Source SQ (CD vs ROON)

I’ve recently upgraded my speakers to Wilson Audio Sasha 2 (coming from WA Sophia). While the new speakers are able to reproduce low frequencies much better than my previous speakers I feel that the sound is more transparent when listening music from my Accuphase CD player (DP 67) connected to Bartok+Rossini Clock than from ROON playing Tidal/Qobuz out of Bartok+Rossini. Does that make sense? Would upgrading to Rossini change things significantly? Thanks. Franco

Hi Franco,
just to get it right… your DP67 is connected via digital out to dCS- and this sounds better than streaming?
If so try to stream qobuz directly from Mosaic first- skip roon here!
I found that roon "adds " something…
What I can tell you so far is that my ripped CD collection sounds better than qobuz (of course is qobuz better with high-res)

@T38.45, that’s correct. The DP67 is connected to the Bartok via SPDF. I forgot to mention that I use HAF filters when using Roon. I’ll make a comparison CD vs Mosaic (no HAF filters). Thanks. Franco

I’ve read similar sentiments in the past few months about CD sounding better than streaming, in different ways. But streaming will always win with quantity :grinning:

I’ve been thinking about using a CD transport with the Bartok as a throwback using physical media.

During the pandemic with a lot of time at home I went through and culled my CD collection, getting rid of most and keeping a few of my favorite albums. That was an interesting archaeological exercise because different music/albums were part of different periods of my life. Some of the music that I loved at some point I’m no longer interested in.

I’m also going to try Qobuz through Mosaic. But the advantage of Roon is I can select a ripped version of an album vs stream, if I have one.

As you can with Mosaic. You just select UPnP instead of Qobuz in the menu to see your ripped albums.

Yes the two sources are then not displayed together on the same screen and but the latter provision can be a disadvantage in my view. For example if I asked Roon to find Beethoven’s 5th symphony, given the local file/Qobuz integration I will be shown over 300 selections and my rips and purchased downloads will be somewhere in there and I would have to scroll trough to locate them! Of course if I know that I want , say, the 1962 HvK version in 24/96 I could presumably specify that, but then the integration offers no real advantage IMO.

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@PAR, @andrewt, do you find that Roon adds some bass or loudness effect?

@PAR I have not done tests on this, but using Mosaic instead of Roon for Qobuz I’m hearing better flow to the music. Might simply be that bypassing Roon removes one additional layer in the path; less processing.

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I can’t answer that as I am not a Roon subscriber for various reasons.

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@PAR I tried to connect via UPnP but that did not work. All of my music is on a Roon Nucleus+ — is there any way to get visibility/access to that in Mosaic?

I do not know the Nucleus in any detail. However I assume it is basically an Intel NUC with the Roon core installed on it.

To play your local files via Mosaic you need to able to serve those files to Mosaic. So you need to install UPnP server software on the Nucleus or on another network storage device ( that may be necessary as the Nucleus could be dedicated exclusively to the Roon Core - if so I have found another reason not to subscribe to Roon) . The server software that is supported by dCS Mosaic is MinimServer.

https://minimserver.com

I am sure that other members who use both and have hands on experience of which I am lacking can explain further if necessary.

Indeed. But why advise people about it then?

I am not. I am saying that the OP needs a UPnP server to play his local files. Agreed ? I am then saying that he may need to install this on his Nucleus. However I am not sure if he will be able to do this and that others who have more knowledge than me may be able to advise him further.

OK?

Yes, that is all. And it does not have to be Minimserver.

I know you don’t like Tidal, Roon etc.

And I did not say that it has to be. I said :

If there is other UPnP server software supported by dCS please advise.

It does not need to be advised by dCS to work. They just do not support it. Asset works fine for me.

Andrew, only if your Roon Core is Digital Signal Processing the bit stream, or if the Server is less than optimal, like an underpowered CPU/RAM, then you can expect to hear a difference vs. Mosaic.

Otherwise, when both Roon Core and Mosaic’s UPnP Servers are running optimally, there will be no difference between Roon vs. Mosaic playback as both are able to deliver bit-perfect synchronised bit streams to the dCS DAC. dCS’ own post on this question is worth revisiting if you haven’t already :grinning:;

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It’s a tricky issue because I think it involves subjective opinions. Not to mention possible differences in masters between a particular CD that you own versus whatever you’re comparing it to from your streaming source provider.

With network streaming, it’s very easy to objectively verify that a bit-stream is perfectly reproducing the source file error-free and properly synchronised. However, with a CD transport, that’s not always as easily validated.

Compared to bit-perfect streams, a CD transport can only be less than bit-perfect, in which case your preference is really a subjective one. Not very different perhaps to other subjective preferences such as Tubes vs. Solid state etc etc. :wink:

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Thanks all. It’s probably a fair assumption that you may not be able to install just anything on a Roon Nucleus since it’s a Roon device. However, I also have a NAS that I use for photography; it’s hardwired to the network just as the Bartok is.

But installing and managing a server to make audio files accessible may be beyond my IT expertise. I’m open to experimenting with this if anyone can point me to an online resource to walk me through the process, or perhaps just outline it in non-technical ways.

I could copy over my audio files and see what happens.

I have nothing against Roon. I love it and it works beautifully. But so does the Bartok. I’m open to tinkering with Mosaic and bypassing other apps since the Bartok can do that. It simplifies the chain of connected devices and apps.

Ideally, one should have all local music files in a single location, like a NAS. Then just configure all your servers, e.g Roon Core, MinimServer, Asset, etc. to point to that NAS’s network share-folder as containing all music files.

That way you never have to duplicate your music files across servers, and installing new ripped local music is simple, just copy files onto that NAS network share folder, and each Server will independently update itself with the new music.

In your case Andrew, if your local music files are located on your Roon Core, then when you setup your new UPnP Server, in it’s configuration, point to Roon’s database as the location of the music files. Roon makes the music file storage database accessible over network share; https://help.roonlabs.com/portal/en/kb/articles/roon-os-data-directory

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@Anupc, thanks. The other difference that I’ve noted is that when listening to a CD I can set the volume much higher than when I’m streaming music from Roon. Does that make sense?