Basic Roon Question

Lots of starts and fits in my digital journey . . . I keep migrating back to 100% vinyl listening due to inferior quality and user experience. I can set up a turntable like nobody's business but I'm an IT neophyte. 

I have no interest or budget to seek vinyl-quality sound, or to burn CDs, or build a digital library. A friend has brought over a server in the past so I am aware how local files can sound pretty darn good. But it's not for me. The convenience of streaming with Roon's interface is what appeals, and I'm looking to give digital another go.

Since I don't plan on storing music do I still need a Roon Core? Will a Roon-ready player work OK for streaming Qobuz on its own without causing frustration over app/speed/etc. issues?

I have some Roon-ready players in mind and believe my home network is robust enough. And I have an ethernet port nearby to support it. The one review I've read where Steve Huff was using an Innuos Zen Mini by itself as a Roon streamer was not very positive. However, it was a review intended to trumpet the Roon Nucleus (and did involve local files). I'd like some further insight and any you can share is much appreciated! Thanks


Roon has to have a core to work.  

Once you commit to roon, you will want a stand alone core, whether it be a ROCK, a Nucleus, or Roon Core running on Windows.  I've gone with the former.

Roon has a free trial.  You can install the core on your laptop (or better on a wired desktop if possible), and then install the control ap on either your laptop or your phone.

Your roon ready player (streamer generally) will be your "endpoint".    Go to "settings"  "audio" to enable your endpoint.  It should show as attached to your core.  

It may be a bit confusing when you install because there is one install program.  You will be asked during the install if you want to install the control program, the core, or the endpoint.   

I use the Zen Mini with Roon and have no issues with either performance or sound quality. Roon is worth the subscription price, IMHO.

And, no, you don't need a Roon Core to play Qobuz with a Roon capable streamer (like the Innuos). I have local files, but Qobuz is just so darn good that I don't even bother with playing my files.

If you have a good/stable internet connection you should not encounter any problems.


Consider Plex as an option versus Roon.  You can stream your music anywhere not just at home. 

Thanks Bob it's good to hear from someone with direct experience. Thanks for sharing. 

I'll take a look at Plex thanks mapman

@carlsbad already answered roon question


One thing I would like to add though is you don’t necessarily need roon to play Qobuz and local files. If your music is on the external hard drive pretty much any streamer features a usb input to plug it in.
The only downside with local files without roon is the album artwork goes missing for some albums.
If you’re looking for a user friendly interface the Bluesound Node, Aurender (not roon ready) or Auralic all feature easy to use UI.
Lumin streamers sound great but the UI is less intuitive than the streamers I mentioned above.





Roon can now stream your personal library to your phone now, but I don’t trust their security at all, so no way I am enabling it. :)

yes if one wants to keep roon as simple as possible, get an innous zen mini - it can be the core as well as be the endpoint with dac analog output as well

very handy one box solution for a simple one endpoint roon system

You only think your network is robust enough until you use it a lot. Tonight my wife got knocked off her tele yoga which requires multiple streamer reboots for me. I enjoy local files and I don't care who knows it.

Sounds like you don't have any.

Hello Family  I`m old school 76 I just don`t understand this streaming and dac business I`m still stuck on my RTR`s, cd player and Pass it sounds interesting I was told once that I could tape to RTR.  I need you guys to explain what I need to start I`m on fixed income so gear has to be very modest in price. Ive picked up on info. like Innos zen mini what ever that is Bluesound Node, Aurender are they streamers or Dacs?  what is Roon , Qobuz, Plex. Please help me out I need to stay under 1500 whats the best gear I can get for that amount cash to start?  Thanks

I need you guys to explain what I need to start I`m on fixed income so gear has to be very modest in price




You don't need roon to stream Quboz. If you're wanting to try it out get something like the Cambridge CXN v2 from Crutchfield with a 60 day audition period that should be enough time to decide if it's something you wish to do. 

It is true you don't need Roon to stream Qobuz.  I listen in the car to Qobuz directly because Roon is not (yet) an option there.

I do not do this at home and would not want to do without Roon there.  I find the Qobuz user interface clunky and very difficult to navigate--not at all intuitive.  While creating playlists is do-able on Qobuz alone, modifying a playlist on Qobuz appears to not be possible (or maybe I just have not figured it out after burning a good bit of time trying).  Roon provides a considerably easier and more pleasant overall experience.  If Qobuz alone were the only streaming option, I would probably just go back to playing CDs.

To me, Qobuz alone is like trying to get from LA to Hawaii in a rowboat, while Roon (with Qobuz streaming) gets me there on a cruise liner. 


No, you don't need roon to stream qobuz.  I stramed it for a while without roon.  It was clunky.  I found roon to be a good upgrade.

Thanks for all of the input. Linnvolk makes the case that's behind my preference for Roon. I've tried the Cambridge, Lumin and Lindemann apps and they were "serviceable." I haven't tried the Bluesound, Auralic or Aurender apps which might be better. I'm going to pick one of those products on a trial basis and check out their app along with Roon, if Roon will work on them without a Nucleus/Core product which it sounds like it should. I'm on hold with Bluesound customer service now to get their take on it. Thanks again!

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I recently trialled Roon through my Zenith Mk3, and much preferred the sound without Roon.  Having looked at a number of similar threads to this one, I believe this is consensus.  

With Roon I did notice a drop-off in detail, and a warming.   And while I like warm, digital systems I felt the effect of Roon to be too much.  The DSP facility which is packaged with Roon, however, I did like.  The Roon apps, both Win and Android, are very well put together and have many features.  Innuos's OS is not as good, though for me it's good enough.

I expect a lot depends on your streamer, though the overhead of hosting an additional Roon Core, on top of Roon's subscription cost, is not worth it, in my opinion.


i trust you have seen a fairly recent thread discussion 'the sound of roon'... it is informative and germane to your assessment