Roon V1.1 Getting to Know You

I finally settled down to listen critically to roon V.1.1 with and without Dirac Live (Full) to assess the SQ of the update. I am doing this as I compose this post. While I have been a beta tester for Sonic Studio’s Amarra Symphony since 2011, and roon only arrived in 2015, I am very impressed with the new update’s SQ. While I prefer roon with Dirac Live versus roon without Dirac Live, I am experiencing a more enjoyable SQ with the roon player. I own all the software players, except JRMC (please don’t make anything out of that). And I have chosen not to upgrade to Audirvana Plus’s V2.X.

My experience with the new update of roon and the SQ is so positive. I am sure Dirac Live adds to the mix in many respects. But since I purchased a lifetime membership/license, I have also added several components to add to the enhancement of my system, specifically all UpTone Audio’s components, JS-2 LPS, MMK, Regen. And most recently two AudioQuest JitterBugs. Imagined, or otherwise, the SQ of roon’s player, in my opinion, has taken a step or two up in the hierarchy of SQ. I own HQPlayer (latest build), and I imagine a future integration will be wonderful for those of us who think so. But just now with roon and my system and Dirac Live (Full) the SQ is blossoming. And my enjoyment is what I would wish for. Good enough is not a concession in my view. It’s the threshold that keeps me in my listening chair enjoying the music. And eventually, I will be able to remain in my chair when roon’s iOS remote app is finally allowed by Apple’s App Store to deliver a convenience that adds to an already extraordinary conveyor of all that are the elements for our enjoyment of music. UI/UX. If this is as good as it gets (for the Present as I imagine that evolves), I am there. Thank you Danny, Brian, Mike et al for all you do for us.

Best,
Richard

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Have you experimented with this new setting:

[quote]Added a new volume option “Disable Volume Control”. This puts Roon in a “no-touch” mode where it just plays audio and never attempts to interact with OS-level volume/mute controls.
[/quote]

When I checked “Disable Volume Control” (and unchecked “Force Maximum Volume”), it seemed to me to yield an improvement in SQ. I’m curious to know if anyone else noticed anything like this. (Obviously, you don’t want to do this if you’re controlling volume from within Roon.)

I’m a bit confused between the two: “Disable Volume Control” and “Force Maximum Volume”

“Force Maximum Volume” seems to work as expected, but the disable one seems to still let you change the volume slider, but nothings sent to the amp (DAC, sorry)- so it can appear the volume is set low even though its 100%. Is it me or is this confusing? I prefer the force max as theres no ambiguity, but would want the best SQ out of that option too!

While I do think that HQ can sound fantastic, its look was way to non friendly and way too tweaky in terms of use. I think it will be fantastic if Roon can up their SQ by pairing up with HQ.

I read that disable volume control was a new 1.1 feature but alas I cannot find this anywhere in preferences or settings. Please tell me how I change this sitting since I normally do not use Roon to change volume. thanks.

Can you please explain a little more about these two new features.

I’ve checker " Disable Volume Control" but how do you now control the volume?

What is the effect of checking “Force Maximum Volume” surely why would you want Max Volume?

Thanks.

Regards.
Tim

You’d only want to use these options if you aren’t going to control the volume from within Roon. So, for example, I just control the volume via my pre-amp, and I don’t want any other volume attenuation “upstream” in the playback chain.

–David

I’d like to, but since I’m at work, I don’t have access to Roon right now. I’ll try to remember to nail this down when I get home. Or maybe someone else will chime in in the meantime.

–David

Thanks for the reply David.

So I’m using Roon loaded on my MacMini and playing to my Oppo PM3’s through a USB Meridian Explorer2 DAC/Amp. In this configuration I take it I should leave both these two new features un-checked?

Thanks

I don’t have direct experience with the Explorer2, but looking at it on the Meridian website, it seems like you should indeed leave them unchecked. (The info is kind of sparse on the Meridian site, but I’m guessing Roon’s volume slider will control the Explorer2’s volume.) If you were using, say, a headphone amp with its own volume control knob, then you’d likely want to check one or the other “volume-defeating” settings in Roon.

–David

Hello David,

I started out with Force and ended with Disable Volume Control, which I prefer. Prior to the V1.1 update, Disbable Volume Control was the setting I used, preferring to regulate volume levels with my W4S STP-SE Stage 2 preamp, which together with the W4S Dac2 DSDse sounds the best in my opinion, compared to employing the W4S Dac2 DSDse’s preamp to control volume and directly connected to my W4S SX1000 mono blocks.

After I switched from Force to Disable I was back to what sounds best to me. I am not able to articulate what makes the difference. Sorry. But I can only explain that auditorily, as I discern the difference sensorily, I prefer Disable to Force.

Probably my account affords very little other than to recommend you do the same, i.e., check it out for yourself and decide which setting enabled affords you with the best SQ.

Enjoy the music,
Richard

Hello David,

Precisely. That is my preference also! Hence I employed Disable before with V1.0 and now with V1.1. My preamp does an excellent management of volume level and any attenuation is not welcome from a player. The proof is in the pudding to quote a banality that holds true for my assessment. Also I believe it is important to insure volume is 100% and not attenuated from the player’s digital volume control which allows me to then modulate/regulate the volume levels from my preamp. The volume range for the W4S DAC/STP-SE Stage 2 is 0-70, and the higher the level the less attenuation and the better the SQ. I find that depending on the production quality, the volume levels left to my preamp and NOT within roon’s mangagement is best. But that’s my experience.

Best,
Richard

Thanks for your trouble David, that’s been very helpful.

Regards,
Tim

Hi Richard. I’m probably blind but I cannot find the disable volume setting in settings or preferences. Can you tell me where to look for it. Thanks!

Hello Pre,

Using my example: I am presently playing an Oscar Peterson download, 192/24, AIFF, and I am also employing Dirac Live (Full). The Zone is therefore Dirac DAP. If I was only employing my W4S Dac2 DSDse without Dirac Live, I would change the Zone to W4S Dac2 DSDse. Then in Audio Setup for the Zone Dirac DAP, if I check Exclusive Mode, several options become available. I have chosen to enable Exclusive Mode, Integer Mode which is now available, Disable Volume etc. which is now available. If I were to disable Exclusive Mode those options would no longer be available to me. Volume is 100 according to roon which is what I want. And, hopefully, what I believe I have accomplished is to turn over the volume to my W4S Dac2 DSDse exclusively AND because I also employ Dirac Live which allows me to regulate the Gain through it’s Gain Filter I can set the volume level with my Preamp with roon at 100% and then if production quality is too hot regulate the Gain through Dirac Live which regulates the impulse response correction. But I believe I have answered your query about where to find those other settings. N’est-ce pas?

Hope so.

Best,
Richard

Yes, I’d been using “Force Maximum Volume” (which, according to the release notes, used to be called “Fixed Volume” in v1.0), but when I tried “Disable Volume Control,” it seemed to improve SQ. (I’m happy to leave the description of what changed at that level; I’m constitutionally uncomfortable with using the audiophile vocabulary to describe how things sound.)

Not a high priority, but I’d find It helpful if one of the Roon guys could elaborate on the differences between “Force Maximum Volume” and “Disable Volume Control.”

–David

Hello David,

I concur. In fact, after your post, I started to wonder (well even before) what these “new”/same/different settings actually accomplish. After your post I started changing things and then checking out what the results accomplished using the Signal Path button, you know, that green button in the middle of the bottom section with play controls, time line, the musical note icon, the Zones etc. I then kept changing the settings to determine what if anything I could discern. I read the explanation when one clicks on the information icon. Yikes! I decided to leave Disable as the best setting which I thought was what version 1.0 provided, i.e., disabling roon from controling the volume and leaving that to my preamp device. Are you indicating that the setting to accomplish that now is Forced…?

Therefore, I agree that it would be helpful if roon support helped us appreciate the different settings and what they accomplish.

Best,
Richard

Once again, I also agree with you that Disable is preferred over Force, which I believe I indicated in my post (or meant to). So if I am incorrect in what each setting actually accomplishes, what I am hearing is determining my setting. I agree the SQ is better with Disable. Yikes!
Best,
Richard

I used to be able to get at these exclusive mode and fixed volume features by right clicking on the speaker icon in the bottom right of the roon window. This is not working anymore in 1.1 why is that? Are these features somewhere else now? I can’t find them anywhere in settings.

Hello philr,
The lower right speaker icon is the icon for the active Zone. When you click on that icon, the Zones show up. In that window, upper right is Audio Setup. Click on audio setup, pick the Zone, click on the gears icon, check Exclusive Mode, all those options appear for one to select. If you do not select Exclusive Mode once it is revealed then your options are limited.

Best,
Richard