Will local files come to be regarded as being as obsolete as turntables?

They may be so, but local files are the only non-physical form of music you can actually own. I guess you could argue that ownership is increasingly rare and outmoded.

Nothing to fundamentally disagree with there. Streaming is very convenient and the drawbacks, whilst still there, are in the background… until they’re not.

I stream normally over 90% of the time (with my turntable packed away during house renovations, that’s 100% at present), and the irony is that streaming outages in the last 2 weeks have amounted to 6 hours for me, but not because of the streaming platform or internet outages. We’ve had an extremely wet October so far with flooding over vast areas of rural Victoria, so I have had power outages. I wouldn’t have been able to play vinyl in any case :rofl:

The key difference is architecture. Roon (pre and post 2.0) can play both local files and streaming services with software that is very similar, and hardware that is identical. This isn’t the case for the other media you mentioned. One of the unique selling points of Roon is that it integrates local library and streaming services.

Talking of Roon’s streaming services, we shouldn’t forget that the future of both Qobuz and Tidal is uncertain. Profitability for Amazon and Apple comes from exclusive hardware integration and Spotify is clearly eyeing up original content when it comes to turning a profit in the future. Roon without local library could end up being Roon with no audio source what so ever.

Local files may be rare and outmoded, but Roon is hardly a mass-consumer product itself. If streaming is the total future, that future might have no room for the likes of Roon.

This comes back to Roon supporting only Tidal and Qobuz. For me, the power of Roon is in DSP, not search. Without DSP, there are other multi-room solutions with wider streaming support. I think Roon should open up to services, not the other way around.

Then we wouldn’t have the discovery and curation of Roon. It would lose value for most users if that happened. If Roon embraces the likes of Spotify, for example, without more than just an API, then the UI itself would be pretty broken.

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Not when Tidal keeps deleting files, probably this happens a lot of times because of contract issues with the owner of the music-rights.
I bought a couple of cd’s because Tidal took them out of “my” library.


Yeah, I understand I am a minority. I never had much use for discovery and curation, with so much music I own that I haven’t gotten to yet.

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I’m kind of hoping Roon understands this and has a plan for it.

actually you can with smart extra additions like rooExtend and an ADC and another roon extension that does something similar - in #tinkering

Does anyone have any idea where we are today with regards to local files vs streaming among Roon users? I am 99% streaming, I only have local files for music that I desperately wanted and is not available on Tidal. I suppose Roon keeps some statistics on that?

I’m 99% local files. Different strokes for different folks. :wink:


Same here. I use Tital only for sampling a new album release before I purchase.

If I like, I will buy it.

Prefer local playback.



Just as likely to use local files as streaming.
In fact still play cds and use FM radio.

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honest curiosity here: Why do you buy music that you could stream?
To support the artist?
Doomsday prepper thinking?
A bit of both?
Something else?

I like supporting the artist for sure. But also there has been many times when albums or songs in a playlist, when out of the blue they are no longer available for streaming for whatever reason, but is gone.

It is never gone with my local files. I would re-missed if I did not say except when my internet is out. :grimacing:



Look, all of us oldsters have local files. We lived through the days of Napster and iTunes and iPod, which caused us to create massive on-disk libraries of music. But it’s a blip, historically speaking. The iPod is gone, CD sales have declined dramatically, kids are spinning vinyl in what they think is an ironic reference to their parents’ nostalgia for bygone eras, and even music downloads are on their way out.

And it’s a good thing. Simplicity in life, not having to manage possessions, etc.

Music files are just one more historical artifact, which in twenty years won’t be a thing anymore, IMO. The interesting question is, what does the curve between now and twenty years from now look like?


Dani, that’s an interesting article. Of course, it’s on a site called “hypebot”. Is that really the place to look for well-reasoned discussion?

I’d agree with all of the point he makes: cheaper to make, faster to make, easier to carry, easier to take home from a concert. But those are all comparisons to big old obsolete vinyl records. Which have never made much sense over the past 30 years. The only vinyl I’ve bought in that period are records for one of my nieces, who’s enchanted with, I think, the reference to the olden days.

But even CDs are not as convenient as saying to an Amazon Echo, “Play Lady Gaga”.

I tend to “bond” more with music I own than music I am streaming. And even streaming will change in time.

  1. I’ve been collecting physical media since I got my first album in 1964.
  2. I already had 5000+ CDs before streaming started.
  3. I have a holiday cottage with no internet access
  4. I like at least quasi ownership, so now things I really like I try to purchase lossless downloads if possible.
  5. I do like supporting artists and purchases seem to do more.
  6. I always buy a CD when I see an indie artist as they make more from the merch table than from the gig.

p.s. I use spotify to try out things and to have music on the go.



Me, too. Well, not 5000 (I think), but boxes and boxes of records and CDs sitting in my basement. For good, I think. I never have the impetus to pull them out, even though I sometimes buy a CD and add it to the pile! Usually, as you say, to support an indie artist.

But that’s the point. We were conditioned by our pre-streaming past. The YouTube generation hasn’t been.