Roon v Audirvana

If you think back a year Tidal and Qobuz were £20.
Now yearly you could have a basic Tidal sub plus Roon for about the same £20, that’s not a bad deal to have software that covers all your needs.

My current issue is do I use my hifi enough to warrant Roon when Tidal Connect will give most of what I need. I guess that will come down to do i want to loose the interface and control over my multi speaker home.

Roon is a pure experience. It’s superb in the home that I don’t think I can live without it.


I just paused my Audirvana Studio subscription. I don’t plan to use it before it expires on October 1. I think Roon and Apple Music give me everything I need. I deleted the app from my Dell and Mac Mini. Just doing a little house cleaning.


I experienced the same effect, to an extent that it seems much more spacious, even if I use a mono output device. In addition, Audirvana is showing me more of Qobuz than Roon is.

I paused mine permanently, i really couldn’t get on with the UI , not missing it


Same here. Roon does all I’ll need, except for radio. I’m leaving that to either StreamMagic on my CXNv2 or Receiver Radio on my MacBook or iPhone.

I don’t know Audirvana but it could be a good idea to have a second solution.

Currently I use ROCK on a NUC.

But what is needed to run Audirvana?


Have a nice WE


For Audirvana you’ll need either a PC running Windows or a Mac running macOS.

Taken straight from Audirvana’s own site.

and there are plenty of free or lower cost options than Audirvana as well to use as a backup if Roon is being problematic.

jRiver, foobar2k . . .

Full disclosure: I’m still aggravated my “lifetime” Audirvana license didn’t work for 3 week before it was left to bitrot.

I still have JRiver fully operational, nominally for video but my full audio library too

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Same I’m using JRiver for my tagging and it acts as media server on my MacBook Pro to watch my series and movies. It also has my music imported as well, but I’m not using JRiver for that.

I just have one feature that was available with Audirvana and that I didn’t find with Roon.

That is to create and extend Qobuz playlist directly inside Roon - you can read them, and that’s it. Not a big deal, I can live without it and will not move back to Audirvana for this, but could be an improvement for Roon.
I did use some external tool for transferring Roon playlist to Qobuz - Soundiiz. It’s works but it’s not user friendly, and you have to do it each time you have modified a playlist.


I demo’ed AV a while ago and it was riddled with spelling mistakes.

No doubts, Roon is much more complex software with server side decoding and dsp, its own network protocol RAAT, excellent metadata handling. But when it comes to SQ in very simple setup like a windows PC with connected usb-DAC/headphone amp (RME Adi2 dac fs in my case), I find Audirvana’s SQ a bit better. Cannot explain this as both apps use ASIO drivers in Windows for usb-DAC, but that’s my perception. As I recall Audirvana claimed they developed their own mechanism to work with usb-audio on Mac, but that was not the case for Windows where still ASIO is employed. Currently Audirvana offers smth called Kernel-streaming in addition to WASAPI and ASIO, but it’s not available for my dac.

For local network streaming that’s a completely different story as Audirvana uses upnp, while Roon offers more advanced RAAT. And in this context HQPlayer can be mentioned as well with its upsampling algorithms. Anyway, difference is very subtle and is subjective between the three.


If you can live with the UI …

I keep having a look at Audirvana Studio in the hope that I can get to like it , the UI just stops me dead. The ability with JRiver to define views means a customized view of the library. Roon provides multiple ways to get around the library. AS gives you albums or artists , even splitting Tidal from Local, Honestly its a mess, a very poor relation

The other big downer is local playback on the remote app.

I use an iPad 12.9 pro as my Roon/AS/JRiver etc control device. Quite often I use it to play via BT to my headphones (I use BT on the patio etc) . AS Remote does not play to the iPad whereas the other 2 do ,

I have Raspberry Pi and i use that for Plexamp. I cancelled Roon because Roon Server not supported on ARM devices. Plex Pass (Plexamp) + Audirvana + TIDAL. That’s really good. I think Plexamp is better than Roon ARC.

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I have a MacBook Pro with Audirvana installed. The biggest drawback to Audirvana, other than the excellent instrument integration that Roon does, is that it requires a Mac to be up. At least it cannot be compared to Roon unless it can run on a Taiwanese NAS such as QNAP. Regarding the sound quality, I couldn’t tell the difference at all, probably because the player is LINN. (I feel like LINN won’t change no matter what he does)