USB Reclocker before dCS Rossini+Clock

My setup (to be soon) is as follows

  • Innuos Zenith Mark III
  • dCS Rossini Clock+DAC
  • Boulder 2110
  • Boulder 2160
  • Magico M3

I read with interest about the Innuos Phoenix and am wondering what difference it might make by adding it between the Zenith Mark III and the dCS Rossini Clock/DAC combo.

Has anybody here done this or anything similar. Could u please share opinions/experiences ??

Basically there are two reclocks…a base reclock of the data on usb bus giving proper chunks of data out to the dac…and another reclock of the signal by the rossini clock.

Thank You!!

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Hi alvinjamur and welcome to the forum.

The Innuos Phoenix and other reclockers/USB conditioners serve to try to correct the inherent errors that use of a USB interface inevitably introduces. The answer is not to use the USB interface at all but to use the Innuos as NAS and therefore use the ethernet port. However for stable results you will need to load MinimServer as the UPnP server software. This could be done on earlier Innuos versions but I am unsure about the MKIII. If this cannot be done then, if not too late, I would recommend a Melco in preference which comes with MinimServer as its default server. This will provide the best sound quality. In either case you then use the dCS Mosaic controller app and not the Innuos or Melco app. There is a current thread on the very subject of USB v. ethernet:

I have used a USB interface with my Vivaldi and with the USB source conditioned by an ifi audio device. The device certainly brought an audible improvement but this was of a minor impact compared to abandoning USB for an ethernet connection ( initially via a dCS network Bridge and latterly via the Vivaldi Upsampler).

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my experience so far: melco and innuos with upnp/ethernet sound much better than usb. i even tested usb/spdif…same results…ethernet attached sounds much better imho…
setup: rossini+clock, tellurium q streaming, tellurium usb, melco, innuos (sold now), used cisco and direct links…

I read docs a little more closely. I’ll use the Innuos as a Roon Core basically…for all other media, I’ll get at ‘em with the ethernet port…

Thanks for the clarifications…

I’m unclear on something. Why not just use your Innuos Zenith Mk III as a Roon server across the network for everything? Perhaps I missed something, but I see no reason to segregate your playback that way. On the Innuous site, they clearly contemplate this setup:

Within innuOS, Roon can be used in 3 different scenarios:

  • As a Roon Core Server and Player

Connects to a Digital to Analog Converter (DAC) via USB or other Roon-Ready devices connected to the network. This is the most usual scenario where you can use the innuOS server as an integrated Roon solution for both managing and playing your music. This also works as a multi-room system with the addition of other Roon-Ready devices.

  • As a Roon Core Server only

Connects to other Roon-Ready devices connected to the network. In this case, the innuOS server does not play any music, only serves music to other Roon-Ready devices. This is useful for users who focus on a multi-room system (e.g. using with Sonos) or want to use a specific Roon-Ready device for their Hi-Fi system, such as the dCS network bridge.
[Third example snipped]

you’re right- Innuos can be used in both ways…

Sorry…I was not clear as I was half zzzz when I wrote that this AM. I will basically end up using the Innuos as a Roon Core. My own media (burnt from cds) will go on the drive if the Zenith M3…

Great, just don’t forget my advice:

Alvin, not to put a damper on your choice of the Innuos as such, but, depending on the size of your music file library, (and what processing you might want to do), the Zenith Mark III with it’s Intel Quad core Pentium N4200 CPU is a lower spec than the minimum recommended by Roon (Intel Core i3), and as such is likely to be severely underpowered as a Roon Core for anything but the lightest load.

I highly recommend you browse through before you decide on a Roon Core platform.

Anup makes a very good point. The lower horsepower of the Mk III might make it more suitable as a Minim/UPnP server, as recommended by Pete. Having used both, I prefer Roon, but there are different reasons for preferring one over the other, and for running both as some do here.

I did see that before I bought it. It is an open box now. Oh, well! It is basically going to act as a server of sorts into my single system.

what would be the ideal box be that could also function as a roon core?

My apologies, I somehow had the impression that you hadn’t already purchased the Innuos! (problem with reading a thread too fast :relaxed: )

I’m not sure there’s an “ideal” box out there, different people have different priorities for what they want their Roon Core to do (from Upsampling, to EQ’ing, to Crossfeed, etc etc).

Generally speaking though, at least a desktop-class CPU, i.e. Intel Core i-family, or AMD Rizen-family, and as much RAM as you can afford (8GB and above), with an SSD drive for the OS/App, and high-speed storage and networking.

All that usually means a proper Compute platform, which tends to be electrically and acoustically noisy (from fans and such), which means you want this thing far away from your HiFi system, so you need to get your home networking sorted as well.

The rabbit hole runs deep :wink:

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Ideal? A Roon Nucleus. I’ve run Roon on a PC server, laptop and desktop, various iMacs, a Mac mini, even a MacBook Pro, an i7 NUC, several Synology NAS. It has never run better than on the Nucleus+. The Nucleus does not help you out for ripping the way the Innuos does, but I prefer to rip from my desktop using dBpoweramp anyway.

I have purchased the Innuos but dealer will take it back and I can get the Aurender N20 instead. Am aware I cannot use Roon (aurender is not roon endpoint). What is interesting to me is that I can get the
rossini clock to talk to the n20 (as per specs). This will be killer…

OR I could just keep the Innuos and have it be a roon core. I have about 4500 odd cds and an itunes playlist etc that i want to load onto whichever device I finally end up with…Need to decide tmoro…

The clock input on the Aurender N20 would only be useful if you intend to use the N20’s AES or S/PDIF outputs. But if you use those, then you’re out of luck on DXD and DSD files, as neither of those interfaces will support more than 24/192k (the N20 doesn’t support Dual-AES3 for anything higher).

For DXD /DSD you’d need to use the N20’s USB or Ethernet interfaces, but then the clock sync input serves no useful purpose as those are packet based digital interfaces, where Word clock has no meaning.

Stick with the Innuos, and scale up to a better Server if/when you hit any bottlenecks :wink:



thank u very much for this explanation. so, i have to ask : what is a “better” server?

You have to define what you want it to do. I like Aurender a lot, and if I didn’t care about Roon, and was dying to spend 10x of the Nucleus, I would probably own one. I don’t need CD ripping built in, but I did want internal SSD storage, so that plus Roon and network streaming pretty much defined my feature set. I would like a fiber port, which Lumin offers in their network DAC but not yet their transport. For now, the Roon Nucleus+ meets the most of my requirements. For me, there is nothing else that can deliver a packet stream, with the interface I want, any better. So, prioritize your feature set, and then pick the one that comes closest. Remember, streaming over network solves an awful lot of problems, and lessens the need to go down some of the rabbit holes out there. :wink:


+1 on that. When it comes to servers I start with Roon and go from there. And for me the Nucleus+ does Roon better than anything else would seem to. Easy to set up and manage, works beautifully with an internal SSD, it’s silent, and it doesn’t even look half bad.

The only thing that I find myself wondering about on occasion is if I’d get better sound by using an Innuos as a target to play to from the Nucleus+. Everything I’ve read on this forum suggests that I wouldn’t — 1s and 0s being just that until they hit the jack in the back of my Bartok.

That means I have:
Nucleus+ – switch – Gigafoil – Bartok — a happy pair of ears.

…and no need for anything more complex or expensive than the Nucleus+. Eventually the Innuos pondering goes away in a wash of Roon-driven loveliness.


So…I guess to keep it all within IP (not usb)…i could run network cable from router into LAN port of Innuos and then a shorter Network cable from streamer output of Innuos into port on Rossini…

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That’s what I’d do if I had an Innuos. Whether or not that’s correct or not is another thing entirely!

Can’t imagine the world will end if we’re wrong :upside_down_face: