Streamer/Roon endpoint options

Having ditched Spotify connect/Sonos at the weekend in favour of Roon/Tidal via my MacBook, now looking to get rid of the computer in the streaming set-up.

Sonore Microrendu and others offer allegedly better sound quality for a price, wondering if a Raspberry Pi would compete, saving the funds for a better DAC (or beer and wine).

Would be good to hear what others are using, and if the Aries/Lumin of this world are worth the extra outlay.

My personal opinion is the prices for those Sonore products and others like them are total and utter absolute piss take. Get a HiFiBerry Digi+ and spend the rest on a nice DAC.

The world is full of people who have been striped up and need to justify their expensive purchase.


Re sound quality it’s always the DAC - surely everything is bit perfect now?

The real issue is how nice the system is to use. I’m not sure I’d really change from the Mac Mini if it works OK, what benefit are you looking to achieve? I’m a big fan of RPi systems, but tbh they can be a ball-ache to set up and with big databases they can get slow. I don’t know how Roon will work with it.


Big thing for me is that I already have a shed load of computers, due to work, and loathed to pay too much for something that is essentially passing on a signal. Really impressed with Roon/Tidal, so willing to pay the entrance fee.

May as well get the Pro one now though for the extra fiver.


Yes, I couldn’t remember the exact designation.

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Using a MacBook, if it were a Mac mini would probably just leave alone. Main thing I want to achieve is not having to switch another bloody item on and off.

I assume (hope) this isn’t for running Roon Core as there’s no way a Pi has enough grunt for that. The Pi/Digiberry would be an endpoint.

yep, just as an endpoint, will use the mac as a Core

2nd hand Auralic Mini for about £325 - now officially roon ready and no immediate need for seperate DAC as it sounds superb on it’s own.
The iPad app is brilliant too.

NB: I have no idea what Roon brings to the party over and above a Tidal h-ifi subscriptiuon.:no_mouth:

I have gone through no end of iterations on computer audio. There is no single best solution. However, some thoughts:

The sound quality improvement to be had from going digital active is immense. This is dead easy if you use a computer as the renderer.

All of the expensive hardware solutions are a shit idea, headed for redundancy.

You really can do it perfectly with a cheap system, if you’re willing to spend the time researching and configuring.

No system will last, you’ll come up with reasons to change it.

You will also change your streaming provider as new ones appear, don’t get attached to a system.

ok, so now you have to explain ‘digital active’, if this is something possible with my MacBook then great. Or a NUC/Macmini?

Different things for different people, but:

  1. Metadata and seamless integration of local/Tidal libraries (for me)
  2. Allows many types of different endpoints
  3. Multi-room
  4. DSP options.

are a few.

I use a PC, with an Asus u7 soundcard as digital source. JRiver hosts a system that has digital crossovers, and it plays via a Rotel six channel amp to the three-way speakers (which have had their crossovers removed).

Despite being cheap (except for the speakers), it sounds better than most systems I’ve heard.


Having arsed around for 15 odd years jumping from iTunes, JRiver, Spotify, Quboz, Tidal, it was a breath of fresh air to have a consolidated library and good looking interface with decent metadata. The multi-room functions with my existing Sonos speakers around the house, the clincher for me.

I’m using an Intel NUC running the Roon ROCK build, piece of piss to install.

I got a used NUC6i3BNH off ebay then added 8GB RAM and a 64GB SSD, all in cost me around £200 and will run a decent DB for up to 10,000 albums.

From that I’m using a USB > spdif converter and then into the BP DAC.

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am i right in thinking you moved from a Mac mini set up to this? any benefits?

I was running core on the Mac Mini and every now and again it would hang so I had to VNC on and stop/restart the app.

The ROCK still hangs occasionally but it now has a web interface where you can restart roon or reboot so it’s much easier.

App wise it has made no difference but is far easier to manage.

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One nice thing about the RPi is that you can use Juice to SSH into it from your phone, so the occasional upgrade and reboot etc is dead easy.

Is an LP12 appropriate, what was the question again?

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