Moved from Roon

Roon 100% does sound slightly worse than say qobuz.
Its been stated by many, it has a slightly less dynamic, more closed in sound.
Many reviewers also find this, etc.

I tried it myself before i had looked, and searched into its sound quality. As i found it to be worse straight from the off, and even asked the question on here.
After looking into it more, more people are now comparing it, and finding the same.


Regarding Roon and that Naim App, the Naim App sounds better to me, could be my Roon server, but the naim app always sounded more natural and tridimensional.

But still prefer Roon to discover music and in global overall, but really is not as good as the naim app.

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I have same experience in that it sounds better through naim interface than Roon. When I had my Lumin streamer they had a Roon only mode which sounded better and similar to naim app vs Roon. More direct sound. Better timing and such.

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Or maybe Naim Roon implementation could be better, or Roon raat is not that great by itself.

Indeed, Naim only use a PCM DAC chip, and only use code to convert DSD to PCM. I guess it would be too much to ask them to redesign there projects to decode native higher rate DSD?

I remember when Linn introduced the Sondek CD12, stating that CD now is worthy of the Sondek badge, that was with the introduction of SACD, which was encoded using DSD technology.

It’s almost immediately clear (to me) that Roon robs my NDS streamer of its music just after 10 mins or so of playing, it sounds dull and lacks of life, even I have done everything to optimise it (Nucleus, wired ethernet, switches + good PSU, etc).

Btw, I am not really a novice with respect to digital streaming, I have had several streamers/DACs since early the day of the Logitech Transporter in 2009.

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Sounds like you’re not alone in perceiving a drop in sound quality.
I’m not a Naim, gen 1 streamer, user or know the set up/server you ran Roon on.
Shame it didn’t work out for you.

Interesting. My Roon implementation presents a UPnP stream to my NDS, as the is no RAAT support in the NDS.
This feed is identical in SQ to that provided by a UPnP server controlled by the Naim App. I use Asset on a RPi.
All PCM formats are transcoded to WAV for Roon and UPnP streams, and DSD is via DoP, to allow the Naim Network to convert, though must look again as this, as upgraded the NUC running the Roon Core to be Nucleus+ level (quad core i7, 16GB RAM), so there is more horsepower there than the previous dual-core i3, 8GB RAM device.

I have often wondered about Naim’s native RAAT implementation, as you never see it demonstrated by Naim themselves, it is always UPnP stream from a Uniti Core.
I wonder if there is some additional SQ to be had with a UPnP path?


I find exatly the same using the Sonore UPNP bridge or any other bridge to ‘Roonify’ my NDS. My network isn’t fancy, just a good working network with Roon running on a fannless NUC with a 2TB SSD drive fitted inside.

I’ve compared the same track served up by Roon, Asset and even a USB stick plugged into the NDS and they all sound the same to me. Even local files vs QoBuz sound identical.

Likewise it does make me wonder if using a bridge with the newer generation streamers would improve sound from Roon as there are quite a few people who have observed that Roon doesn’t sound as good on the latest models.


My Roon subscription expired a few weeks ago - nice software but I was using it infrequently, especially after changing to an M1 Mac Mini which contrary to many reviews struggles with several applications or web pages with the base 8GB RAM - running Roon was very memory hungry and caused lots of slowness when I had other apps open. I may revisit in the future but I couldn’t justify the price increase either with little usage. Many people find it indispensable, I’m not one of them but rarely did much more than using it to search and play albums I knew on Qobuz/Tidal/local storage - I could do that with the Naim app. Dropped Audirvana last year too as I hate the subscription model and did not think the newer alternative paid version was worthwhile as it only allowed local file playback.

Have used Asset in the past and it’s simple but effective. Might try to resurrect.

I had a server running on a raspberry Pi as well (gentoo linux), but turned it off a few months ago.

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My Roon Subscription is due for renewal soon. The only reasons I see for keeping it is the way it grips up my poorly executed metadata on 1000 or so QNAP/Asset albums and places them alongside the Qobuz favourites that I have gradually added via the “version” option. Aside from that, and inspired by this thread (thanks David), I tried a straight comparison of 2 random tracks this morning Paul Weller - “You do something to me’ /The Beatles Here Comes the Sun” - and I realised, in my system, Roon is not as articulate or dynamic as the direct local file via the Naim App. Not even close. Ouch…


Well it certainly looks like roon does produce a slightly poorer sound quality, as even manufacturers are now saying it. Grimm for instance state they have had work into there MU1 solutions to over come the roon sound problems, as that is roon only.

So i guess when i tried it last year, and thought the quality had disappeared slightly, and got told, NO it’s the same, its you, you haven’t got it set up right, and all the other crap that you get thrown. Well it seems i was correct, especially now manufacturers are saying it.
But obviously i do know that you need a certain system to hear the difference, and is probably why some cannot hear any difference.

Cheers dunc

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But do you not remember the number of firmware releases needed to get a UPnP stream running and sounding good on the Gen1 streamers?

There were many releases some with improvements, some with a backward step, some we given a choice and had to vote on which sounded better on which unit.

The Gen2 units have inherited fro. that initiative process, and then added RAAT for Roon, AirPlay 2 and Chromecast support as checkboxes needed in the marketplace.

I haven’t seen the level of initiative development on these in the same manner to get max SQ from these protocols. I am not involved in the Beta program as a have remained with my NDS and the bridge solution for Roon support I was using before the Gen2 streamers were released. This Bridge solution gets a bit perfect output from the Roon Core and feeds the NDS with a UPnP feed transcoded to WAV for PCM formats and DoP for DSD, so using the highly optimized Ethernet input of the NDS. So no native RAAT implementation on the Naim Network Player. Perhaps this is the route to get the best from the Gen2 streamers as well?

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Hi, I don’t believe there will be another firmware release. I believe the last one was hard enough to get build and released.

However I have suggested that there is one that strips out the Spotify, Tidal and iRadio components from the firmware and is just further optimized for UPnP input, as with Roon all internet streaming services, internet radio are taken care of.

According to @Stevesky in the early days of the multi-thousand post thread on the New Classic Range, there is at least some new stuff expected via firmware update for Gen 1 devices. Keep the faith, stay hopeful!


This (and some other recent discussions, plus rainy drizzle and a general lethargy for heading outdoors today) inspired me to revisit the Roon UPnP Bridge function of RoPieee XL (used to drive a USB DAC elsewhere in the house) with my Uniti Nova.

Okay, I did everything in a really roundabout and incorrect way, first trying BubbleUPnP Server and enabling the Nova as an OpenHome renderer… this worked (using Kazoo) for streaming from my Synology Media Server, but I couldn’t see any way to connect to Roon. I don’t think there is, as this is a proxy (eg for direct connection to Tidal or Qobuz ) but not a bridge (required to get access via Roon). I did not try using this as a Tidal proxy… it was just a false start.

So then I enabled Squeezebox in Roon, and turned off Bubble server, since Roon Bridge also uses the LMS protocol to talk to UPnP renderers and you are only allowed one LMS server on the network at a time, or device discovery doesn’t work right.

In RoPieee XL, on the tab for UPnP Bridge , I then Scanned for UPnP Renderers via the RoPieee web interface. It found my Nova and Samsung TV; I selected my Nova, applied the new setting, and did the Configure and Reboot cycle to get everything launched.

Back in Roon, in Settings → Audio, I could then see and enable the Nova as a Squeezebox output device. I set it to “No MQA support” (I no longer have Tidal HQ anyway) and “Device Volume”. I called it Nova UPnP to remind me what I was doing…

Now I’ve been playing the Animals Remix, streamed from Tidal, via the Roon app and using the “transfer zone” feature notion (two arrows icon), available in the Roon volume function (speaker icon) to go back and forth between Nova in Roon Ready mode and Nova in UPnP mode.

On my iPhone Naim app, going directly from Roon, the Now Playing screen (and device screen in the Nova) shows 44.1kHz 16-bit, track info, plus cover art and the Roon Ready logo as the top input banner. Going via the RoPieee Roon Bridge, Now Playing says WAV 44.1kHz 16-bit, uses a sort of network device icon as cover art, says Streaming from LMS as the track info, and shows a UPnP top input banner.

I don’t think I hear a difference.

Back in the Gen1 optimization days, I participated in the WAV vs FLAC transcoding experiments, and in the Beta “which build do you prefer” tests for streaming. I could hear differences there, on a SuperUniti, sometimes obvious and sometimes subtle but clear.

If there is a difference between RAAT (Roon Ready) and UPnP when playing Tidal via Roon, I don’t hear it on my Nova today. I’m also one of those who can’t hear a downgrade or any sort of loss of air and fine detail when playing Tidal via Roon or Tidal native in the Naim app. So, obviously, take my observations with that particular grain of salt…

Maybe others will have a different experience, and I encourage everyone already running Roon and RoPieee for another system to give this a try… it’s really trivial to get going after you get on the correct path!

Hope this single data point is of some interest, @simon.pepper

Edit to add:
ps - RoPieee XL and the Roon UPnP Bridge might actually be the easiest way to “Roonify” a Gen 1 streamer … although I haven’t seen it mentioned or tested elsewhere. Might be interesting to compare against your existing hardware bridge, Simon?

Could you try with local files served by Roon → Nova, and Roon bridged to Nova via UPnP?
Do you have some local HiRes files as well as Redbook standard?

But yes, some interesting experiments

Okay, I can try this.

I might have a test DSD file, Somebody Elias? But I don’t have any HiRes downloads.

Another confession: I was at 50% on the Redbook vs HiRes blind tests done by Dr AIX…

Stay tuned, will try the local streaming files next.

A very quick first listen to Adele “Rolling in the Deep” shows a bit of a difference at the high end - maybe a bit of “glare” or “shimmer” is there on RAAT that isn’t there on UPnP Bridge. Hmm.

Although I’ve never really had top of the range streamers as vinyl has been my primary source I did use an ND5XS all of the old Uniti range and have had numerous other streaming transports in and around that price range.

For the past 18 months I’ve used a bare Raspberry Pi 4 connected directly to a a Chord Qutest via USB using Volumio Virtuoso which cost £25 per year and allows you to connect to Tidal or Quboz.

It’s extremely easy to use both as a music library and internet streamer it sounds better than anything else I’ve ever used using Tidal and internet radio sounds noticeably better through the Volumio app than through the individual apps. I cannot recommend it highly enough for a relatively inexpensive price the hardware cost me £500 used and software is probably that a year too.

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