“Tidal loading slowly” in Roon… but plays perfectly directly on Tidal

Roon Core Machine

Mac mini M1, brand new

Networking Gear & Setup Details


Connected Audio Devices

Goldnote IS1000

Number of Tracks in Library

Nil. I stream everything.

Description of Issue

Several times an hour the music skips and there is an error message that tidal is loading slowly. However if I play Tidal directly via airplay, it plays perfectly.

Why am I paying for Roon if Tidal direct is more reliable?

how are your devices connected…anything using wifi or ethernet over power etc?

All on the same Wi-Fi network, using linksys mesh extender. Apple Music, Netflix, Tidal etc all work fine when playing directly. But tidal via Roon skips frequently with the “ slow loading” message on Roon.

It’s a combination of WiFi and Roon’s design causing issues here. Roon routes everything through the core for processing, then onto the endpoint. It’s likely that Tidal routes straight to the endpoint. This effectively doubles network traffic, and to make things worse the core output is uncompressed as well.

There are of course benefits to Roon’s approach, DSP, RAAT, etc. But network efficiency isn’t one of them.

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A post was split to a new topic: Tidal Media is Loading Slowly (new to Roon)

Ok thanks, I think I understand that. But surely many (most?) other users have a similar set-up to me and presumably not many having the issue.

What would the solution be?

There is no point for me to have Roon if I continue to face this issue, and when I can play directly from Tidal with no problem.

If it’s possible to put your core onto wired ethernet and off WiFi that would help.

Failing that better WiFi. My access point can’t run a WiFi core and endpoint reliably. Not without the core been in wire range of the router. Most people with good WiFi experiences tend to have decent quality, pricey WiFi mesh setups.

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By the experience of many users it is not a good idea to connect the Roon Core device via WiFi. There are two possibilities. If you wish or must run Roon Core on a multi-purpose computer device where you will run other software and need this device to be located at a certain place, you should run Ethernet cable from your router to your core device. The other option is to invest in a dedicated Roon Core device, which then could be placed anywhere near the router, so connection via Ethernet wouldn’t be a problem.

When I started using Roon two years ago, I opted for the second way. I built a dedicated fanless and passively-cooled PC based on a mini-ITX motherboard which I designed to be placed in my listening room (therefore fanless and silent). But I later decided against running cable from my router to my listening room and placed the Core computer near my router where it is connected using a short patch cord.

All my endpoints are WiFi-connected, and I can carry my MacBook or cell phone around the house and it plays well everywhere without Tidal skipping. This has worked out extremely well, was stable for these two years and as long as my Internet connection keeps up (I live in rural Colombia with not so great Internet connectivity) all is well and I can without problems or hiccups stream from Tidal, including high-res.

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OK thanks guys, that is all useful information.

Just to reiterate: I do have Core running on a brand new dedicated Mac mini, and am using a Linksys mesh wifi extender which has no problem streaming other intensive jobs such as netflix. I remain surprised that more people don’t seem to be having this problem - surely most people are using wifi and probably even non-dedicated core machines?

I will try ethernet connections as much as I can to see if it improves.

Thanks again.

Difficult to know this with certainty; but what’s sure is that many people with skipping problems make the experience that once their Core is Ethernet-connected, the problems go away. As said before, WiFi-connected endpoints are mostly ok.

As to dedicated Core machines, I would think that many (and maybe most) serious users who stream to several endpoints and/or use Roon’s DSP abilities will eventually migrate to a dedicated device. Running the Core on a laptop or desktop PC used otherwise in my opinion only allows for light use. There are lots of users running ROCK on a NUC, many others who went for a Nucleus, and others more who run their Cores on Mac Mini and other dedicated devices. I think this is the right way to set up Roon.

Just as a fyi.
Roon Core connection by WiFi is not recommended by Roon.

Sure it can work or be made to work but usually wired is the way to go for trouble free performance.

Unfortunately the way Roon routes it’s traffic makes comparison to network performance in your house outside of Roon mostly irrelevant.

Again, thanks everyone for your input, it is much appreciated. I even found this:

I have some work to do to set up everything again via Ethernet.

Pretty annoyed though that all of Roon’s Wi-Fi challenges are not well highlighted during their sign-up process.

Hmm, ok, but that’s not helpful. I WANT to use Roon, and I assume they WANT me as a customer. I’m looking for ways to solve my problem, not become an ex-Roon user.

Progress! Even Ethernet connecting my core machine to my router has so far resulted in a big reduction in skips.


Hey @Shane_Knowler,

It’s quite impressive to follow the progress you’ve made in just a few days — thank you for engaging on the Roon community, your interest in Roon and all the effort you put in to make it work (better).

Also, a big thank you to all who have made insightful points on this thread (@killdozer, @Andreas_Philipp1 and @AceRimmer). Your help is priceless :gem: !

We’d love to help out, so, please, do let us how we can step in at this point :nerd_face:

You can step in by making Roon more reliable. I am still getting lots of skips. Less than before, but I’m still not seeing the value of Roon and unless it gets better I will cancel as soon as I can.

I’ve noticed that the skips are in the same place on the same tracks over and over. Surely that suggests that it’s not my home network but in fact a problem with the Roon processing?

For now, whenever I want to RELIABLY hear a track, I just play it from Tidal rather than via Roon.

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