Very strange noise/sound when playing music from Roon

Core Machine (Operating system/System info/Roon build number)

Mac Mini Server 2010 with new SSD as of 09-2020. Mac OS X High Sierra 10.13.6. Roon Server

Network Details (Including networking gear model/manufacturer and if on WiFi/Ethernet)

300/300 Mbps fiber network. Network Nighthawk R8000p/X6s router - wired to Mac Mini

Audio Devices (Specify what device you’re using and its connection type - USB/HDMI/etc.)

Mac Mini Server 2010 with SSD. Roon Server installed, USB connected AudioQuest Dragonfly Cobalt(DAC/amp in DAC only mode), connected with jack to RCA cable to a Schiit Asgard 2 headphone amp. Focal headphones. MacBook Pro 2019 as Roon Remote (Roon 1.7 build 710).
Btw. I tried different hardware, except for the MacBook Pro.

Description Of Issue

Every 5 minutes or so during music playback, I get a very strange noise/sound. It is hard to describe, but it sounds like an electronic charge passing by. About 3-4 seconds duration. The noise is almost identical each time, but seems a little influenced by the music playing. I found out this must be something concerning the Parametric EQ. Each time I turn that on of off, the noise appears after 2 seconds. But either EQ is turned on or off, the noise appears about every 5 minutes.

I´ve uploaded a sound file of the noise to my iCloud account. So you can hear it here:

Hope someone can help me get rid of this noise. It´s VERY annoying.

Is it possible that your system is clipping? Maybe turn on clipping indicator (under the headroom management function in the DSP settings) and see if the EQ you are doing is adding too much gain.

Thanks for your answer. I’m not familiar with clipping, but I don’t have a lot of gain. And the noise is there at any volume. Also there when eq turned off. But I’ll try your clipping suggestion. It can’t hurt. I’ll post back when I’ve tried it.

Yes, if it happens at low volumes then that’s probably not the issue. Just some other things you could try while waiting for Support, is to try playback through other endpoints, like the internal speakers on your Mac Mini core and your MacBook endpoint and see if the issue still arises.

Also, the standard suggestion of rebooting everything in your chain, including your router and core, although again I doubt it will change things, but it relatively quick and easy,

Tried some other endpoints also, but the issue is exclusive for the USB Dragonfly. I tried different Dragonflys also, and another USB port. So it seems there must be an issue with the Roon DSP. Tried rebooting everything. Also reset NVRAM and SMC on the Mac Mini. I think I will try reinstalling Roon on my MacBook Pro. Thanks a lot for your help so far. I´ll post an update when I find out the solution.

Hi @Jon_Anders_Aasbakk,

Welcome to the forum! Can you please check to see if you have the latest firmware installed for your Dragonfly?

Does the same thing happen on all the Dragonflys or is the issue just one of them. There are a lot of users that use those (successfully), I can tag one of them if helpful.

The same thing happens with all Dragonflys. I have the Black, Red and Cobalt. Same issue with either one.

Hi @Jon_Anders_Aasbakk,

Can you please try to play to your System Output zone on the Core and verify if you’re hearing that noise for that zone as well?

Hi. Thanks for your response. I just got hold of another Mac Mini to run Roon Server, and it´s working as it should. Didn´t find out what caused the strange noise though.

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