ROON alternatives, software or hardware

Hi everyone, I have my Mytek Brooklyn Bridge bundled with 1-year ROON subscription free. The subscription renewal is due in May. The perpetual license price went up but is not as yet a deal breaker. How to say? Due to the price change I am more actively looking for alternatives.

This is my first streaming system, I can’t tell it is better comparing others, it is good sounding. ROON runs on ROCK on a fan-less Intel NUC. Streams over Ethernet to the Brooklyn Bridge. Streams over USB directly from the NUC did not sound good, may be due to noise and clock. Local FLACs and Tidal are the main source. Some MQA tracks on Tidal sound great. For FLACs, I play them mostly with upsampling to 24-bit and 176.4/192kHz depending on the original sampling rate. Good sounding to me. Upsampling does give improvements on my system with CD ripped FLACs in the highs and especially for sibilance.

I am searching for software or hardware alternatives, comparing to the perpetual ROON price. I need your help.

I like ROON because it rips my CD and has the upsampling feature. I do not like ROON because it has rather weak metadata for my CD ripped files.

I saw streamers such as the MELCO N100 that rips CD when you attach an external ROM drive which I already have for ROON, and the product integrates with gracenote (which seems to be the best possible metadata provider), the cost is acceptable given I will sell the fan-less Intel NUC, but it does no upsampling.

The other option I looked at is the Auralic Areis G2, it integrates with gracenote but for album arts, not sure it rips CD so I would still have to have another workflow to get FLACs, and to get the metadata right from my CDs. It does upsampling, but the cost of it would be an investment.

In terms of software alternatives, I looked at Audiravana, Daphile, and some other headless Linux based options. My concern is to configure them to sound good, sometimes options and different terminologies are overwhelming. In that sense ROON did a great.

What would be your thoughts?

Ken

Have you looked at anything from Innuos?

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Why would you look for a Roon alternative on a Roon forum?

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And many more

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As pointed out, the Roon forum probably isn’t the best place to get recommendations, but there are several alternatives if you look. Roons strength is obviously the rich metadata, followed by RAAT supporting multiple (synchronized) endpoints. With one endpoint, I’d probably use an Aurender N100 server/renderer, which has a nice iPad control app. At the other end of the spectrum, you could go diy and use a Raspberry pi with something like Rune or Volumio.

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And room correction/DSP.

Yeah, probably not the best place for getting advise like my case. Thought it is interesting to hear those who stayed with ROON and why.

Thank you, definitely something worth looking at.

Thank you, the N100 looks well built. Definitely worth looking.

Thank you bearing for “the question” and your responses. I might end up with buying another year. I planned for perpetual, even had invested in the fan-less Intel NUC, but now the price went up 40% … I will check in again in while and update. Cheers

if you are looking for something that offers the same amount of user interface comfort and simplicity as Roon you are likely to be out of luck.
You can achieve the same thing as Roon from a functionality point of view by using different products

  • Volumio for streaming from NAS, Qobuz and Tidal, multiroom
  • jRiver for DSP and Room Correction (no Qobuz)

But no all in one solution apart from Roon. Unfortunately once I’d used it, I wasn’t prepared to go back to the complexity any more

I’m here because Volumio is basically poorly supported and not tested prior to version release. I’m only 6 hours into the trial but at least it works

I think that if you want something stable and well supported you have to consider paying enough for that product to assure adequate levels of support going forward. The alternative is to go for hardware bound ecosystems such as BlueOS and stand alone options such as the software that powers Lumin streamers. They all do some of what Roon does.