Need Advice With Roon Core

I have an Intel NUC8i7 arriving sometime today, thanks to my loving wife, for my Birthday. My setup is all PS Audio with a DS Dac for processing signals. Should I set up ROCK or should I go with Windows 10 and then load the appropriate Roon Core? The Roon forum is split in the recommendations.

One other question, Would an Akasa Fan-less case be worth acquiring?

I also have the options of buying HQPlayer and Fidelizer has anyone tried these? They’re not that expensive in the big picture.

All advice is welcome.

I would go with a Linux-based setup over Windows 10. Roon Rock is Linux. Windows 10 costs money and is a little bloated even if you spend a lot of time paring it down.


It depends whether you will use your nuc for other purposes. Rock will run only Roon. You cannot even use HQplayer along with it.

So, if you are planning to use HQPlayer or any other piece of software go with Windows (or Linux) + Roon core.

I have experience with Roon + HQPlayer. Sweet sound. I kept the upsampling to PCM 176, letting the DirectStream filters kick in to upsampler to 352, and afterwards DSD.

One last advice: some NUCs tend to be noisy, both mechanically (CPU fan) and electrically (usb output). If you go with HQPlayer, even more so. If you have the appropriate conditions, I would keep the nuc away from the listening room, and use a dedicated and silent endpoint, such as sonore rendu.

I believe the investment in the rendu will bring you more joy than the investment inHQPlayer. If you must keep the nuc in the same room, I would go with the Matrix, to clean up your connection. Also a better investment than HQPlayer, in my point of view.

Hope it helps

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Another thing: if you use Rock, you will have to keep your music files in a separate hard disk. Rock won’t access the files should they be kept in the same hd where Rock resides.

The whole point of this exercise is to have a dedicated computer running a Roon core. I currently have a QNAP 4 bay NAS with a fairly large library. I also have a Matrix on my current setup. I’ve pretty much decided on an Akasa Turing fanless solution.

You want your music on another hard drive and the Roon OS on an internal SSD.

Yes. I just wanted to give the heads up, because almost no one talks about it

Then it all comes down to what use you will put the nuc. The Rock is the best option to have an appliance-like device (“auto updataple”, no maintenance etc). I use it myself

I used a less powerful NUC (a recent 7i3, I forget the exact model) since I am still deciding if I want to stick with Roon or not. I decided to go with Win10–it’s working smoothly, and I uninstalled and pared down everything that I wouldn’t be using. I also run a few other processes that I offloaded from my NAS, and everything’s running smoother now since resources on the NAS are no longer taxed. The video server I use only runs on Windows, so that kind of decided it for me. The i3 is running well, but my library is only 55,000+ songs and 4,600+ albums, which isn’t all that taxing–I am only running Roon Core on the NUC, not the player or renderer.

I created a user account that will log in by itself after a reboot, so it can run and restart unattended. That way, the NUC can be located anywhere on the network. I have it in my TV rack at the moment, as I used the 4K TV as the “monitor” for it (and bought a really cheap wireless Logitech keyboard/mouse set to go with it). But using Remote Desktop from my other computers, I can get into the NUC just like I’m sitting in front of it with keyboard/video/mouse and don’t even need to use an attached monitor anymore. I probably will move it to my networking shelf in the basement soon, once I do some reorganizing.

I get Win10 Pro licenses cheap on eBay (it involves selling scrapped hardware attached to valid and current Windows licenses–several years in, I’ve never had a problem with any of these licenses being deactivated or flagged). I considered Windows Server, but didn’t see any advantage in doing so (although I am familiar with using Server).

I used the standard Intel case the NUC came in–it’s across the room so I never hear a fan running in it (if it even has one). As I mentioned, this doesn’t even need to be near the audio rack, at least in my system, so the fan can make all the noise it wants.

Generally agree with the above, optimal is a dedicated Roon Rock device with music files stored separately. It you want to use it for sending emails, then use Windows 10.