions.

If you’re OK both with spending an afternoon assembling a computer and installing your own system, or have a friendly neighbourhood kid who’ll do it for a bit of money, then go NUC.

The concept behind the ROCK devices is that once they’re set up, they’re as maintenance free as possible. They try to be appliances, a bit like your fridge, but for serving music.

The compromise is that like you wouldn’t hook up your fridge to your TV, you can’t run Kodi or Plex on it or hook a NUC up to a TV to see the lyrics. If you want that from your server, then you should probably get a mac mini.

Once you have made those decisions, maybe head over to the appropriate section of the forum to ask more pointed questions (such as whether to get an i3 or an i7 NUC, for example, from your description, I’d say most likely i3, maybe i5, and also don’t forget that with a bit of patience, you can pick up a NUC7 or NUC8 second hand locally - total cost of such a setup with a passive case, pocket money for a teen, and a lifetime Roon licence would probably be less than buying a Rhein).


There is also Vortexbox/AudioStore servers in the UK that also run a version of the same OS as The SGC stuff .

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Hi Mark, I have trouble with Roon 1.8 and my Silent Angel RheinZ1 core. Everytime Roon can’t find my DAC (Mcintosh Roon endpoint). It only works again if I reset( turn off and on) the Rhein Z1.
As suggested the Rhein Z1 is continue powered on.
How are your experiences with the Rhein Z1?

Hi Arjan, I cannot give you an answer. I returned the Rhein as soon as I figured out it was not yet supported. I am sorry.

Hi Arjan, I have been using a Rhein Z1 since February this year. As an endpoint I use a Linn Akurat and I have no problems at all. Not even with Roon 1.8