Thinking about canceling Roon and Tidal... can you help?

(Hank Spraggins) #44

Hi. One way would be that updates made within Roon are synchronized back to Tidal. One change with Roon as a hub back to Tidal. But I get it that’s not how it works.

Does this mean that nothing goes back to Tidal? Eg, playcount, what I played from Tidal but in Roon, etc?

Re: SQ- yeah everyone’s ear is their ear so what can I say definitely about SQ, right??

(Andrew Cox) #45

Adding a Tidal album in Roon gets written back to Tidal as a favourite.

(Bill Snell) #46

Hank, as I’ve read through this thread, it occurred to me that a description of how I use Tidal/Roon may give you another perspective, or use-case.

My home system consists of 6 stereo systems in different rooms. My Roon core is a PC hard wired to my router and I use Chromecast Audio receivers at each stereo to grab the WiFi signal. I use the optical output with an external DAC as well. Each room is assigned as a zone in Roon. I use my iPad to control the music in whatever room I happen to be in. I use the DSP preset function to tailor the sound to each particular room. The whole house function is one thing I particularly love about Roon. My office and studio are attached to my home, and I generally have music playing if I’m awake, so I spend a lot of time with this system.

My Roon library consists of about 1000 stored albums and about 1500 flagged favorites in Tidal. Roon visually combines these into a relatively seamless group when I go searching for something. Searching my library of stored/flagged albums is great. Searching Tidal from within Roon can be a hit or miss thing. I keep the Tidal app on my iPad and phone, and use it often when searching. I flag what I want in Tidal, and it then becomes easy to see in Roon. I treat them as an interactive pair.

I use the Tidal app as my mobile source. The same flagged albums are at my fingertips when I’m out and about, along with about 300 selected albums stored on my devices. As a system, it works pretty well.

The streaming sound quality is another reason I love Tidal/Roon. My stereos are such that low bitrate streams sound inferior to the 16/44.1 and higher bitrates available from Tidal. I used to use Spotify and Bluetooth, and my kids still do at their homes, but switching to Tidal/Roon has noticeably improved sound quality for me, at least on my home systems. Mobile improvement is debatable.

I’ve had Roon for almost 4 years I think. It has become second nature to me. I watch very little tv, so my “media budget” goes to feed my music habit. I’ve had a serious music habit for over 40 years now, and my Tidal/Roon system is by far my favorite way to access what I want to hear.

(Hank Spraggins) #47

I think this is a very close to perfect use case for Roon. When I think about multiple outputs, inexpensive, but high quality transports like Google Chromecast Audio, and the flexibility and power given by Roon- it’s a perfect fit-- and treating Roon* as if it were part of the original installation of the sound system-- $500 USD is an inconsequential cost for such a feature rich/flexible system.

Yeah, the more I learn about Roon* @Bill_Snell- the more I think your setup is optimal. I just have 3-5 systems at home, but 3 main systems (office-- Chord HugoTT to Headphones; basement-- Weiss DAC2/Violectric to Headphones; basement-- Pioneer Elite system to speakers). The other 2 systems are in the kitchen and sunroom- but they don’t have high quality speakers in them.

I just wonder aloud that if to grow - Roon* would need to
A) Add mobile/out of home capabilities… of some sort (but of course “walk, run, fly”-- add small features then complete build-out)
B) Extend Tidal integration** and/or add Spotify or Amazon integration
C) Continue to extend metadata and search/focus capabilities

But, who am I to say??

    • BTW, does it bother anyone that autocorrect always wants to change ‘Roon’ to ‘Room’? :smile:
      ** - I think extending Tidal is more likely-- in this thread it was mentioned Roon may have relationship ties/history with Tidal


If you apply Roon-Tags to albums and tracks, the tags appear in searches. It’s a fudge but means that unsearchable stuff CAN become searchable.

(Mike) #49

I keep seeing this “Tidal + Roon is too expensive” argument. I admit I’m not a Tidal subscriber, but I still don’t get it. Shouldn’t people instead be asking “why is Tidal so crap that I need a Roon subscription to make it work for me?” over on the Tidal support forum??

(Mr Fix It ) #50

To your points

A - is already identified as something on the roadmap for future.
B - there is talk of integration with other services but Spotify is unlikely one of them from what has been tabled.
C - metadata and search improvements has been noted and is also being worked on, but changes don’t happen overnight

Roon is damned if they do say schedules for such things and damned if they don’t, but it’s been a little while since a biggish update so I would expect something to be coming down the pipe in the near future.

You can see here that things move along feature wise fairly often.

(Hank Spraggins) #51

Thanks for providing a link to the Release Notes. I was reading over them earlier in the week to get a history of the Roon changes. It’s golden to have the link here.

Idt there was a Roon roadmap? I was reading through this forum and each time roadmap was brought up some members said [paraphrasing]

“Yeah that’ll be great and it’ll help us understand how the solution is maturing. It’s direction. That’s straight positive…”

and others said [paraphrasing]

“No… let Roon focus on development and not be bogged down with documentation … plus people will just whine and complain about priorities and missed dates. “

Finally, it seemed a Roon employee responded with Yeah, it’s tough… likely won’t be provided.

But if there’s a high-level roadmap that’ll be great to see. Do you have a link to a roadmap discussion?

(Rob OK) #52

There are many, many threads where people have described the desire to have Roon be able to create and update TIDAL playlists with TIDAL tracks from Roon. There is no mystery as to what is requested. For people that are playlist oriented, this is a big limitation of the Roon - Tidal integration. Sonos app supports this function, it is not a technical limitation. Roon feels that somehow this would be confusing as a User Experience so as best I understand it they are not pursuing this. Maybe their future mobile scenario allows for this, hard to tell.

(simon arnold) #53

How can a playlist sync back to Tidal work though when currently playlist in Roon can contain both Local content and Tidal? The tracks locally may not be available in Tidal so what does it do. Does Sonos allow mixed playlists that sync back to Tidal or is it a separate playlist? What happens if more services are added it gets even more confusing or more separate playlists.

(Hank Spraggins) #54

I know that Roon knows a Tidal specific playlist-- there’s an icon that appears next to the playlist with the Tidal icon. So, it’s feasible to allow changes to that local playlist in Roon and then synch it back to Tidal that way. Not saying it will happen-- but it could :smile: @RobOK’s post above I think is dead on- it could happen-- it may happen, but it may not philosophically opposed to Roon’s view on UX.

(Hank Spraggins) #55

In any regard, I do want to say-- this thread and all the posts on explaining Roon have been TREMENDOUSLY helpful to me. I’m certain (IN ONE WEEK) I’ve learned more from this one thread AND the Roon community threads than I could have learned on my own in YEARS…

So thanks everyone who participated!!! Kudos/cheers to all!

(Rob OK) #56

As Hank mentioned above, Roon knows when a song is Tidal or not and when a track is Tidal or not. Tidal playlists have a Tidal icon on them. Today, when you are on a track and you add it to a playlist, Roon knowingly excludes Tidal playlists and imported playlists. If this feature worked, when you were on a Tidal track, both Roon and Tidal playlists would be available. If you were on a local track or album, then only Roon editable playlists would show in the list.

Sonos is not necessarily the role model, but as an example, when you are on a Tidal song it has two menu choices, one to add to a Sonos Playlist and one to add to a Tidal Playlist. As you could guess, if you are on a Spotify song, you have choices for a Sonos Playlist or a Spotify Playlist,.

There are three types of Playlists in Roon today:

  • Roon Playlists (editable)
  • Local Imported Playlists (not editable)
  • Tidal Imported Playlists (not editable)


(simon arnold) #57

Ta, I don’t really use playlists so that fills in the blanks.

(Tim Wilson) #58

I don’t find the Tidal interface to be crap, in fact it does a better job at searches. I use Tidal on the go with my phone and on my computer at work. Roon combines my Tidal and local tracks, allows me to stream those tracks to multiple endpoints, and provides some nice metadata. Tidal has it’s own limited metadata which is about enough to satisfy me because I care more about listening to music then reading about it. If my endpoints were all compatible then I could just upload my local files to Spotify and use it to stream everywhere with any system. Yes Tidal + Roon has better SQ and an interface that I prefer so I continue to use it instead. But with these features being the only ones I really need the price to performance ratio is not very good. That is why I feel Tidal + Roon is too expensive, but if mobile access to Roon is added soon I will be much more inclined to stick with it.

(Mark) #59

Convert to a Roon Playlist first -> Add Tidal tracks thereafter.

Have I understood you correctly?

(Mark) #60

That icon appears when the Playlist is favourited in Tidal. Roon then identifies that with the T icon.

The subtle difference when a Tidal Playlist is accessed/favourited via Roon, is that the playlist becomes ‘local’, and can be modified within Roon…I think :smiley:

(Tim Wilson) #61

Not exactly. I want to access the playlist in Tidal after it has been edited in Roon. Because the only way I can access the music outside of my home is with Tidal.

Even if a Roon mobile feature is added, I couldn’t easily share a playlist unless it is in Tidal. So it would be nice to be able to make a playlist in Roon that only contains Tidal tracks and be able to export that playlist to Tidal.

You see my friend has an Infinity IRS system and he invites me over to listen to it from time to time. He asks that I bring a playlist and that is feasible because we both have Tidal and you can share Tidal playlists with other Tidal users, although not that easily. He uses a Linn streamer for Tidal and does not have Roon so even if it is possible to share Roon playlists (?) I would not be able to share one with him.

(Mark) #62

OIC. You’d come up against the problem of how to handle a local file not being in the Tidal library in that case, as pointed out further up the thread. There are some very real-world problems with the idea of bi-directionality between different platforms.

Even it were Tidal only, I’m not sure how happy Tidal would be with 3rd party applications writing to their user’s library data.

(Tim Wilson) #63

I would not add local files to the playlist I intend to export. However I think the Roon developers are clever enough to figure out how to enable export of Tidal only playlists. They could have a message pop up that says “This Playlist is not exportable because it contains local files.” Or maybe the playlist could still be exportable but local files would be excluded as indicated by some sort of symbol. Maybe the local files would just be grayed out in Roon when you pressed the export button. I have no idea whether Tidal would be open to this kind of thing.

Right now if you create a Playlist in Tidal it will show up in Roon. That’s great but if you add a song to the playlist in Roon it is now actually a different playlist which can only be accessed in Roon with the same exact name as the Tidal playlist. This is not intuitive.