Naim + Roon, alone together?

So everyone here mostly has a Naim streamer, and many also have Roon.
You then can listen to your music in 2 ways:

  1. direct naim through the naim app (it must not show the roon sign…you need to reselect a track if you are switching from the roon app)
  2. through Roon app which inserts the roon core in the signal path with Raat before delivering to the naim streamer

Who here who has made the test thinks there is a difference in sound between the 2? I do

Personally I think 1) sounds marginally better, crisper.
But Roon is so interesting to discover new music, have lyrics etc, so it makes for a difficult choice.
So when « roaming » I use roon, but for listening to my classics I use Naim direct.
What about you?


Also make sure that you have volume leveling off in Roon, and of course all other DSP.

At first I didn’t hear a difference, then I read other people that did and tried again, then I listened more for it and eventually thought I might hear a tiny difference. But after some more trying I thought that Roon might have a tiny bit less volume, and increased it by one remote nudge for Roon. And then I don’t hear any difference at all. I don’t know whether this is all in my head to begin with, or because Roon really plays with a tiny bit less volume, or that there is a difference other than volume but which is subjectively eliminated by nudging it up by by one press.

Edit: My bias is that I don’t expect there to be much if any, so this is fine with me and I can always use Roon which suits me


I don’t use Roon, but only because I already have enough (8) boxes, and because I’ve often heard it said that Roon doesn’t make much difference to SQ.

But then some people do rave about Roon sounding better than no Roon, although mainly not on this forum.

If I struggle to hear a difference between two states of the system, I tend to choose the simplest option.

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The only reason I use Roon is because it makes the whole listening experience more enjoyable through sharing information, lyrics, and advice, making everything more accessible. For SQ I only believe in Naim.


I haven’t heard a difference with either option. Also, if you select a track/albums in Roon, you can then use the Naim app and iOS widget to control the volume and playback.

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I use:
Naim app for adjusting settings which is extremely infrequently. (New firmware and that’s about it)
Roon for playing music.


The point of Roon is not SQ but content / metadata and connections
(well unless one uses DSP for room adaptation)


Absolutely no difference to me, apart from a tiny volume level. I believe many Naim staff use Roon including Stevesky judging from some of his posts but could be wrong.I am sure they would not use it if it was of such detriment. People have been arguing about software sounding different to others for years and it never changes. I am yet to hear any tangible proof of this myself when all things are bit perfect, level matched and equal using the same hardware and source files. Even different server hardware I am pressed to hear any differences. I thought I did when I switched my Roon core to another pc temporarily but I was mistaken as did it again recently and noticed zero difference.

If you do then choose what you prefer, we will never all agree on things when it comes to sound quality or things that affect how it sounds in our systems. Very little upsets my simple systems and I am very happy with that, they sound great to me and consistent.

To me ease of use, managing music the way that appeals to me, aiding discovery of new music easily, being able to use one app for all my listening devices trump’s anything else.


Roon is used for testing etc as the streamers support it. In the demo room it was Naim app only on the iPad. What staff use at home I have no idea; I don’t think I heard anyone mention roon in chat apart from me.

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Im talking at home not in the office.

… and so what is your opinion on the matter? Both are very good no questions…

I already gave my opinion. No difference to me.

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Are there other DSP functions on Roon apart from room correction?

Apart from equalizers and convolution filters, there is volume leveling, presets for Audeze headphones, crossfeed for headphones, DSD output and sample rate conversion. If I haven’t missed anything, I’m not using any of it except volume leveling

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On many forums you can read about people’s experiences with roon, most agree that it does sound slightly worse, but as with all this, it is first system dependent as in you will need a very good one, then a good pair of healthy ears to go with it.
But a good streamer and dac with some good earphones/amp will show up the difference and its much easier to hear it like this as it removes so much stuff in the way

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Room correction is just one use of the DSP in Roon. Sample rate conversion for devices that don’t support the streaming or file sample rate of the incoming source is DSP and is automatic so any device can always play music from Roon. You can use Parametric EQ, Convolution engine and apply premade filters, upsample or downsample based on source, apply crossfeed, apply premade eq settings for Audeze headphones, phase inversion, adjust for speaker imbalance, channel mapping for multichannel music, channel mix, volume leveling. Loads more I likely missed.

I use some of these on different zones. I use convolution these days for slight room correction on my Naim system and my office system, filters created by HAF. Bedroom speaker which is home made wireless streamer from a decent centre channel speaker, raspberry pi and a hifiberry amp board fitted inside I use channel mixing to make it mono and some slight parametric EQ sounds great. I often use convolution and headphone eq filters but I am not as happy with these as the native sound of the cans.


And you get just as many or more saying they don’t with the same systems.


Roon for playback into my NDS Network player, through a SonoreUPnP bridge. Provides for the complete experience, plus support for all available formats, including MQA, internet radio & internet streaming services.
The Naim App, with Asset UPnP server on a RPi2 with transcoding support, is there as backup.
Have LMS2UPNP Bridge also installed on the Pi, as a backup Bridge, but haven’t got the transcoding settings to work, so it just presents FLAC and not WAV to the NDS.


On the other forums i go on, most reports show a slight decrease in quality, but these forums are mainly more top end gear user’s, thats why i said its very system dependent

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With my « serious » no compromise system I use naim app direct for my classics where I do not need so much extra info. I indeed feel the SQ difference is very small!
With a different more « compromised » non Naim system, other place… well roon is handy to try to fix the sound.