Setting up Roon on Mac mini

I am looking to set up Roon on a Mac mini, with all the music files stored on my nas. I then want to control it via my iPad and stream to my Naim streamer. I am hoping that this is possible, and you may be able to give me some guidance on how to go about it.

Many thanks.

The install for this set up should be pretty straightforward. The only delicate step is - imo - the input of your music folder’s address with the right syntax.

I see people mention Roon and Roon server, what is the difference and which would I be better using?

I run Roon Server on my Mini and Roon as a remote on it as well.
I think that’s the way to go, since Roon Server can be running on the Mini in the background and I control it with my iPad. No need to have the Roon GUI running if you’re not at the computer.

Info about Roon Server here.


Excuse my ignorance but why run Roon server and Roon on your mini as well?

Interested in the answer. I just installed “Roon” on my Mac mini and set it up as Core.

One problem i have is that it doesn’t always restart after a Roon software update.

Hey Gary,

I too (like lots of people on here) run Roon on a Mac Mini and have my local music stored on a NAS drive. In answer to your question, it kinda depends on where you MacMini is and how you intend to use it - e.g. is it a headless server sat in a cupboard somewhere, or do you have it connected to say your TV and/or entertainment system, or to an amp and want to also use it to play music directly from it?

Have a look at this page which explains the functions of each of the elements of the Roon software - Server, Remote and Bridge - and their functions here

In my case the MacMini is in a server cupboard, so I don’t play music directly from its audio jack or USB sockets. The local copies of my music are stored on a QNAP NAS drive, so Roon Server on the MacMini is pointed to the shared folder on the QNAP. I also have a Qobuz subscription (which is fantastic) and so Roon pulls tracks and playlists from this source together with my local music and presents it as one big ‘Library’ (one of the big reasons I got Roon).

Playing the music is controlled by any of the iPhones, iPads, or other Macs around the house using Roon Remote, but they also can output music directly (headphone jacks or via USB) as well as directing the music output to other devices which are Roon endpoints only - like my Sonos players (which worked without having to do anything to them, other than simply enabling them in Roon settings), or on my Chord Poly/Mojo, which either outputs to headphones or active speakers (so it’s flexible).

So yes, it is absolutely possible and easy to do what you’re after, as well as expand your system if you want in many and varied ways. Have you already got your NAS and set up your music files on it? If you need specific help in this regard, please let us know which NAS and how you’ve got that connected to your local network. It might help also if you give an indication of your general level of competence with IT and networking so instructions are pitched accordingly.

Otherwise, if you’ve already set up a working shared folder on your NAS with your music on, all you need is the network path to this, and then insert it in the Roon menu: Settings > Storage page. The path should look something like \‘Network Name of NAS’‘Folder Name’ and you would need the user name and password for your NAS/shared folder (assuming you’ve set one).

If you use Tidal or Qobuz, add this in the Roon menu: Settings > Services.

Then set up your music output / endpoints in the Roon menu: Settings > Audio where you can enable output of audio on your iPad too if you want as well as your Naim streamer. No idea which Naim streamer you have. Is is certified as ‘Roon Ready’? If so and it’s connected to your network, it should be automatically detected and show up in the Audio menu, and you just need to enable it. There is a list of supported devices including the ‘RoonReady’ ones here

Sorry for the long post - hopefully this helps :+1:


Thank you so much for your reply. To answer a few questions, in regards to IT I am very new and I am asking a lot of questions and learning. My NAS is a Synology 1621+ with all my music already on. Not sure if it’s an I shared folder though. It is connected to my network via a switch and then wirelessly around the house. My streamer is a Naim NDX2 which I believe is Roon ready. The Mac mini will sit in my cupboard and my idea was for it to act as the brains for Roon while the NAS did all the storage. I was hoping that I could control everything with my IPad or IPhone and then sit back and relax.



Hi Gary

Sorry for the slow response (not been well). However, the short answer is yes, that should all work perfectly well. In order to maximise performance or minimise the risk of problems, I would recommend connecting your Naim streamer/player via Ethernet cable to your switch if at all possible - though it shouldn’t be essential provided you have adequate WiFi coverage to connect your Naim to your NAS source files, which I’m guessing you do already?

If so then it should still work fine, but the higher the quality of the music the larger the data stream, so always go for wired instead of WiFi if you can. This is especially so if you live in an urban environment where WiFi network channels often become congested by your neighbours.

If there is too much WiFi traffic from competing devices in the area, you can end up with problems even if you have the best WiFi network of your own! I live in a big Victorian house in the UK and even with 3 commercial grade UniFi WiFi access points dotted around my house, you can still occasionally get wireless problems caused by all the ‘noise’ from neighbouring WiFi traffic! That’s why I have every player connected over Ethernet directly to a central switch where possible

Thank you for your help, I will try and work out a route for the cable. I had a slight issue with the Mac mini in that I broke the connectors for the fan whilst fitting a new ssd! So I decided to put the ssd in the nas as a separate volume and install Roon on it. So far it seems to be working, cheers Gary

Shame about the fan connector. Would l be worth buying a replacement; should be pretty cheap and there’s always really good instructions online on how to fix these things. Have a look at if - they have detailed step by step photographic guides.

In fact, I had a quick check for you and found this link: Here

You’ll see that someone found a cheap replacement part - “ I ordered the 4 pin EZmate Molex wire to board connector from Part number 538-78172-0004. I ordered 5 just in case. Replacing it took a few minutes and my Mac Mini is back online with the fan operational. I had to pay EURO 20 in shipping charges, but hey iFixedIt!”

As for running Roon from the SSD inside your NAS instead, you may find it’s ok for you but there are many threads and details on the Roon technical advice/FAQ pages all recommending against having both your music and the Roon core software running on the same device (as you’ve ended up doing). A lot of this is to do with optimising the audio quality you get out as well as avoiding other problems. Seems a shame to compromise if you’ve bought nice quality equipment like your Naim, but hey if it works and you’re happy for now …

Just bare this in mind for later if you run into problems. You might want to consider the repair or running Roon on a separate device if you do or are curious about the quality you’re getting.

Good luck :crossed_fingers:

That’s great advice, which I shall follow. There’s no point asking advice then going your own way. I shall look at getting the Mac mini repaired and doing as you said. Thanks again

You’d be surprised how often on this forum that insight is not attained.

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