The Best NUC for ROCK?

What is currently the best NUC for ROCK?

I want the best NUC/ROCK so that I don’t have to compromise with future updates, upgrades, more rooms/zones and DSP. This seems to be the i7 models, but which one is perfect for ROCK?

Also, how much memory and SSD should I get? Remember, I want this to last and be able to handle future Roon features and developments.


Without knowing what the ‘future enhancements and developments’ are your question is impossible to answer, I would buy the best fully supported NUC available which I believe is the NUC7i7BNH, the 8th gen will work but I don’t believe ROCK has been adjusted for them yet? Maybe @Danny can advise.

The NUC7i7BNH seems to be the one. That’s what Chris C. at Computer Audiophile built his ROCK on and that’s what @Henry_McLeod recommended.

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I have that model and it works well, I believe the Roon Nucleus + uses it but I am not certain.
Regarding memory it depends on your library size? 8gb will cover most bases 16gb will cover everything except very very large libraries say >50k Albums


Thank you…much appreciated!

roon knowledge base ?

The best NUC:

  1. NUC7i7DN…(works for me without any problems with the ROCK; the eighth generation is more energy-efficient; in BIOS settings: Low Power Enabled and Turbo Boost disabled and in Roon DSP upsampling settings: all into DSD256 the processor speed is about x2.4, the fan is very quiet)
  2. Linear PSU Teddy Pardo
  3. 4TB SATA SSD Samsung 860 Evo
  4. 128MB M.2 SSD
  5. RAM 8 GB
  6. USB Ethernet adapter for second LAN (for example
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I purchased a NUC7i7BNH and it works well, but I’m getting dropouts when I play 192khz MQA Tidal content along with DSP EQ.

I wish I knew about the NUC7i7DN when I bought mine. The NUC7i7BNH is a bit underpowered for Rock, IMO.

I don’t think there is any reason to use 128MB SSD. I have a 64MB and 1.2 TB of music. I have over 50 GB free on the SSD.

I also don’t think there is any reason for a Linear PSU, but to each there own on that one.

What is the second LAN for?


Thanks for the recommendation! I will look into the Teddy Pardo power supply. That is my next decision, which linear power supply is best for the ROCK/NUC?

Why/how do you use the USB-Ethernet adaptor? Just curious.

@danny has said:

I asked Danny if ‘work’ means officially supported by Roon (since ‘works’ and ‘supported’ don’t always mean the same thing with ROCK) but haven’t gotten a reply.

Hopefully Danny can confirm before you or anyone else purchases a NUC7i7DN*

There is a reasonably affordable fanless case that supports this i7 NUC model, so would make a nice solution.

But I would wait for confirmed Roon support, just to have the ‘warm and fuzzy’ feeling inside.

First LAN is used for the connection to the wifi router and second LAN - to the roon endpoint by audiophile ethernet cable. Such configuration is the best for SQ.

Yes, the NUC7i7DN* is supported.

It’s what I’ve been using for my personal system for the past few months, too, and it has been trouble-free.

Intel did a great job–4 cores/8 threads, but also great single-threaded performance (up to 4.2GHz IIRC), and all of that in a 15W TDP for the CPU. Incredible performance/watt.

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Nice, cheers Brian !

Not to get off topic, but this really annoys me. I carefully read the Roon Rock knowledge base and the new model is not mentioned nor is there any warning that the old model is not quite powerful enough. I’ve just spent a lot of money on an inadequate solution (MQA 192 does not work properly), all because I needed a wired connection since Roon Wifi support stinks. Now, I’m getting dropouts that I never got with my wireless connect, but the iOs Remote works. Frankly, I’m getting a bit fed up with Roon. Ugh.

To be partly fair to the Knowledge Base it lists NUC7i7XXX as supported. So this includes NUC7i7DN*.

In the other thread I linked above, @Katun rightly mentioned the KB was last updated before the 8th Gen NUC7i7DN* came on sale. So I asked Danny for confirmation, but never got a reply.

Nice to have @brian confirm support though.

I’m very very confident that’s not a NUC7i7BNH horse-power related issue. I’m sure if you raise it with @support they’ll look into it and sort it out.

Agreed. This doesn’t sound like a NUC performance issue.

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Can the Intel NUC7i7DN running supported Roon ROCK be used as a Core and as End Points connected to a network in a multi-room/zone system with USB DACs?

1 = Core NUC/ROCK with Hard Drive Connected to Router/Switch
4-8 = End Point NUC/ROCKs with USB DACs Connected to Router/Switch

The Core ROCK would connect:
Network/Ethernet > NUC/ROCK USB > USB Hard Drive(s)

The End Point ROCKs in each room would connect:
Network/Ethernet > NUC/ROCK USB > USB DAC > PRE/AMP > Speakers

If so, are there any limitations on how many End Point ROCKs and/or how much DSP can be used?

Looking to design a high quality multi-room/zone system around Roon that is intuitive, consistent, simple and stable.

Thanks for sharing your time!

You could do this, but it’s pretty cost-inefficient and power hungry and involves putting fans near endpoints unless you spend even more $ to put the NUCs in fanless enclosures.

All DSP runs on the core, so you are not getting any extra scalability out of this arrangement.

I would stick to ARM-based endpoints like Raspberry Pi if you are just looking for network->usb bridging and want to roll something yourself. There are also commercial ethernet->USB bridges like the microRendu, which are very turnkey + cost less than that NUC7i7DN per zone.

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