Roon and CXN/DSD disappointment. DSD suggestions please

Now it should show up in Roon.

Odd , I am no Linux Guru

The M-DAC and the AudioQuest DragonFly Red both appeared in split seconds.

Maybe once you have some thoughts we could involve Cambridge Audio Support, I have always found them very keen to sort stuff out


But do you see the CXN now? The logs suggest that, I can see that Roon detected it.

Yes it does


So it sounds like the USB Class 2 that’s causing it . Is this USB Class 2 thing a common thing or is it a Cambridge Audio Special ?

For now I’ll revert to Ethernet CXN and RPi M-DAC as it was.

I can still run JRiver to CXN at 192 and DSD and hence to my phones so its not a big issue

It would be nice to sort it if possible

I’m glad Roon is “Blameless”

Ok. Yes, this is related to the Cambridge Audio.
So far what I can see is that the CXN is not ‘behaving’ properly as an USB 2 device, hence it’s being rejected by Linux.

Roon just ‘asks’ the operating system (in this case Linux) which USB audio devices are connected, so that’s why it goes wrong.

The best way to get this sorted out is if CA is fixing their USB configuration. Challenging part here is that most devices are not capable of updating the USB firmware specifically.

If you contact them feel free to put me in the loop so I can explain it to them.


Thanks for all the help, I’ll raise it with CA Support



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See the end of the thread :weary:


That is disappointing. I used to know someone who would have been able to expedite this, he got my old mk 1 840A sorted outside of its warranty period for me but he hasn’t been employed with them for a while. I do like their kit so it is a shame this has gotten through the net. Linux working is a thing, they should know that this is becoming as important as Windows and Mac working.

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At least we got to the issue , thanks to Harry

I am raising a ticket with their support when I can fish out my serial no !!!


I have to chime in here because it reads like you’re not giving Roon a fair chance and so far haven’t demonstrated that things are indeed connected correctly. @spockfish has been gracious in offering assistance, but you’ve got to work with him.

Roon is clear about the devices it works with and it would seem that the issue is with the CXN.

Hi Martin, I’m not sure you understand my issue. I have Roon working with my CXN. The problem is with a wired network, my CXN and Roon it is impossible to play my DSD files. All Mac roon CXN defaults to Airplay and always defaults to 44/16.
It isn’t a case of not giving Roon a fair go. It simply doesn’t do what I thought it might whereas other players do play DSD with the Mac/CXN combo.

There are a number of replies to this thread that demonstrate that Roon can see the CXN over a wired network. It also unclear what you have tried and what device you use for transport, i.e. the component between your Roon core and the CXN USB input.

It is also evident that there is an issue with the CXN USB, but Roon will recognise this if you switch to USB1 in the CXN. Have you tried these things? There’s also a reference to Roon, DSD and CXN in the thread from a CXN owner.

I understand that this is frustrating. The Roon community is here to help you, but you need to assist by providing the feedback needed and this mean details of your setup and how you have connected everything. The fact that you can’t see the CXN in Roon (other than an Airplay device) suggests that it’s not connected correctly.

I’ve done some digging and found this from 12 months ago on hifiwigwam:

Bart (Cambridge Audio)

May 8, 16:35 BST

Thank you for contacting Cambridge Audio.

The CXN supports DSD x64 (AKA DSD64 or 64FS- Including DSF/DFF).

The DACs used for the CXN aren’t capable of playing native DSD files so the signal does needs to be converted to PCM.

If you require any further information or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us again.
Kind Regards,

Cambridge Audio.

Nonetheless, you should be able to play DSD via the USB input even though it does the conversion to PCM within the CXN.

Which is my point Roon doesn’t play DSD with CXN and why I started the thread. I’ve never had any problem with Roon seeing the CXN over the network and I have used all the USB connections , I know what I’m doing with the CXN.
My disappointment is that media players do play DSD in the CXN over my network. I don’t know why this isn’t just conceded in this forum.
I’m interested in finding hardware (another DAC/player) that will play DSD over my Ethernet network using Roon from my MAC desktop, laptop, iPad and phone. That would be advice I’d appreciate.

Mark, Roon speaks the RAAT protocol, the others you use have open protocols such as UPnP. That is something we all know and has been discussed to death. We know it is the reason why Roon and the CXN cannot communicate by any means other than Airplay. So our concern is just to try to find a way to get you working.
Companies that make Roon compatible devices are listed on the Roon website. You can sort through them to find something you like. Or you can use a bridging device. These range from the cheap and cheerful Pi’s to UltraRendu’s at several hundred pounds and work in to your CXN USB port. Or you can use Mac or Windows devices running Roon ridge.

What do you mean by this? You use the CXN as an Airplay device? What do you see when you connect the CXN to your Mac via USB? Is it listed in Roon? Can you play PCM files successfully?

Apple doesn’t support native DSD so you’ll need to use DOP (something to do with ASIO.) Although this is moot since the CXN can’t play DSD either (it’s doing the conversion that Roon could do for you.)

It would be really helpful if you described how you have things connected, including what you’ve plugged into the back of the CXN, plus a screenshot of your device settings and the signal path. You may believe you’ve done this, but what you’ve said is unclear.

As mentioned, others have achieved what you’re trying to do with the CXN, so we want to help, but you need to help us help you.

As far as I can tell the CXN doesn’t play nicely with Linux so I am effectively stuck with 96 , since my Headphone Amp / DAC Audiolab M-DAC does the same via USB I gain nothing except another device in the chain

Roon upamples to352.8 and then down to 44.1 to pass as Airplay

My guess is that if I plug RPi back into the CXN the Upsampling will be the same the Downsampling will be 96. I’ll try it tomorrow and report back

CXN needs DSD to PCM to feed, this is how JRiver does it, it’s simply not native DSD, it’s all via DSF anyway

I hope I’m not muddying the wate more


Not all endpoints are Linux. A Windows based endpoint would do what you need and do it in Native DSD. Obviously a Windows device will be more expensive than any of the small SBC’s out there but without the disadvantage of Linux and the CXN. Something running a Cherry Trail CPU would be enough to run RoonBridge and start at around £70 Sterling from China.

Thanks Martin for your replies and help etc. I understand how my CXN works with Roon and I’ve never had a problem with Roon seeing the CXN whether through wired or wireless network or with USB 2 and MAC laptop connect with USB audio cable a back of CXN. My whole point had been lack of DSD play with Roon and CXN and my disappointment with Roon compared to other software. This can’t be fixed. Roon downsamples the DSD files when using the CXN no matter what the connection.
I play DSD files via front USB on the CXN and an external HDD using the Cambirdge Audio app or other apps/software. The CXN indicates it is playing DSD.
I just would like to know if there is an off the shelf DAC and or DAC/Network player that Roon will play DSD files over using MAC devices. I am probably mixing some point here but isnt there a “yes” or “no”: answer here somewhere?
When I was using Audioirvana with my MAC laptop the CXN and the AN software/player indicated the files were playing as DSD. Hence my regret and buying Roon despite really like aspects of Roon. So much in fact that I want it to find a way for it to work with my DSD files.

Consider a Roon Ready player from this list and find one that has analog output (i.e. includes DAC), supports DSD and fits your budget.

I’ve also sent you a message, not sure you’ve read it.