Why aren't all your friends using Roon?

I hear you but I am so glad I just don’t think that way. But in the long run, if you keep up your annual subscription over four years, you will have done Roon a great service through loyalty and made a positive contribution to their long term survival. For that, I thank you.

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Regarding meta data, I was listening to BBC Radio 2, The Johnny Walker show, sounds of the 70’s and his interview with Paul Brady.
Through Roon I find he has contributed to many albums I already own…

I was also able to download his latest album and a classic recomended on the show.

That makes Roon very worthwhile for me.

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The 2 main reasons my friends don’t use Roon.

  1. They have software that plays their music already. Music to them is a random party experience and the rich metadata isn’t useful. Their software already works well at building up a non destructive queue.
  2. Roon isn’t mobile.
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Examples, please.

Another thing I have been advocating is the inclusion of social interaction; ability to add comments and chat about albums and artists as part of our Roon experience. Get this right and a whole new market opens up; nothing wrong with offering a close tie with a streaming service, but it needs to develop into a social network environment.

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When I bought my PS Audio DAC a few years ago, they were pushing some music software, I think it was called Lyric. You don’t hear anything from them anymore. Then JRiver was all the rage, now Roon. But now PSAudio is coming up with their own music server software to sell with their DAC which they claim will be far superior to Roon.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, Roon is Ok for now but it’s not like it is so fantastic that it has a significant competitive advantage over anything that might come along. It’s not hard to envision something far better and “switching costs” are very low even if you have a one year commitment. So, for now I will continue an annual Roon subscription but loyalty extends only so far as the next big thing.

I own, or have owned and sold, several PS Audio products. Mostly power stuff.

PS Audio is a great company, but Paul has had a few hiccups too. If you have to buy (own) PS Audio hardware to get their music firmware, that would become some expensive exclusive software. As a software only option, we’ll have to evaluate that on the merits once introduced.

Agree, in fact I really grilled Paul on the business wisdom of going into the music management software business which I consider to be a “commodity type” highly competitive business. I own PS audio DAC’s and players as well as power equipment for their hardware merits but I will evaluate the software on its own merits.

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Dangerously off-topic: Paul Brady on all those albums? Even with Roon I didn’t know (yet)! :grinning: How’s his new album?

PM sent to you

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Me too.
The metadata, or the discovery, serendipity and enjoyment that it enables, is what is unique.
The sound quality comes from the end point, many others can feed them well.

The one other major benefit for me, DSP room correction, is only for geeks.

The fact that so many equipment manufacturers advertise as Roon Ready is a significant competitive advantage. They’re not advertising as JRiver Ready.

I don’t know what’s involved in making a device that is Roon Ready, probably not all that much. The advantage comes by keeping the Roon name in peoples’ minds and making it seem, rightly or not, as the software to have.

I requested examples to back this opinion up and you gave one obscure piece of software. Hardly representative.

And how do you buy DACs?
Do you have a digital pre-amp, controller, integrated?
Would you buy a room correction device?

All of these contain software, and may need service.

I think you are right. Personally, I don’t need this and would like to be able to bypass it / turn it off, but I think it might attract a whole new audience. And as long as Roon respects the privacy of its users, ultimately what’s good for Roon is good for us.

My DAC is from PS Audio. They provide regular updates of the software in it. Likewise with my Music vault music server.

These companies could go out of business as well so I likewise evaluate this risk before buying. I just see the music management software space as much more unstable right now but I’m fine with a year to year commitment.

Actually, I would love it if I could by my DAC and other hardware on a yearly rental basis.

You have some nice equipment Bob. The Music Vault Server products look very nice, but with the speed of technology, high cost hardware and software can get outdated in a snap. Fortunately, for the audio hobbists amps and speakers last a long time.:grinning::slightly_smiling_face:

Gents, I really like the discussion and some arguments are approached from various views, but please let me re-phrase the core issue: what if the question was raised like: “Why did I/you decide for roon?”. May be this gives also indicators to ask for attractors and hurdles seen by friends.

For me personally the opportunity to enrich my personal Flac library consisting of ca. 1.000 CD with properly maintained metadata and the outlook for DSP attracted me a lot.
Before my roon experience I invested uncalled weekends in metadata cleansing and drove my library and audio sessions via Sonos (by the way I had lot of fun with Sonos - no doubt). Missing metadata flexibility in that solution, especially in classics to report on e.g. time/style periods, composition dates, composers birth date, … made me open for other solutions. Roon came in the right time.

To try also Tidal with the almost seamless roon integration was the subsequent unexpected enyoable add-on. DSP is still an area where I can spend some hours and make great and interesting experience. I still have room for improvement.

in the beginning the term “lifetime membership” sounds a bit strange for me - I asked myself what is the difference to simply buy a license? Who’s lifetime is it - the company’s one or …my lifetime - I don’t know. Nevertheless I did it - and yes, friends see, getting amazed but think this is a too big playground and can’t reach it without enhanced IT, ripping and network knowledge.

Ok, price is also an important check-screw, but I overcame with the arguments

  • it’s not a pain if I can use it and have fun for some years and once mentally calculate monthly cost

and on the other hand

  • it’s less than each single audio hardware gear component in my main room.

For the low cost chasers roon is not really attractive.

Oh yes, now I remember, some friends simplified and described it with “like a wikipedia linked with CD - great”.


Our experiences are very similar! :grinning::grinning:


I have two friends who are both music lovers and appreciate sound quality and good software design. I am regularly praising Roon to them whenever I get the chance. They are always nodding their heads in appreciation and admiration yet I do not seem them ready to buy because of i) perceived complexity of setup and ii) cost in relation to value add.

The first of these friends is a long time Sonos user and this is his benchmark for user experience. In his mind, the multiroom system (both software and hardware) needs to be easy to set up, reliable (i.e. no dropouts) as Sonos is. In his view, Roon needs a lot more tweaking and he perceives a long learning curve. He appreciates Roon but he has limited time to go through hardware and software setup.

My other friend is a proper audiophile who greatly appreciates Roon (when i showed him what it does). However, he does not care so much about metadata management and multiroom is not his priority either. He primarily listens via headphones or a single room system. He loved Roon but he found the cost too high for the perceived value gained.

For me, Roon is primarily the best ever control center of both music and audio gear. Sound quality and Multi-room capability are both very important. The metadata are great but of secondary importance to me.

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