Roon ROCK rocks

I know it shouldn’t, but having moved from running Roon on my iMac M1 to ROCK on a NUC has improved the sound. Much more open. Wider soundstage. Why??

Optimised operating system, without all kinds of services (daemons) running that can potentially create electrical noise in the PC. Other optimised codec library, probably. Prioritisation of ROON services in the OS, less stress on the CPU. You are hearing the added effects of less noise in the signal that reaches the streamer.

Computers are insanely noise environments, and not optimised for a single service but a generic tool. If you turn that generic tool into a single use optimised tool, you will hear it. That’s why OS-es like Audio Linux exist.


Wow good to know. I’m looking for a replacement for my old Mac-mini which has served me well as a Roon Core. Roon sound quality while really good I think the Naim app alone sounds better (my room, system, ears etc) Perhaps a Roon Rock would narrow the gap

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Not familiar with the product. Does it come with its own DAC or is it just a streamer?

It’s just a specialized PC that’s used as a Roon Core. Typically people build it themselves with parts(case/motherboard, memory, SSD) sourced from Amazon.

I really like the concept but I sure love having a Mac around as it’s useful for other things not dedicated to audio.

You can instal rock on a pc or intel nuc (not amd)

It can be a server or just an endpoint I have two running on the network neither do any serving.

If what ever you use has optical out etc it will pick that up.

Nucs etc have analogue out (mini jack) but obviously this won’t be ideal.

in your profile, you’re streaming files from the NUC to the NDS via UPnP? do you store your library on the NUC as well?

Files stored on an external USB SSD drive connected to the NUC. All hidden away in the study, far from the listening room.

I just use a 2Tb SSD drive mounted inside my Roon Nucleus (Intel NUC in a pretty dress) case. Just one box without needing external storage / NAS drives etc. All cloned to a few USB drives for recovery if ever needed.