Setting up a Roon Core - Help


I am very new to the game and will be setting up a head-fi kit using the Matrix mini-1 Pro 3. This product is Roon certified, but I was told by a sales associate that I needed to set up a Roon core.

If I understand correctly, the mini-i is the endpoint. I do have a MacBook Pro and iPhone. I need help understanding this.

Like Denzel Washington said in the movie Philadelphia, “Explain This To Me Like I’m a Two-Year-Old.”

Hi Bruce,
welcome to the forum and hopefully a good start into your Roon experience!

I’d strongly recommend to browse the knowledge base first if you haven’t done so yet, since it may be better to read through thoroughly crafted explanations before forum members try to give you advice.

Here is a link for you to start reading up.
Of course you’re very welcome to ask the forum about things still unclear or not mentioned there!

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Roon Core is a server. It’s whole operation’s brain, which processes all the data you have and sends it to the correct endpoint – such as your Matrix mini-1 Pro 3 or your iPhone.

How does Roon Core work? Put it simply – it’s an app, which takes some of computer’s power to calculate all operations. You download it, install it on the computer, such as your MBP, link it to your music folders and connect your endpoint(s) and press play.

Usually we try to use dedicated computer to run Core. Why? You will learn this in next few months, researching, reading the forum, asking questions. For starters your MBP will be completely fine.

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My aging (mid-2012, but with an internal SSD where my Roon database lives) MBP works just fine as the Roon core in my mostly head-fi set up. My music is all on an external USB drive. It’s connected via wifi to my home network and is connected via USB to a Schiit multi-bit Gungnir dac and Mjolnir II amp. I use Apple Airplay to a HomePod mini and Google Chromcase audio to an NAD C338 amp. A pretty modest set-up and generally works just fine. You can install Roon on the MBP just like any other Mac app.

I’ll second the recommendation for a look at the knowledge base. Good info there on best practice, much of which I violate - non-wired core, Core and endpoint are the same device. There are always ways to improve our systems!

Come back with other questions as you’re getting set up. Good luck!

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In Big Boy speak …

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Thank you.

Thank you!

I appreciate your help.

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I appreciate this.

Just another quick question.

In my MacBook Pro - mini-I setup, which piece of equipment will have the wired LAN connection; DAC or computer?

Ideally, both should be wired to the network. Any machine running the Roon Core should certainly be wired - that’s best practice for a Roon Core.

If your Mini-I is connected only by Wi-Fi, then you’re at the mercy of the quality of your Wi-Fi network. Many people have no problems, but many people do… YMMV.