Roon vs Network Streamer

Hi all,

I am testing Roon and very happy so far.

I have Core running in a Synology 918+ and then a RPi remote connected via USB to my Cambridge Audio CXA81. This feeds my Dali Rubicon 6 speakers.

I then have some Airplay devices.

I am considering whether continue with Roon or getting a dedicate Network Streamer like the Cambridge Audio CXN V2.

I mainly stream music from Qubuz.

I understand the DAC in my CXA81 is better than the one in CXN V2. Is this the case?

Would I have better SQ with the streamer over Roon with the RPi connected to the CXA?

I need to decide between streamer and Roon. I would not go with both. Considering I mainly stream and I have other Airplay devices main factors would be Sound Quality, costs and future develop (fixed with a dedicated streamer).


Hi wavesm.
I am picking up this your old post.
I have a very similar setup. I actually have already a CXN v2 but, as I use only Roon as source, I am asking myself if using RPi connected to the CXA81 DAC would not be better, as I keep on reading it is actually better than the one on board to the CXN…
How did you finally set up your system?

I have also a question regarding your speakers. I am looking at them but I have big question mark around the ability of the CXA81 to drive them.
What are you impressions? Is it powerful enough?


Hi Massimiliano,

I think the impact of the streamer vs RPi will depend on whole set up.

I do have a external DAC (Chord Qutest) to the CXA81 and the RPi connected to the DAC.

With the CXN2 you may get better isolation than just plugging the RPi directly plus the convenience.

If I see all the equipment I have added overtime the biggest improvement was actually a power conditioner (Niagara 1200). With this I think the RPi is as good as an streamer.

If I were you I would try RoPieeeXL and HQPlayer. I think both would be better that just the streamer.

Regarding the CXA81 for the DALIs, it drive them perfectly and the DALIs are great speakers.