Which NUC Should I Choose

Hi guys I have about 5000 tracks on Roon and I only use Qobuz streaming. Is a nuc7i3 going to be enough? And how much better are nuc8 and nuc10 alternatives?


Also any recommendations for 8gb ram and 128ssd that is not too expensive (Under 30$ for ram and 60$ for ssd)

If you only have 5k tracks then the Nuc7i3 is going to be fine, but that model is starting to get a little old not (I replaced my Nuc7i5 in 2021). Though 8GB and 128GB storage will be absolutely fine (you might struggle to get lower now).

I don’t want to recommend too cheap an SSD as the database gets a hammering, but this is decent.

For memory, if you are buying second hand see what is in there already in there and if it has 4GB that is going to be enough if you are running ROCK.
All the brands have good memory so it really should not matter.

Does the MB/s writing speed matter for Roon? And if I someday get to 10k tracks, is nuc7i5 going to be enough? Also, I do upsampling and eq filters, so do I need a better core??


How was your experience with the nuc7i5? How many tracks did you have and did you use any dsp?

I had about 45k tracks and no problem at all.
Small amount of DSP and running 5 zones.
All worked well for me

1 Like

@Yc_Chen - I’ve moved your question out of the iFi topic into a new post in the #roon:rock category, where it is better placed.

You didn’t say, but I assume that you are intending to use ROCK on the NUC?

You also don’t say whether you intend to use DSP or how many endpoints you are thinking of.

This article gives guidance on hardware choice:

1 Like

I use the lowest spec NUC in the ROCK compatibility list(I think that’s an i3) and it works perfectly fine for Tidal and a few hundred local files.

I use the 7i5 in my second home, and it’s a little laggier than my primary home’s10i7, and I don’t do any DSP on the 7i5. I have tried DSP on the 7i5, just to experiment, and it’s fine for 1 zone up to 192kHz, but it kind of runs closer to the edge when doing both up-sampling and parametric EQ and playing in two zones. Totally unrealistic scenario for me- under normal circumstances it’s just fine.

My answer? If this will be a set-up you want to be much more sure will be stable for 3+ years or you want to push it with multiple zone DSP simultaneous or something, maybe get a little more oomph. But if you have your eyes on a screaming deal on an 7i5, buy it and know it’ll be fine in realistic circumstances unless Roon releases some super heavy duty 3.0-ish things that will make a lot of people’s hardware obsolete. You’d be in good company with the 7i5.

I used a NUC5i3, 8GB and 240GB SATA SSD with ROCK upto a library size of 97k tracks for many issues without issue.
DSP with convolution filters, upsampling and down converting all supported.

I only upgraded to a NUC7i7DNKE as one came my way earlier this year.

A NUC7i3 will be fine

Even the 5i3 with 8GB RAM and a fast NVMe SSD (like Samsung 970 Evo Plus for example) will be good enough, if you don’t plan streaming to multiple zones simultaneously and use heavy DSP/upsampling. The only issue wth the 5i3 is that the fans are more noisy than those in the 7i3 or especially 8i3 (which has a bigger, slower spinning fan = less noise).

7i3 with 8GB RAM and fast SSD will be enough for 99% of users.