Best Server To Run Roon Core

Hi Folks,

I don’t currently run ROON, but would like to begin correctly in order to give it a chance - and I understand that server (hardware) on which Roon core is installed is important for SQ (due to noise reduction and other factors).

What are the best hardware for SQ and usability where ROON core should be installed and why (be it audiophile dedicated servers or modified PCs)? Please comment on the rest of your setup for context if you could.

Thank you in advance.

Ag insider logo xs@2xjmarshak
This depends.  Servers range in price from a few hundred dollars for a NUC up to $35K for a Taiko.  If you are at the very high end, you want to take into account what is your preferred connection, what clock you are going to use, etc...  Do you have a renderer or roon endpoint?  Which one?  

It is always optimal to have server and renderer on different devices when possible.  This is also where  a bit more processing power is desirable since this is what is interfacing with the internet.  

Taiko is undeniably the best, but $35K.  There are many degrees between  NUC and Taiko.  A few options:

Roon has their own servers, the Nucleus and Nucleus+.  These are lovely, very quiet devices that are obviously designed around running roon core.  They will also serve as a rendered.  The difference in need between a Nucleus and Nucleus+ is driven by size of your library and your DSP.  These are very good options for devices that are under $2K nd $3K respectively.  

Antipodes - they offer multiple server solutions as the S30, S40 and K40 that steadily get better.  The cool thing about Antipodes is that they allow for upgrades.  You can use add an external power supply, clock and ripper.  These range from $3K to $9K.  The K40 is extremely appealing as its goal is to be a brilliant server with the best ethernet connection to your renderer possible.  For a straight server, the K40 is insanely good at $9K.  The K50 is their ultimate device but is streamer, player and clock in one box.  

There are a variety of other options including Innuous, Rockna, Auralic, Aurender, etc....   Rockna is insanely good but best with their DACs.  

I am a Roon, Antipodes and Rockna dealer, I have no association with any other brands mentioned.  

There was an interesting discussion on the design and sound quality if the 432evo servers on what’s best forum the 432Evo master at 16k was found to come quite close to the taiko at half of that servers 35k price.

We are super excited by the aeon which at 7k competes with 14k servers from other companies

Dave and troy
Audio intellect nj
Us importers 432evo music servers
Asking what is the best is always a question that can never truly be answered. FWIW, I use the little green computer I5 server for my Roon core and I am very satisfied with it
These are all excellent replies thank you for the recommendations. Yes, I was looking for something in between RPI and Taiko :)

@verdantaudio - regarding your question:

"Do you have a renderer or roon endpoint? Which one? "

- I am not aware of the distinction incase there is one. Could you please clarify what is the distinction ?

Taiko is undeniably the best, but $35K
YIKES! It can't be 20X better than my SGC sonictransporter! Seriously, the Law of Diminishing Returns must kick in hard here, as in so many things in the high-end.