Roon does not see my Ayon S-5

Roon requires an Apple Airplay, Roon endpoint or squeezebox network device. I assume your network device isn’t any of these?

I don’t know your hardware Jerry, but my hunch is the network connection to the DAC as it’s not a RoonReady device - very few of which exist at the moment as its only recently been launched.

Can you connect any other inputs to your Mac mini? Or can it support AirPlay as a workaround?

If not, Roon are on the verge of releasing their network transport so you’d be able to feed it via a Raspberry Pi or similar network renderer.

I’ll leave the Roon guys or someone that can explain better to say more.

(Dr Tone beat me to it and said it more succinctly anyway)

I can connect a USB to my mac mini and then the USB to my my DAC but I do not want to go that way. I guess I thought that since my Ayon DAC is on the network that Roon would see it. The last thing I want to do is add yet another piece of hardware such as the Raspberry Pi unit. Glad I got the free trial.
I do not want to use Airplay as it wont stream 192/24 files or DSD.

I have an Airplay unit. I guess that is why my Marantz Sound processor is showing up. Well, I guess I tried and “not ready for prime time” yet. Guess I will cancel the free trial and go back to what I was using. Too bad, the file management is great!

That’s a shame. But that’s what the trial’s there for I suppose.

It would be worth contacting Ayon to see if RoonReady is on their roadmap. I’ve no idea, but you might get a pleasant surprise?

The Ayon S-5 appears to be a UPNP streamer. Roon does not support UPNP, for some very solid reasons.

Calling Roon ‘not ready for prime time’ is off the mark, in my book. But like @hifi_swlon says, it wouldn’t hurt to query Ayon about their plans for RoonReady support.

Can I ask @Jerry_Sobel, why you are averse to adding an inexpensive network renderer to your system ? Adding such a device means you can use any DAC you want, rather than wait for your favourite DAC to become RoonReady.

An example of a currently available RoonReady renderer is the Sonore SonicOrbiter SE.

After Roon 1.2 is released there will be many options for small footprint network endpoints, including Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone Black and CuBox-i (running Linux, although there may be a RoonBridge image released for the Pi). Support for the Chromecast Audio as a network renderer is on the roadmap, but may not be ready for Roon 1.2.

My humblest apologies. I am sorry for my comment about Roon. The Ayon software sucks eggs!!

I have enough gear and just do not want to add more stuff. But I will look at the product you suggested.


Fair comment. I grew up with the idea that each musical source was one additional piece to my hifi gear. Turntable; one piece. Tuner; one piece. Cassettes; one piece. I get it. It was kind of nice. But that has potentially changed with digital music added as a music source.

Clearly there are streamers (like Auralic Vega as just one example of many) that allow us to continue the idea of one new component for a new music source. I would personally preferred it if Roon could be available to me in single component form. But if you don’t want to put a PC in your hifi rack, or if you don’t want to run a long USB cable to your rack, then it’s not. Those things describe me. And the reasons why there are multiple components are good once, involving improving flexibility, usability, and sonics. And though I’d prefer 1 additional piece also, I love Roon - both the interface and the sound - enough that I’m happy to put up with a little additional gear.

But that’s me.

Actually, I totally agree with you on this topic. I ran a Mac- mini by USB to a PS Audio Directstream DAC for about a year and half and had it on my audio rack. I used JRiver and it all worked reasonably well. As well as JRiver can work… Can be a frustrating piece of software to use. The Mac I ran headless.
However, I could never get used to the Directstream’s edginess after thousands of hours. I really love this sound of the Ayon S-5 and have a local dealer. In place of the Mac Mini I added a QNAP NAS drive and have run my music by Ethernet through my network.
The Ayon software leaves something to be desired as it lacks meta data etc. The Roon is such a beautiful piece of software for music lovers. I actually put my Mac mini back into my system and hooked it up to my router and was excited to use Roon but it was a no go…I am sad about it as I was so excited to use the software. So, I take back what I said about adding more stuff to my system. I would do it as long as I could minimize the links in the chain so to speak and I could easily get it to work. Nothing is more frustrating that getting a network to work.
It would be great if Roon could make their software for QNAP but again that is a UPnP device.

I looked at the piece of hardware you suggested but I am concerned that it adds another piece of equipment to the chain and therefore somehow could take away from the quality of the playback.


Jerry - if the piece of equipment you are referring to is a SonicOrbiter SE, run in its RoonReady mode, I can tell you from personal experience that it should not degrade your sound. In fact - because of the benefits of RAAT that it provides - your digital music may sound better than it ever has before. I’ve been an audiophile on a budget for many decades, and it’s the best digital sound I have EVER heard, and I’m including music from my CD player in that judgment.

Can you introduce noise from another electrical device? Of course. But I don’t hear it from the Sonicore SE’s supplied linear power supply. If that is a concern though, buy their “international” PS, which is really an iFi IPower. It’s very unlikely you’ll get any noise problems from that.

There are those that feel that a wired Ethernet connection can introduce noise vs. wifi. I do not fall into that camp, have never experienced it in my hifi gear, and I’ve been using Cat 5 connected digital music streamers since 2001. But your mileage may vary.

As for the music itself, people talk about “bit perfect” all the time. But bit perfect can still be crap if the timing of said bits being passed between components is not likewise perfect, and is a major cause of jitter. The SonicORbiter SE - and ANY RoonReady Endpoint connecting by USB to a DAC - solves that. Your DAC’s clock will control all the timing of music movement between components, all the way back to your Roon or RoonServer. Honestly I’m not sure I can say I can hear the difference with my 16/44 music. But the improvement is quite audible in all my high res music.

So it’s prudent to be concerned. But IMO a well informed review of the issues may show that it is concern that is unnecessary. Your music will likely sound better, not worse. You may want to get other opinions on that. But I’ve shared mine.

Sorry - Just noticed the iFi iPower is an optional upgrade, and NOT the international PS.


if I purchased the unit how exactly would I put it into my chain? Would I run the ethernet cable that is going to my Ayon S-5 into the unit and then a USB cable to my S-5?


Jerry - looking into that. Will get back to you shortly - if someone else does not answer first. Had not looked at your setup in any detail. Doing that now…

Jerry, I need to know a few things about your S-5…

  1. How is it connected to your network; cabled or wifi?
  2. The S-5 appears to include a DAC. Is the S-5 your DAC? Or is your “Ayon DAC” a separate component?
  3. If your DAC is separate from the S-5, how do you connect the S-5 to it?
  4. If your DAC is a separate component that your S-5 connects to, will there be a spare USB port on the DAC for Roon?
  5. And if not, does the DAC have other spare connections (S/PDIF or whatever)?


Hi Steve,

My S-5 is two units- a separate power supply and a DAC/UPnP music streamer. It is connected to my network by ethernet cable.

There is a USB port on the unit but it is recommended to run ethernet. I have my music on a QNAP that is also on the network.

It also has a host of other connections including S/PDIF.

If your S-5 has optical in you could go optical from the Sonicorbiter SE to your DAC. Ethernet to the Sonicorbiter SE.

USB is questionably as some need specific drivers. Not saying it wouldn’t work but a bit of an unknown.

Jerry - I think that makes this easy…

  1. Leave your Roon where it is, on the Mac Mini, connected to your Router (hopefully cable, not wifi).
  2. Get a RoonReady Network Endpoint (at the moment that’s SonicObiter SE, Auralic Aries LE or full Aries).
  3. Consider a power supply upgrade for any of those EndPoints.
  4. Connect your EndPoint to your router with an Ethernet cable.
  5. Connect your EndPoint to your DAC via USB.

That’s it.

But please note, there is a LOT of discussion over whether USB is the best choice. What is certain is that your DAC’s clock will not control the flow of music to it otherwise, and that may induce jitter. However, there are arguments that state that if your DAC is caching it does not matter. I’ll not go down that rabbit hole. It’s a tough decision, with no obvious answers. Myself, I got a nice Nordost USB cable and an AudioQuest Jitterbug and am happy. If you don’t want to use USB, the SonicObiter has Toslink. Any other connection would require exploring what the Aries have. Soon, there should be more options. But for now that covers most of the RoonReady Network Endpoint options.

Hope that helps.

Jeff - sorry. You ninja posted on me! :smile: Agree with all you’ve said except USB being unknown for drivers. Drivers - when needed - are sometimes needed to output over USB to certain DACs. But I’ve never seen the need for a such a driver when the device outputting the music is Linux based. And the SonicOriber SE’s are. So no drivers. Ever.

You can check the SonicOrbiter documentation and you’ll see no accommodation for loading drivers. Same with the Aries actually, also Linux based…