Are you running Windows, Linux + Roon Server or ROCK in your machine? My experience with a low powered machine has been that dietpi gave 20% higher performance than Windows, which is no surprise, given Windows’ overhead.
I established this by measuring the conversion speed of DSD256 to DSD128. The speed is shown in the path window. In my case the speed was: Windows = 1.0, dietpi = 1.2
ROCK might run on your hardware. At least its worth a try.
I mostly agree with you except to say the QNAP NAS devices tend to be a lot more money and if it runs fine on Synology why spend more? I too bought my Synology Diskstation before every knowing about Roon. Mine is a 1513+ with an Atom D2700 two core at 2.13 Ghz. It is way under the specifications Roon recommends, but I’ve been using it for three months now and it works fantastic. I did upgrade the RAM to 4MB and I attached a $100 SD drive to the usb3 for the core as Roon recommends. My library is about 1,500 albums about half of them are from Tidal. Don’t know why Roon picks a certain minimum recommended system. I have no need to upgrade to anything else.
I have Synology DS1511+, Synology DS3615xs and Synology DS3617xs, but I still run Roon core on Nucleus+ with all music on my Synology devices (and Tidal). I highly recommend Nucleus/Nucleus+/dedicated NUC - a dedicated device for Roon core, this will just give you a much better experience to enjoy the music.
When you say much better experience, what do you mean? Albums appear on the screen faster? Tracks start playing faster when you press play? It sounds better?
What I have done with my low powered Synology NAS is played a track that I burned to FLAC from a CD, then switch to the actual CD. I can hear no difference. They are the same. So I am skeptical that the improvement realized by going to a Nucleus would improve the sound. While it might be nice to have artwork instantly pop upon selecting it. And having a track start instantaneously might be nice (I have to wait a full second or two) I don’t thing I’d want to invest $1,000 to make that happen. The response for artwork and playing a track for me is not instantaneous, but it is pretty quick. Less time than it takes to drop a needle on an album.
So please help me understand this “much better experience” and why you feel it is worth the cost. Thank you.
If you want to address potential bottlenecks in a new build:
For anything but audio analysis, single core performance is relevant for Roon.
i7-3820: Geekbench Single Core 3542
This is the list of Geekbench Single Core scores, sorted by performance.
Not sure I would go for a NUC, if performance in the context of a huge library is what you are after. An H310 or H110 motherboard gives you a choice of CPU and would probably run ROCK, maybe you would need a USB Ethernet dongle. The latest ROCK has probably fixed that though (at least it did so for my asrock Deskmini 310’s i219). I think @Henry_McLeod runs ROCK on an H310 board.
Selected Geekbench Single Core scores:
8th Gen NUCs
The infamous i3-7350K 8 (H110 Mobo):
8th Gen i3 and i5 (quad core, so single core score suffers).
For the rest see the list of scores linked above.
Chose 7200RPM 3.5" disks for best performance. Example. Avoid shingled recording types (they’re usually 5’400RPM anyway and optimized for backup not workstation duty). I believe (not sure) that RAID0 arrays have blazing read speeds, but it comes at the cost of access times. So use several individual disks in UASP capable enclosures and connect each one individually.
With a fitting enclosure you could of course also use internal drives connected through SATA.
Thanks for that info. The convenience of the NUC inspired me to try a NUC7i7BNH with 16GB and a 128GB M.2 SSD. I think with ROCK going should be ok, can always use this as an HTPC if I need to. I may try to mount the NUC with some local 7200rpm drives via USB3 to start, in the data closet in the new home near the HP switch they have mounted in there. Cheers. JC
No tweaking or configuration; everything just work out of the box. Performance on Nucleus+ is also very good, not any delays anywhere in the UX. So I repeat myself again; for best user experience; use a dedicated box for Roon core You can of course also set up a similar NUC box with ROCK (with similar specifications as the Nucleus+), and that will work equally fine.
IMHO there are very little if any benefit of using 7.200RPM disks over 5.400RPM in a Roon context.
If it is a directly attached USB drive the is no performance penalties using shingled drives when reading data which is what is done most of the time.
I use two seagate 8TB archive drives directly attached to my Roon Core. Performance is much better than using a NAS.
Logic says that even with 500k+ tracks the bottleneck is not the The HD. You will not see much difference between 7.200RPM or 5.400RPM a bigger 5.400 drive often have higher sequential transfer but lower random access than a 7.200RPM drive. Streaming requires pretty low transfer rates.
You do not need a lot of IOPS for the music library storage.
With 500k it is the Roon DB on a SSD, .Net, CPU and RAM that matters most.
There is nothing wrong with buying 7.200RPM drives over 5.400 drives the price is not that different, but noice and energy consumption is.
Very similar to what I found (any, many others on the forum, by the looks of it) when running Roon right from the Syno. I’ve never had a hiccup even with multiple streams and 24/192 content.
Though admittedly I went down the NUC/ROCK route in the end simply because I like to tinker…
Synology NAS are quite under spec’d for sufficient use with many DSP related functions, but depending on your library size and DSP needs you should probably be ok. @crieke might be the best one to confirm.