Naim app - next generation?

Given Roon’s rather poor v1.8 effort, can anyone at Naim tell us why they aren’t seizing the gaping opportunity here?

Why not produce a really good control app for hi-fi and general music lovers too, which integrates different services (and can filter them out if needed), plays from appropriate ones if there are multiple copies, has discovery and filing and cataloguing support, etc.

i.e. take the fact that Naim have to have a control app and so invest in software design and development, and leverage that to produce an option that introduces Naim to a whole other set of people who might use it even if they don’t have Naim kit - but what a marketing group that would be! - as it can offer the best-in-class library and streaming interface.

Sure, it’s not a trivial piece of work, but is a significant USP, marketing opportunity, and leverage on the opposition. And it’s not as if Roon have hit their upgrade out of the park - more dug up the pitch and bashed it around a bit…

Maybe continue what Linn started with the Linn Kazoo Server (open source). Has anyone tried installing a private UPnP-server on the Amazon cloud? Using the Glacier service for backups …

From a software developers pov Linn is interesting. They are on Github with various published stuff.

I liked the IFTTT interface where you can interop with various apps and services. Integrate your Linn devices in longer workflows of home automation with commands like ‘play the latest podcast’ and so on.

I think even Roon publishes javascript libraries.


Roon’s update is a ‘dot’ despite the hoo-har. I’ve updated it and had a browse around and it looks ok to me. :relaxed:

A next generation Naim App to compete with Roon is a huge piece of work and would require a whole new team to build. How big a company do you think Naim is?


Naim is a traditional hardware manufacturer not a software house…


I don’t think Naim would be able to compete with dedicated software companies like Roon. Only with significant investment and making it a paid service (like Roon is), yet only for Naim streamers? That would take significant investment with no guarantee of success, against companies like Roon who have a head start, decent market share already, aren’t brand specific, and likley a multitude of the developers that Naim has. I think Naim has had paid software before which didn’t really work out for them.

I don’t see it as a wise way forward.

I think Naim’s best bet is what @jan is also suggesting, to open source their APIs and libraries. This forum is proof that Naim cares for and can cultivate a community. The could do the same around their software and create a nice eco-system of 3rd party apps, contributions to their software and community around it.

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Developing Roon to the current point was a major effort over many years, with nothing else to do and a continuous stream of fees. That would be quite an effort for Naim.

Roon is also not just software but requires either a dedicated server (costly but with the advantage of being a defined hardware target and just one variant), or an application to run on top of another OS, requiring at least three platforms to be targeted (Win, Mac, Linux) plus remotes

And the Roon support was probably so well received by most hardware manufacturers because it did not come from a competitor. Would be tough to convince, e.g., Linn, to implement a Naim technology

Small addition/correction is that only the server bit can run on Linux. They only have clients for Windows and MacOS AFAIK.

I meant that, but thanks for clarifying. If implemented similar to Roon, i.e. with a Core, a server version for Linux would be necessary, so at least three platforms for the server. Plus the “remotes”, i.e. the user control apps, which might be “only” Win, Mac, iOS, and Android - already more than what Naim has.

(And most likely, at the very least one would want to make sure that the Windows version of the “remote” runs on Linux under Wine. This might require a bit of additional work, but probably not huge. The Roon one does fabulously, apart from being a bit of faff to set up, but no problem with a little instruction or a provided installation script. If Roon packaged it for download as a Snap or Flatpack installer, complete with Wine, it would be close to perfect out of the box)

It’s a bit ugly still. It should in 2021 be possible to build something which works natively. Especially as the logic isn’t there, it’s mostly UI as I understand it. The business logic is in the server.

What’s ugly? Looks exactly the same on Linux and works brilliantly?
A native version would still either need a cross-platform library and UI toolkit to even launch, or a native implementation.

But it’s beside the point, which was that whichever way you look at it, something like Roon would be a massive project for Naim, far beyond he simplifications in the OP

A very good point. That will simplify things. I am not sure what will be the impact to sq with the stream coming through the internet. It impact to streaming services like Tidal and Qubuz will be different to ripped content.

Has anyone looked at this?


Meridian did similar with the ‘Sooloos’ server - and then the developers walked out and formed roon.

The Naim devices already run well as roon endpoints, I agree with other posts that roon 1.8 is underwhelming - most of the features seem aligned with SongKong capability, and the revised interface is ‘meh’.

I would like to see Naim / ano with a similar capability to combine libraries (local & streaming) to run on an updated Naim Uniti Core, but without all the techy configuration that comes with some other software products - i.e. something that is intelligent-consumer-friendly, and not dependant on software/hardware-configuration-skills.

The industry does have collaboration & cross-licencing anyway - e.g. Sounds Unlimited (DcS, Naim), SonicOrbiter OS (SGC, Sonore, Anitpodes, Ausiostore, Innuos) - maybe Naim could further increase collaboration with roon.

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Thanks for the reminder about Meridian - another consideration making it not easier

I.e., a Roon Nucleus, essentially? :wink:

I have asked / encouraged them to do this back in October, but software director Steve responded they had no plans to move in this direction – if i understood him correctly. It seems that Naim is more confident in the fully closed / controlled aproach, rather than an open / public approach.

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Why is there never a dislike button? They can’t expect us to be all positive and always get along. Can they?

Probably, Linn has always been out way ahead of most here. I still remember the Linn Rekursiv CPU/SoC they were working with in the late 80s.


I’ve seen a lot of the noise in the Roon forum on 1.8 - and I think much of it is unfair. I think it’s better in almost every way that I use it day to day - and I haven’t come across an area it’s worse.

The Naim app remains - for me - woefully bad. Both as a control point, and as a tool to add/configure Naim devices. For example - I have a MusoQB in the main bedroom that I’ve given up on trying to get it to add - so it’s just furniture.

The distance Naim need to travel to get to anywhere near the level of functionality and style that Roon has is just not going to happen.

I actually think there is a case for the likes of Linn and Naim to just stop developing their own apps (some might say they have) and hand the control point function to Roon - possibly backed by a deeper integration partnership. Leaving them to focus on an app to configure, and to carry out all but the most basic of functions.

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I didn’t realise that was the heritage of Roon, but it makes sense. Sooloos was very slick.

Depends a lot on how you use it. I love Roon and am a lifer, chose it on the features in 1.7, and the way I use it, many things got worse and none got better. I necessarily do a lot of metadata editing because of the music I listen to frequently not having good metadata in Roon (it’s not quite as good with German and Austrian bands as it is with US/UK), and the only things that changed in this area changed for the worse

Agreed. Not sure if handing it over to Roon is the solution, but it is clear that Naim or others won’t be able to replicate it - certainly not the part of being able to talk to most other brands

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I once made a little converter-utility to convert to/from Naims meta-data storage of WAV-files ripped by their HDX-SSD and asked if they could help with documentation or XML-Schema and was after a very long wait told this was not something they wanted to publish. at the same time this may be due to some legal situation, I think they bought that software from a 3rd party. and it didn’t matter - the files simple to understand.