ROON Core operating system matters

@Edward I am sure Greg’s post was a general comment, not a personal one.


Thanks Russ.

Yes, it was a general comment for everyone.

Cheers, Greg

It would be interesting to hear if the Roon Team themselves thinks running Roon Core on different Operating Systems is likely to affect the sound, everything else being equal and network bandwidth sufficient and latency low enough.

Again these are all assumptions based on personal experiences, I cannot see any valuable information how these assumptions were testified.

Which measurements were made if any? Only hearing based on personal music???
So was leveling of the different outputs assured???

Questions over questions which none was answered so far.

I believe the people who tell me that they can hear differences, but assumptions that the OS may be the root cause are far too early in my opinion.

best regards,


@Edward: nice to hear that you work in the medical field

You’ve chased him off Armin, you can quit now.

That was never my intention but think before you post assumptions and come already to conclusions. Is a community not open for discussions?

No he didn’t chase me off.

I just refuse to argue with people like that…been there done that.

In this hobby nearly everything is met with ridicule and doubt, people want measurements, DBT etc. for everything. I don’t have the time or energy to deal with all the rhetoric.

His only contributions to the topic are ridicule and doubt…thats okay for the mod’s I guess. So I will just watch.

It’s ashamed really because people like him chase others away as they are afraid to voice their opinions and findings.

Oh well…




Doubt is ok. Ridicule is definitely not. This thread has been moderated and is being actively monitored. Anyone who believes a post is infringing the guidelines can flag it for mod attention using the flag icon below the post. One of the strong principles of the forum is that all users be free to express their opinions or ask questions without bullying or ridicule.

As a general comment to all users if you feel strongly about a topic and find yourself writing the word “you”. Stop. Reframe your remarks to reflect your own beliefs, knowledge or experience. Try not to make your post about other users.


I can’t provide the reference straight away Johan, but my recollection is that when Sooloos was part of Meridian the devs experienced various setups that demonstrated how audio through DACs directly connected to a computer were affected by processing activity in the computer.

I don’t recall reading any of them saying the same thing about an Ethernet or Wi/Fi network connection. I think that experience with direct connection may have been one factor contributing to the development of RAAT. @brian may be able to correct me if I’ve misremembered that.


Back to your original post though. I accept that you hear what you are reporting and am still interested in the questions I asked above. How would you characterise the differences you’ve heard ? Any suspicions about what it might be within the OS contributing to that ?

Hi Andy

Rest assured that Maridan and Sooloos were not the only ones who had such findings.

I “regularly” read papers and research articles from Oracle, IBM, Texas Instruments and the like who do research on Jitter and Linux operating systems. Each one has published articles which are easily searchable via Google to not only reduce operating system jitter but improve performance of Linux work stations and other Linux/UNIX products used in industry like RedBox for example.

Many if not all of my personal “Tunings” in Linux are taken directly from these sources. As supposed to an arm-chair professional found in message board forums.

Many years ago, I references an article published by Texas Instruments that showed a direct correlation between USB wire and USB motherboad lead length and jitter. I suggested then that people should not adopt the message board rumor that 1.5m is best for digital but instead go as short as possible for USB. Guess what, same thing…got bashed big time. Of course now people find adapters to connect their RPI etc directly to their Dac.

FWIW, I’ve been into computer audio before the age of Dac’s as we know it now…some 15+ years and running. I’ve been there and done that so many times its not even funny. I’ve always been ahead of the curve, for example I was the one who convinced JRiver to adopt WASAPI out, create a Linux and a Mac version. I presented a good argument for WASAPI so they did it. But Mac and Linux was just to forward thinking and the JRIver fanboys ran me out of the forum. Of course now we have JRIver on Mac and Linux. Hmmmmmm

You guys enjoy your weekend and I will stay out of your way. I’ve also stated my case on other threads about Open Source etc. Consider it, Open Source is a real and valid route…Cheers

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I know that Meridian’s development, including the Roon guys then, showed that the road to best audio performance was to have the Decoding and Processing carried out on a “Core” NOT directly connected to the Endpoint / DAC…and that the resultant PCM data then be sent from the Core to the Endpoint preferably via Ethernet…hence Roon’s preference for NAA setup’s whilst still catering for direct attached setups

As the data being sent by Ethernet packets was not subject to Jitter…or influenced by major or minor processor activity within the Core itself, they found that this was the best way to isolate / obfuscate the Endpoint / DAC from Core machine processor activity and EMI / RFI caused by a 2.5" / 3.5" spinning magnet platters

Whilst connection by SPDIF and Async USB were catered for by Meridian and latterly Roon, I think it’s reasonable to say that both have a strong preference for the Core to NAA architecture setup for optimum sound quality


Thanks, Andy,

I do understand that different HW might affect the output from a DAC but in this case we’re talking about the Roon Core, sending data to over the network using several layers of packet based protocols to a Roon player using RAAT.

It’a like being back at Slimdevices forum back in 2006-2008 all over again.

I have muted this thread because the juvenile bickering from two intellectuals is quite tedious.


This topic has been further moderated and the “juvenile bickering” has been removed.

To all readers and poster … the discussion is about the topic’s subject matter not the posters themselves.

Please note Andy’s wise words:


Can you describe the sound differences between the different operating systems you tried?

For Windows Based Systems:

I have found the OS matters most for the computer/device connected to your DAC (endpoint). That is why I have always stated Roon sounds best in the Client/Server configuration with Roon Core on one platform and your other machine/endpoint connected to your DAC. I run Win10 for my Roon Core, and 2012R2 RoonBridge connected to Mutec->DAC.

mRendu, SonicOrbiter, etc are some of the new endpoints that have far less going on than a Roon Core Machine as an example.

When having a machine (Roon Core) connected directly to a DAC I have run everything from Win8 on up to Server 2012R2. IMO and from others who have come over for a listen, all can easily hear the differences and improvements between the OS’s without knowing what version was loaded (multi boot setup).

Then for each OS cutting back on processes, threads, & handles on each OS and each one improves.

Sound - Less grunge, less noise, better separation of instruments, etc.

Server 2012R2 Core (not GUI - this is a Server OS and not a Client OS) along with AO (Audiophile Optimizer) is right now the best sounding IMO in the Windows arena. (NOTE: Just started working with 2016 so no comment yet on this version)

Lately, been working/testing with Server 2016 Core (do not confuse with Roon Core) as an endpoint. There have been a few posts already of folks going from 2012R2 to 2016 (GUI or Core) and reporting an improvement.

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Thanks Dan,

Have you heard differences between Core OS’s in a Client/Server configured system ?

Client side, and single PC setup with Roon.

Client/Server - Client side are the only OS changes I have done. So no comment on OS changes on Server/Core machine.

Single PC have gone some HW, and through Win8 - Win 2012R2 and yes the OS matters - IMO.