Roon vs Naim (again)

I have read the threads on here re sq with either but I am still confused as to what Roon does.
As I see it Naim make a one box digital ‘player’ in the ND555. There is a single path connection to a music file on a server. The ND555 retrieves the file and plays it out via its external connection. If I decide that Roon has something extra I then need to break the signal path and put in another electronic box with the Roon core software. Surely this box and sw must be adding artefacts that are detrimental to the signal that now arrives at the ND555? Am I misunderstanding something?

You might want to read this first which explains it rather nicely -

How Roon works

Thanks, I have. The principle is the same though. I get that you may have a better interface, or more info on the artist available etc. The thing I can’t get my head around though is that in this example Naim have presented a single box that connects directly to a music source and plays it out to the best of their ability via a combined hw and sw solution. If an additional box of electronics and some extra sw and its processing is added in to the signal path, why does that not create an overhead that affects sound quality?

You are seemingly missing that data in the digital domain remains provably unchanged, regardless of whether there is one more or one less server in the mix. And regarding the transmission, Roon does nothing fundamentally different from UPnP, anyway (except that the protocol differs and has additional capabilities)

The point of Roon is richer metadata that is editable for online streaming as well, better apps, multiroom that is not limited to one brand, and DSP


And yet, on here, people have said they prefer the sound of one against the other?

I’m genuinely interested as I learn more and more about the digital domain of sound files. Roon offers me something I don’t have in terms of multi room wifi hires transmission. I want to understand the downsides for my own piece of mind.

Find me one topic where everyone agrees that there is no difference. There are people on this very forum who hear a difference when they update the Naim app, which makes no objective difference guaranteed.

I can’t see a downside


Fair enough.

Though while I don’t see a downside, Roon and its additional costs (though not exorbitant, they exist) may not be for everyone. There are always people who say that all they need is a way to start Play on an album. Fair enough, and I see how the iOS Naim app and/or a UPnP server is good enough for them. (But I do think they would still appreciate some features of the Roon app if they had them available)

It’s not good enough for me as I do like the additional metadata that Roon gives me, among other things. I wrote a partial list of why I use Roon in an older post

Not everyone may need that. Though I guarantee that if Roon was a Naim product, the Naim Core was a Roon Core, and the Naim app the Roon app, the forum would be praising Roon to the high heavens


@bruss And this older post showed what I love with more detail and graphics:

Thanks, that fills in much info. I have LMS which gives me multiroom across devices but it really needs hard wiring, lan or USB, to transmit 24 bit reliably. The wifi is limited to 16 bit.

Roon uses the LMS upnp software as far as I can see but offers hi res bit perfect wifi transmission.

Roon uses their own protocol, RAAT. (Though it can integrate non-RAAT devices to an extent, such as Squeezebox by emulating LMS)

On the Roon forum there is an older thread titled “Roon / RAAT Architecture and protocol VS DLNA / UPnP AV” that asked about differences, and in the responses you can find many detailed explanations and also links to other threads, such as the “RAAT and clock ownership” thread.

I would link the threads but I think it’s against the rules. The Roon forum is at community dot roonlabs dot com

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Ah, 2016 article I read referred to LMS and development.

Time to get a trial running I think to see how it connects and synchs to my various devices. Next weeks playtime :slight_smile:

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They added Squeezebox support in December 2015 (Roon 1.1, Build 88), so maybe this was the reason for that article.

Note that for multi-room not all zones are created equal, e.g., Squeezebox zones can’t be grouped with RAAT zones:

I have never tried any of the “foreign” integration, and the extent of my multiroom experience is having once put the NDX2 and a bluetooth speaker into one Roon zone (using the Roon app on the phone to bluetooth to the speaker)

That’s interesting and I need to do the trial to see which devices I can synch. The sqbx ‘s aren’t important (bedrooms) but I run Auralic, Bluesound Node and GoldNote Ds-10 which are. In all honesty if it works, a years subscription while I decide on my final streaming solution will be worth it.

“Roon-ready” is the preferable integration with zero headaches, and you are looking good

And the squeezeboxes should work as well in their own zone, just not playing synchronously with other zones

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@bruss, make sure that your Roon Core is wired (in particular if it’s feeding several zones simultaneously), the endpoints can use wifi if it is good. See:

Wanted to add regarding the SQ question, I mentioned my experience the last time here and I have nothing to add :slight_smile:

The thread also has other people’s experiences, such as Thomas hearing no difference, and we can be sure his system is resolving enough :wink:

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I think differences can be heard depending on how a system is capable of showing it.

I hear differences between roon and Naim app and different servers.

If I run roon from my NAS the sound is worse than running roon server from my Mac Pro, the NAS is very practical but a very noisy machine with a less powerful processor that somehow influences the music being played.

The power cable of the roon server affects also the sound.

So different servers can sound different, if not what is the reason of an audiophile server.

I would gladly preferred that this was not the case, but in my case it is what it is.

I think we are assuming sufficiently capable hardware, a potentially underpowered NAS might have an influence.

What is the point of a carbon fibre enclosure on an switch? Making audiophiles pay

Nooooooo…. I was also a victim of being extracted because of trying to get the most of my music.

I had edited my post because it seemed potentially offending, glad that it’s OK :wink:

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