Roon ready DAP 2022

I have need for a portable device. I wish to keep my phone as a phone and the lotoo mk5000 I use has no wifi. After 5 years I still loathe the interface. It sounds really amazing so . . . I endure.

I need:
wifi, dual band ideally.
roon ARC capable
balanced out, because I’m a snob.

I would like:
light in weight
future support and a good value is appreciated.

I’m not setting a budget as this may become a primary listening station for me.

AFAIK the only Roon Ready DAPs are the more recent Astell & Kern models and ARC isn’t available for them.
I read in another thread ARC support may be forthcoming.

This seems like a good place for people to share their experiences of using Roon 2.0 and Arc on DAPs. The devs have asked for feedback….!

Maybe people can post their experiences of DAP usage here and the OP will get the feedback he requires to choose his DAP!

I’m going to kick off with iBasso DX240, a fantastic sounding DAP with good Wi-Fi and Android 9, and native support of hi-res, so should be compatible with Arc and Roon 2.0.

The DAP sounds much clearer and more spacious than my other headphone rig (RPi and Allo Boss to Schiit Valhalla), and it has taken top spot for late night headphone listening. The problem I have always had with it is slightly converse to what other people struggle with with Roon over Android. The DAP reports to Roon the default output is 192/24 so my ROCK core coverts all music to this very high sample rate before RAAT streaming. Surprisingly (and I believe to keep things simple for Android users) there is no way to adjust this. My home network just cannot support this bandwidth so the songs always skip/crash/report as loading slowly after a bit. Essentially, Roon is unable to run on this DAP.

So I was quite excited to see how Arc might work. This does things slightly differently. The music is streamed in its original format (or can be downsampled to CD format or lower before it is streamed) so bandwidth is less of an issue. Once the signal arrives to the DAP I believe it is upsampled by the Arc software to 192/24, as reported by the DAC to Arc. At least, that’s what the signal path says. I was hopeful therefore I could actually use Arc in the home situation to use my DAP to play my Roon library……

Alas it was not to be….after a successful install of Arc on the DAP, I attempted to download some local files, which worked until I tried to play them -“playback error”. I then tried playing other music on my core and Qobuz. I got through about 10 secs of a song before Arc crashed. After that, every time I try to play a song Arc crashes.

So, no the iBasso DX240 is not ready for Arc yet. And incredibly annoyingly, it remains useless for Roon. Now, if Arc actually worked on this Android 9 DAP or there was some way to prevent the core up sampling to 192 when using Roon Remote, that would be handy…. And surely this can’t be difficult to implement….?!

UPDATE: persevered with Arc - updated the App, restarted my core, reset Arc. Now it seems to be working great. Not tried downloading anything yet. Currently streaming a 44.1/24 track, which then gets upsampled on the DAP to 192/24. Sounds really good. Finally a way to use Roon on my DAP. Delighted!

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I’m using a Hiby New R6 which is capable of PCM384 and DSD256.
Except with Roon.
I can use Roon Remote and ARC but I’m limited to 16/44.
As Roon is using Android Audio I would have thought I’d at least be able to upsample to 24/48 but upsampling has no effect.
Unless I enable crossfeed then I get 24/44 (I think) :woman_shrugging:

I gave up on the DAP for Roon and got an Ifi iDSD Gryphon for my iPhone and it sounds remarkable albeit a bit bulky and far less storage capacity.

From Roon 2.0 I think Roon ARC is a better way than Roon Ready on DAP and running ARC APP on Android based DAP should be easier than implementing Roon Ready on Android.

From what I saw on other forums unwanted resampling is a common problem on Android based DAP but I think it will be solved eventually.

I will be watching to see what evolves on a DAP with Roon. Astell & Kern have a good number of devices listed as Roon Ready (10). I would have to believe some form of regression testing is being done.

I have no clue what coding changes were upstreamed to vendors or when so I am speculating only.

I appreciate you all giving your experiences and thoughts.

It’s got the potential to redirect the decline in DAPs. The sound quality using my AK SR25 with good iems is hard to beat. But interface plus WiFi ability has made phones a better option.

The thought of ARC on my DAP is very exciting tbh

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A FiiO representative has quite enthusiastically shared on another platform, that their new M11S should receive Roon certification soon. I sure hope that he did not jump the gun and that it is indeed already being tested by Roon.

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If this happens I’m in.

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Same but I’m not going to hold my breath.
I have several FiiO products and they’re mostly great but they have a reputation for promising future updates that never happen.
I do hope this happens.
Onboard DSD upsampling too!