IMac or NAS

IMac or NAS
I have an IMac with a 2T 16g SSD, I have 1T of music. I take my music on an external hard disk in NAS with wire. will I be better off putting my music directly into my IMac. will I have better sound quality?

I would not keep my music on my working computer. Go with either the NAS or at least an external SSD.

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the 2T SSD is inside the iMac.
at the moment …nas…iMac with Roon to bridge 2 PS

I have some files on my iMac’s internal drive, but the vast majority of my library is on an external drive connected to the iMac via USB. Most of the internal files are hi-res, but among those that are redbook, I can’t hear a difference between them and similar ones on the external drive.

However, the rest of the system can influence your choice of drives, too. My streamer, a Node 2i, cannot access the external drive over the network - it will only find the iMac’s internal drive. Problem for me is that my library is considerably larger than that internal drive, so I can’t use it. So I end up using my phone to pull the external drive files over the network and send them to the Node via AirPlay, which limits resolution to not much better than redbook.

here is my setup. IMac with Roon core, which takes music from a NAS with network file. bridge 2 with network files. the question … would the sound be better if Roon took the music direct from the internal ssd disc of the IMac. that is the real question. internal disc or nas. excuse my english

An iMac is a lot more flexible, since you can run various software on it. It also works and sounds very good as a dedicated Roon Bridge endpoint. (especially with a Matrix device)

Merci pour les conseils

I think I’m doing what you’re thinking of…

My mac mini has two SSDs (it started out as a server) and Roon grabs the music files from the bigger of the two SSDs. (1T I think.)

I have a NAS, which I’m simply using as a mirror backup of the music files.

However, I can’t say with any confidence that the sound quality is better playing off the mini’s SSD.

It MIGHT speed up the access to the library, but it’s probably insignificant.

Theoretically, with Roon, speed is dictated by the drive that hosts the database vs the music files. So you want your Roon database on an SSD vs a spinning drive. That being said, my Roon setup is all on SSD.

I run ROCK on an Intel i5 NUC that has an SSD for the ROCK software and the Roon database, and a separate SSD for my music library. The NUC music library disc is unused right now since I setup a NAS that is hosting the music files for both Roon and my Sonos installation since the family prefers Sonos to Roon.

The NAS has SSDs in it. The SSDs make a speed difference for Sonos, but not Roon. It’s fast and efficient and relatively failsafe since I have the NAS running with two identical drives backstopping each other for reliability vs striping the drives for extra space.

Okay, I realized I didn’t really respond to the OP

My recommendation is get a NUC and run ROCK on it. It is cheap, not that hard to setup if you follow their instructions and creates a dedicated appliance that won’t ever be subject to third party software changes that render it non-functional since it is running ONLY the software the vendor creates. It runs a skinny Linux that Roon Labs updates and Roon server. That’s it.

As to music storage? Easiest is in the ROCK NUC. But as noted above, I prefer a NAS for my own reasons.

Appliance + full control by vendor = stability


Merci beaucoup

For an inexpensive variation, I have my local music files stored on a USB3 thumb-drive on my ASUS router. It works fine with Roon and is more than fast enough.
I see zero need for a more complex, less reliable, NAS - no SW or extra hardware needed for this approach.

Me on my router my wester digital double are plugged in with 800g of music
Seeing that my new IMac (with roon core,) has 2T Ssd and 16 ram, I was wondering if the sound would be better with my 800g of music directly in my IMac


I use a NAS connected to my network for backup. All of my downloaded and ripped music (most of my collection is ripped CDs) is on my iMac, which is connected to my “big rig” system via Wi-Fi. The router is in the same room as the Hi-Fi and feeds my DS DAC via galvanically isolated ethernet and the PS Audio Bridge II network card (I use TP-LINK Media Converters after the router and before a switch which feeds the DAC/Bridge via a WireWorld Ethernet cable plugged into a Pink Faun LAN Isolator plugged into the Bridge). The iMac is on a separate floor of the house/in the kitchen-office area.

I have never tried to listen to any music from the NAS. That said, my current network streaming set up is more or less the best digital front end/best sounding source I have ever enjoyed at home. I recently picked up a used PS Audio DMP and so far it rivals the digital files via iMac (I use Roon, w/ Tidal and Qbuz subscriptions, and JRiver Media Center software) on occasion, but I think I still give the edge to my digital files streaming from the iMac - especially via JRMC, which I tend to prefer over Roon for “critical” listening.

I guess my point is, I would not sweat over NAS vs. iMac if the iMac has enough space, especially if you isolate the iMac from your DAC via Wi-Fi and/or galvanic isolation. Files form you iMac can sound unbelievable good with an excellent DAC.

FWIW/good luck.

[PS - Whatever you do, make sure you have some sort of back up system.]

Merci for a good discussion

As a “general” rule or guideline…
The “thing” decoding the file into PCM/DSD should be focused on that task and nothing else. Timing, noise, component stability (temperature), etc. This is why Roon recommends selecting the Zone (endpoint) and the Core. It’s why “streamers” don’t generally have disks in them but pluck data off the network.

When considering putting the entire system, from file to digital output, on 1 device just be aware that the device is not entirely focused on just creating a very stable set of bits to be output. Some may hear a difference / some may not but the guidelines are not just there to encourage you to buy more hardware. Separating the digital bits can have similar benefits to separating the analog bits.

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RĂ©ponse simple ?
Pour résumer … simplement