Rossini player apex or non apex vivaldi dac

Seeking some advice here - i have ordered a rossini player apex which will replace my bartok and meridian 808 cd player. I have retained my rossini clock to be used with the rossini player but now have the opportunity through the same dealer to buy a used non apex vivaldi dac at a decent price leaving change for a cd transport and server/streamer. I listen mostly to cds and music from a melco n1a acting as a server over ethernet.
My question, will the rossini player apex sound better for cd/server music v a non apex vivaldi (plus say a decent cd transport circa £2k plus a better server/streamer in the £4k range).
If i do go for the vivaldi have no midterm plans to upgrade to apex nor buy the vivaldi upsampler.

Quite a difficult one to answer but, i have just gone from the rossini player and clock to a vivaldi apex and the difference was rather large.
I know you’re be slightly different to that but seeing that you have a melco like me, this is what i did before i got the upsampler.
Use the melco to stream qobuz or whatever you want, using the melco app.
Connect up melco to vivaldi using USB.
Buy a melco D100 cd drive and connect to melco, this will give you a great ripper and a great cd drive to play cd’s.
Obviously this is if you go vivaldi, but the rossini player with its built in streamer and upsampler is a great bit of kit, but i feel you need to try both ways at home and decide.

Hi Dunc, thanks for the response. I have an older Melco (N1A) that I connect over ethernet , which Melco are you using? sounds like I could go for a newer melco eg n100 plus the d100 cd drive and both are half size units.
does the rossini clock make a difference to your Vivaldi Apex?
I will try and source a home audition of the vivaldi although i wont be able to do a side by side v the rossini player apex.

I’ve never compared the two options you’re looking at directly, but you can’t go wrong with the Vivaldi, and it will open several future upgrade paths that you would not have access to with the Rossini player.

The n100 is a good one especially with a better power supply.
N100 and D100 on to a vivaldi would be my 1st choice and this then also has many future benefits as far as apex, upsampler and clock.

As far as my rossini clock on the vivaldi apex dac, for me it wasn’t worth it and thats why i traded it in against the upsampler

It seems obvious thinking that the Rossini is better than the Bartok and that the Vivaldi is better than the Rossini. It is true. But one think that the “better” are equals if I can say so…It isn’t !

The Rossini is a little bit better than the Bartok, the Vivaldi is hugely better than the Rossini…

Your dCS dealer gave you a good advice, you should follow him/her.

But if you can listen to it that is the best option to make a choice…have fun.

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@ChrisK my experience is different for the case of Rossini vs Bartok. (never listened to Vivaldi - so cannot comment).

When I first time listened to both of them (home demo), I was immediately sure that I’m not going to pay that much amount for Bartok, rather I wud save money for Rossini. And that was in comparison to my existing dacs - Naim NDX2 and PS Audio Direct Stream Sr.

I still think that Rossini really brings in that extra leap in SQ (in every way) that justifies the price point. Bartok does not.


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My 2c, and feel free to laugh/discard:

(a) use the occasion to digitize everything
(b) sell any/all transports in the chain (they will eventually break)
(c) buy Roon Nucleus for $1k and use that as the server over Ethernet (as dCS recommends)
(d) do not buy the Melco or any other “high end” server–dCS is on the record saying their equipment buffers everything
(e) use any available funds to either (e1) cancel Rossini Apex and buy used Vivaldi DAC plus Vivaldi Upsampler; Or (e2) keep Rossini Apex order and buy Rossini/Vivaldi clock



Just a few points to add to the mix above.
I tried a roon nucleus on my system and found it sounded slightly worse than just using the rossini streaming qobuz. All upsampling etc turned off on roon, so that would be worth trying out to see if you hear the same, if you went that way.
Also roon costs a lot, be it monthly or a life subscription.
What happens if roon goes bust?
For one if roon stops then all your music is lost, ie anything you have ripped on its internal drive.

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Some thoughts:

There is no reason why this should be the case. Pls see dCS comments on buffering.

Definitely. You don’t buy a dCS DAC and the let Roon do the DSP. That would be nuts ; )

That is relative. What happens if Melco goes bust? If dCS goes bust?

You should always be saving and backing up to a separate drive and to cloud storage so this can never happen. Most digital music servers have that functionality built in.


Well it did sound more closed in and not as wide, others have also noticed that roon doesn’t sound quite as good.
If melco go bust my melco will still work, my music stored on the drive will still play, if roon goes bust then it becomes just a box that does nothing.
Again if dCS went bust, my dac doesn’t stop working over night, just no more updates etc.its very different in the way it operates.
Hopefully roon will keep on going, but you never know and with them saying they rely on the yearly and monthly subscriptions going forward and with people’s budgets getting tighter, then unfortunately subscriptions like this are the first things that go

It’s time you listen to the “different” streamers yourself, instead of reading the dCS manual.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to compare the Aurender N30SA against the Aurender N20 in the same system, they definitly don’t sound the same. (and dCS Rossini Apex was buffering both ;-))


I would love to hear a technical explanation of why that would be so.

This is what @Phil wrote on this topic: “if you’re pulling data via Ethernet there is a totally separate buffer that is built into the networking hardware that can hold several minutes of audio (depending on sample rate and bit-depth) that the audio is then played from.”

So, is there some property from the Aurender that lingers in the buffer, that enhances the bits before they go to the Ring DAC? What is the mechanism by which this could happen?

Agreed but c) is not working for me. I have a roon nucleus, Melco, qnap, synology as server (and few months ago an Innuos zenith). The Melco is sublime for upnp duties, no other server gets close SQ wise.

I don’t understand why you are so hung up on a technical explanation, by the way, the Aurenders don’t have an ethernet output, but play from a caching SSD (converted USB/SPDIF/AES)

In my opinion both Aurenders (N20 and N30SA) perform better then the internal streamer in the Rossini, even when not using the dCS Rossini’s best input (ethernet)

In my dealers system the Aurenders are connected to the Rossini clock (with extra USB dongle, to switch between 44/48 sample rates)

I am not saying the Aurenders (N20/N30) are the best streamers, there might be better matches in combination with dCS, but these were available for me to listen to in my dealers system (fantastic system by the way to hear even the tiniest of differences/improvements)

Where the SQ differences come from I can only guess, in my system I could well hear a positive result when I changed the standard power supply of my Melco S100 network switch to a Plixir power supply, I also don’t understand why that is, but I enjoy the outcome :slight_smile:

If people prefer the internal Rossini streamer over any other external streamer that’s fine by me too, listening to highend equipment is very subjective. I follow a Dutch youtube channel that is testing audio equipment were they have 2 or 3 people listening in the test (blind test) and only very rarely they have the same opinion and experience.


If you know the Dutch (as I do), you know they disagree about everything and anything :grinning:

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Hi Duncan,

I may be wrong here and I don’t have a “proper” Nucleus here at home to check - I run a “rolled my own” Roon Core on an HP Desktop Mini G1 running an install of Linux - but if you have music ripped to a Nucleus and Roon were to simply cease operation then I believe that your ripped or stored music would still be available to extract from the Nucleus as a network shared folder - obviously the Roon functionality would go down but I don’t think you’d lose access to your ripped / stored data, I’m pretty sure you’d still be able to pull it from the Nucleus to use it under - say - a UPnP server instead.




And I am 100% sure. Roon does not interfere with the actual music files. You just specify their location in Roon.

This is a really interesting point raised by Duncan and I’m using his comment simply because “Value” judgements are really strange things and are something that I find incredibly interesting…

Currently Roon is $12.99 a month (as a monthly sub), $9.99 a month (if paid yearly) or $699.99 (basically five years subscription cost) for a lifetime sub (but due to increase by $130 on the 1st Jan) which I agree is a fair old chunk of change…

Qobuz pricing is essentially the same at $12.99 a month (as a monthly sub), or $129 a year (which is more expensive than Roon per year).

TIDAL pricing is either $9.99 or $19.99 a month.

Spotify pricing is £9.99 for an individual (or £16.99 for a family) per month.

Stepping outside of music subscriptions you can easily pay £100 a month or more for SkyQ if you are doing their cinema and sports packages.

None of the above leave you with anything if the service provider goes down.

OK so if you purchase an album from Qobuz and have it download then you do still have that (assuming that you do have it saved away safely and don’t just rely on re-downloading it) but if you’ve “bought” a movie or whatever on Sky Cinema then if they go down you no longer have access to that movie (unless you paid even more extra to have the movie delivered on disc too).

You can very easily pay more than a lifetime subscription cost for Roon for an interconnect, or a mains cable, or a speaker cable, or a set of speaker cable lifters to raise your speaker cables off the floor (if that’s your bag) and yet Roon - which I know will have had hundreds of man-years of development work sunk into it in the last 18 years - is perceived as expensive.

For as long as there have been computers with the public it has been the case that “software” isn’t seen as having any real value - think about how much game piracy there was back in the cassette based C64 and Speccy days and then in the floppy disc based Atari ST and Amiga days - and yet software is massively person-effort heavy and the one thing that makes just about everything we interact with do something …

It’s just always struck me as curious as to how software is perceived as not having value - and I’m not saying that I don’t also see it that way too until I actually step back and think what effort actually went into it.



I just thought that I would mention that Qobuz provides two routes for downloading as I have found elsewhere that some subscribers do not quite understand this.

One option is to download to the Qobuz application and, yes, if Qobuz goes under and if the app ceases to function the data may be lost.

The other option ( and make sure that you choose this when buying their downloads) is to download to your personal drive. This will come as a zipped file. Personally I download to my PC, unzip then copy to my NAS and backup HDDs. These will remain mine irrespective of the future of Qobuz.

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