Roon optimization guide for increased sound quality

Just discovered this “guide” for increased sound quality:

Have not done any testing so I don’t know if it has any value.



Except for setting up the max rates and bit depths for DACs, the rest is nonsensical. (Not commenting on MQA for obvious reasons.)


Good that you put that in quotes, and of course you’re free to try those „pro“ tips as they won’t really do any damage, but it’s just another myth collection as to what’s supposed to improve your sound, really.
Roon had commented on the impact of most of these in the past, and they should know better, but I’m too loath to find the posts for you…


Same nonsense about removing the filters to fully turn off DSP was on whatbestforum and debunked by Brian on here. They believe what they want to believe.


Just sharing this “”““information””“” :slight_smile:



Quadruple quotes don’t enhance the relevance :kissing_closed_eyes:

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It is interesting to see what happens when audiophool nonsense is repeated over on ASR. I believe the OP has had a taste of this over ‘noise’ on fibre-optic modules.


6 pages of ■■ follow

“As far as sound difference, too me, these setting sound more analog”


Ah, the usual nonsense about computer audio from people that have no knowlege about how computers work these days. I have demonstrated it multiple times to various people that a PC with 6% CPU load sound 100% identical to the same CPU under 100% load. The only difference is that the CPU get’s very hot under continuos 100% load. All this very inconvenient measures to shut off every background process is exactly the same as people with record players that don’t want to have any autostart or any armlifts because everything other than the very most spartan setup was supposed to be bad for sound quality. The same people that cut the wires of their CD player displays because it was bad for sound quality. There will always be people that believe that anything that is actually helpfull is bad for sound quality. This very example is nothing more than just scanning the settings of the software for anything that can be turned of and believing you are doing something right with it. If they actually studied what the different processes do on a lower level and how they actually interact with other system processes I might have believed some of the tips, but this is amateur level nonsense. That is nothing more than a audiophile religion. If you are really into this futile, mostly placebo details about your playback system than you need to be absolutely sure the rest of the system is the very very best any money in the world can buy (99.99% chance it isn’t) or you need serious help in the form of therapy.


This user assumes a lot without a great understanding of what some of these settings do. My review of this “guide” is that it’s wrong.

But… as they say… If it works for someone then don’t let me waste my time convincing that someone otherwise. At least they are talking about it.


If the author of that post had a Bold and Highlighted heading to explicitly state that the “optimization” was for a direct connected audio system, then MAYBE it would have some credible value. For those that specifically isolate and separate their audio system from their PC/Server/NUC, none of the settings suggested would increase audio quality the way that the author states it would.

I get that many, many people want to utilize Roon at their desk, whether utilizing a headphone rig or desktop speakers. I am one of those people too. Sure, some of them would even want or expect the highest sound qualities too. Personally, I would not have those expectations, since my workstation has active cooling fans. Sure they are quiet fans, but they would add noise that the system could not remove, so there would be a compromise to the overall sound quality. Headphones would help, especially if they are closed back, but I still prefer speakers at my desk.

I considered building out the “ultimate” silent PC to get the benefits of zero fans and compromises to the sound quality. In the end, I just reasoned with myself that when I am working at my desk, the music is always background listening (otherwise, I’m not really working and just goofing off). So, why try to create a critical listening system at my work desk? I’d rather put that effort into a dedicated headphone listening rig with a very comfortable chair with a side table for a drink, just like I have created for my main speaker system. So, that’s what I did :blush: :grinning:


I don’t see a credible value regardless, as it suggests that CPU activity impacts sound quality. It doesn’t.


Okay, I agree. I probably should have used different wording.

I was also thinking back to the various threads and discussions about how some people were hearing better sonic characteristics when they used optical or RCA vs USB to connect their DACs. But, that would depend on how the USB was implemented, so it wasn’t a universal issue with USB connected DACs, but those that had issues wrote and adamantly defended their position that USB was the inferior connect type, like it was an absolute truth.


Funny thing is, USB is the best bet in terms of quality, as it decouples the signal’s clock from the DAC’s. Proper galvanic isolation is a much easier problem to solve than clock recovery/synchronization.


You meant “from the source” though, right?

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Well, the receiver (the DAC) doesn’t see the source clock, only the clock carried by the signal, which is in theory the source clock plus transmission jitter. Let me know if I’m missing anything.

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Isn’t (one of) the advantage of USB Audio that it does not carry any timing? So the source clock and any transmission jitter are irrelevant, correct signal timing is generated by the DAC’s (or by the receiver’s in general) clock?


Since digital interfaces carry a “clock”, which defines the rate at which data moves through them, they all have timing. In most cases (S/PDIF, I2S etc.), the receiver cannot control the rate at which the transmitter sends the data, so it has to rely on the interface clock to some extent in order not to get out of sync with the transmitter. USB is special in that in can function in “async” mode, which allows the receiver to modulate the transmitter’s data rate. It’s this special mode that allows a USB DAC’s D/A clock to be completely independent from the USB clock.

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Sure there is some data clock, but it is unrelated to the audio clock, unlike S/PDIF which carrie audio clock from the source…

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Forget clocks. Things have to be seriously bad if you can’t reliably recover even a 192Khz data steam after a 1 meter cable run.

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