Audirvana vs Roon


I finally got around to trying Roon. I am currently running a new MacMini with Audirvana and Tidal and now Roon trial. My modest system is Mac-Sonica DAC-Modwright pre-Wyred4sound monos-Von Schweikert VR4-JRs. As much as I appreciate the Roon appearance and extra info, to my ears the Audirvana sound quality is better. Anybody else prefer it over Roon for sound quality? Both are upsampled to max capable. I saw a similar thread a year ago and wanted an update. Thanks. 
tgrisham
well now.. I have not tried Roon... but my system is similar to yours...Furman PL-8 power conditioner > MacBook Pro > Tidal running on Audirvana + > Wyred4Sound Reclocker > SMSL SU-8 DAC > XLR outputs to JBL 310S > JBL 305s = MTM orientation on AirPulse A200. Sounds awesome. I do want to try a tube buffer-preamp for a bit more vibe... Klipsch speakers are next

edit: Macs will not run DSD in Audirvana, unfortunately
After using Audirvana, PureMusic and Amarra on a MacMini streaming via USB to a Yggdrasil DAC, I have given them all up for Roon.

Roon works seamlessly, easily and consistently. I couldn't say the same for any of the other applications.

As far as sound quality, I preferred Amarra, PureMusic and Audirvana on different days. There seemed to be no consistency. One day Audirvana sounded great. The next day Amarra or PureMusic sounded better.

Roon sounds tremendous. 


Thank you. So far the consensus of opinions posted here favor Audirvana over Roon for sound quality and Roon for interface, Roon radio and additional info on the music played. As one poster stated, Roon support suggested modifications to the output to enhance the SQ.  Anyone have suggestions to tweak the Roon output?  I’m all ears. Seriously. Born that way. 😁
You might want to try Euphony Stylus, just download the 30 day trial on a USB stick. In my system SQ is improved over those you mentioned.
Thanks. I see the endpoint license is about $144 and there are some issues with Mac computers. I’ll check back with them in a while. 
Prefer Roon for sound quality and great DSP features! 
No issues with Roon on my Mac here.
I also own Audirvana but Roon wins in my book.
I love Roon, but in my case, upsampling did not sound very good, to either PCM or DSD. 

Roon is usually light on the server, except for upsampling.

I did find the DSD / EQ capabilities of Roon quite nice, and let me match my speakers, remove boom and lift the bass in the digital domain.
@grannyring 
thanks for your input
@onesonido
thanks for your input. Preference is both SQ and features?
@erik_squires 
thanks also. I’ll try letting the DAC upsample instead of the software. 
Much appreciated. TG 
No issues with Roon on my Mac here.
I also own Audirvana but Roon wins in my book.
+1.

My DAC upsamples, so I feed it raw files from Roon.

As long as a Mac meets Roon’s minimum system requirements, then you should be good to go whether upsampling or not.
  • Intel Core i3, Ivy Bridge+
  • 4GB RAM
  • SSD boot drive

FWIW, my Mac is well below the Roon recommended system requirements, and it has been running flawlessly (although I did have occasional problems when I was upsampling...but mine is an 2008 MacMini 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo with only 4gb of RAM).

I have a 2018 MacMini i3 arriving this week.
Will your new Mac have 8 gb of RAM?
I like the software that loads the songs into RAM and plays from there and not the hard drive. Does Roon do this?  I couldn’t be sure from the website. 
Will your new Mac have 8 gb of RAM?
Yes
Roon works seamlessly, easily and consistently. I couldn't say the same for any of the other applications.

As far as sound quality, I preferred Amarra, PureMusic and Audirvana on different days. There seemed to be no consistency. One day Audirvana sounded great. The next day Amarra or PureMusic sounded better.

Roon sounds tremendous.

Sometimes I find myself preferring the SQ of Audirvana, but not consistently. I'm not upsampling, just native rates, so its baffling that they sound different at all (2012 Mac Mini with Uptone JS-2 LPS). 
For user experience and exploring music, Roon is streets ahead.
The Roon look and interface makes Audirvana look like something from the 90's (wish Damien would get rid of that lame 'galaxy' background and make it plain blue like the preferences window).
I know nothing about Audirvana, but am now three-fourths the way through a month-long trial of Roon. I previously used LMS (the Squeezebox management software) to manage my music -- I'd used that for about 15 years.

I'll start by saying that Roon sounds just fine, but I find it no different than what I heard via LMS. I know that's not the correct "audiophile" answer, but I don't care. To me, the choice between Roon and other music management programs is about the user interface and the ease of finding the music you want.

I have mixed emotions about Roon and still haven't decided if it is a keeper. The thing I like the most is the way, once you have specifically selected some music to play, it will continue to play other tracks in the same vein one your initial selections are finished. That's great when you want continuous background music, such as now when I'm working from home.

It is also nice the way it shows you artist bios and info about other musicians and people on an album, sometimes along with an extra photo or two, but that's not worth a paid subscription to me.

The negatives are that for a long time I have primarily selected my music via folder browsing -- I'd see an artist's name and say, "Yup, that's the person I want to hear right now." Roon doesn't show folders. It'll come up with lots of suggestions and its search function is great, but it is just not the same. If I don't keep Roon, it'll be because I'm too set in my ways.

I have about a week left on the Roon trial. Still not sure what I'll do.
I used Roon for about a year.  It worked well but after a while I began to wonder why I needed it.  I decide to try Audirvana, which is considerably less expensive.  Based strictly on sound quality I saw no reason to continue with Roon.  I dumped it and have never regretted the decision.