Hello Roon team,
just found out about your service not long ago, signed up and then had a huge dilemma and waste of time over several days trying to find suitable hardware for my equipment. This is totally unnecessary and counter productive to proliferation of Roon IMHO.
I perused your player and DAC list by clicking on your partner links one by one. It seems pretty much every one of those partners is selling multi-$1,000’s high-end equipment, and the DAC’s don’t have Roon endpoints built-in so just leave folks even more confused. Worse, I wanted to get it up and running within a day or so, and none of the equipment is easily procured over e.g. Amazon or locally. Very frustrating.
Almost by accident did I find out about Ropieee, since there is no mention on your website unless you dig into the community threads, and Raspberry Pie is NOT listed as a hardware “partner”! I figure that is likely because Roon prefers to have people spend thousands on equipment and professional installation to avoid customer support issues maybe??
Another example is Sonus, I read that Sonus speakers are now supported, but they are not listed in the compatible hardware section. Sonus has some great low-cost speakers, why not announce compatibility in a big way rather than just a blog post?
So long story short, after I bought an Intel NUC I5 and installed Roon server on it, it took no time to get one of my Raspberry PI-2’s a suitable SD card (simply downloaded image from the pieeee website and burned onto SD card), then plugged-in my TEAC UD-301 DAC which is co-incidentally not on the compatibility list, and started listening to music.THIS END POINT COST ME NOTHING as I had both the TEAC and Raspberry at hand. I was almost about to spend $$$ on an Elac or OPPO player etc etc. BTW: having to download MPEG decoders for the server bc of licensing issues from a third party is beyond annoying, but that’s another story.
I then went out and looked for a suitable dedicated DAC for another room, and came across the $80 Topping D10, which is the best DAC for the money by far out there right now as far as I can tell. Overnight from Amazon, and voila it even get’s its power from the Raspberry PI USB port and plays Audio at extremely high quality (it measures better than many famous DAC’s as posted on various web-sites). I use its SPDIF output into my existing receiver, works flawlessy even with volume control through the Roon remote.
So my point is:
Roon needs more customers and installations if it is going to be around 10, 20 years from now. Right now it looks like its catering to Hifi installers and pushing people into high-end equipment, which I think is a mistake. It should go main-stream. A simple PI page would suffice, list the PI as compatible hardware, and provide links to compatible DAC’s (Topping D10, TEAC UD-503 and UD-301 all work flawlessy btw), and the software image for Roopieee.
Some enterprising folk will figure out how to bundle the following and make a bunch. This, in combination to your new fully-configured Roon server that you offer should make it possible for anyone that can order a Netflix movie to put together a whole-home system:
- Raspberry PI 2 or 3 (I tried both 2 and 3, including the latest 3B+ with integrated Wifi, they all work great)
- Suitable power supply for both PI 3+ (which needs much more power than the 3B) and the D10 DAC
- Enclosure for PI
- Topping D10 DAC
- Pre-programmed SD card for PI
- Boxed ROON server
- Audio cables as D10 doesn’t come with any
Thanks again for a great service, let’s get the word out to the world please!