Why do I "need" Audirvana, Roon or the like versus just Tidal App?


Hi, I stream Tidal MQA and their hifi via my Macbook Pro. I use the Tidal app on the MBpro which unpacks MQA, contains my playlists etc. In the future, I may also stream ripped cds on very rare occasion from a connected hard drive, as well as any hi res audio files I may purchase. However, 99.9% is an is likely to continue to be Tidal streaming. Maybe, just maybe adding Quboz or Amazon in the future...


I feed this from my MAC via USB out to my integrated amp and DAC (Peachtree Nova 300). I have no plans to have a separate server etc in the short term, …but may do so in the future.


I cannot understand what, if anything, Audirvana (or Roon and the like) would bring to.the table in my scenario. Perhaps better MQA unpacking? Slicker interface? Better sound quality?

I would greatly appreciate you all's thoughts on this! Thank you very much.


bogbeat
Are you people aware that the most well known music artists make only a few hundred dollars a year on their music being streamed by Tidal, Spotify and others?  Thats right, only a few hundred.  Knowing this, I will never stream.   Because of this, many good musicians are calling it quits.  I always purchase the physical media so as to give the artist a little extra.

So all of you who are streaming music for a small pittance are actually harming the musicians you love so much.  Think about it.
Roon has a great music discovery algorithm, streams and DSP based equalization, multi device synchronization, etc.

It lets you treat your ripped music and Tidal together as one giant virtual library.

I use Tidal on my phone, and Roon when I'm home.
I can not speak to the Apple products but I stream Qobuz, via Audirvana from a dedicated lenovo laptop. I tested and trialed Tidal, The tidal and Qobuz apps & Roon.  The SQ was noticeably better with the Audirvana & Qobuz pairing.  The software assumes control of the digital sound path, bypasses the laptops resident mixers, becomes the only thing using the Wasapi driver and ensures end to end bit perfect processing before sending to my DAC.  It is a little different with Mac OS. While I am not a huge fan of the interface limitations, I care about the quality more and for that reason, for me, Audirvana is necessary.  The fact that all future updates are paid for with the initial price (Was $75) makes it a great value.
I had Tidal HiFi on a laptop, and it was great for finding new music. The SQ was not as good as CD and far below good vinyl. Was this because I wasn't using a separate DAC?
@noromance 
Yes.  Test again with a trial of Audirvana (Free) & a quality stand alone DAC.  Night and Day.  
My point exactly.  When records and CD’s (physical media) were in vogue, the artists made enough to survive and their live events made them rich over time.  With all concerts cancelled this year and into next year, many artists can’t survive on what the streaming services pay out.  
You don’t. Unless you have a driver.
Stand alone streamer sounds better than audiovarna on a computer. Use the computer to discover music.
Refraining from streaming does nothing for musicians. Hit the tip jar - good karma.
The record companies screwed them back in the day.  Nothing has changed.
Thanks fuzztone.  What do you mean by "driver?"
As a dieta gard roon user 

Roon can offer upconversion of tidals 16 44  to highres pcm or dsd and many dacs sound better this way
“Why do I "need" Audirvana, Roon or the like versus just Tidal App?”

You don’t....IMO, Roon is overrated. If you’re going to keep the MACBook, Tidal or Qobuz apps are more than adequate to perform all the necessary basic functions. And more importantly they don’t mess with incoming bit-stream like Roon or Audirvana. Roon or Audirvana were developed to overcome the inherent flaws of streaming audio from all purpose computers, like your MACBook.

If you want better streaming experience, look into dedicated ‘audio’ streamers whenever you’re ready.
I don’t understand why so many people dislike Roon, if one loves music, Roon is fantastic to discover musicians, you will notice I say musicians and not music, music we can discover other ways easily, but hearing a tune in Roon and maybe liking the drummer, one can just click on the drummers name and find all the other music he has been involved with, I think that is a great feature.
Also the Roon interface is for me great, the product is not perfect, but for me it is very close and is being improved all the time.
I like it.
Gryphon +1......I think some who dislike Roon resent having to pay for the service although it costs next to nothing
Hi Bogbeat,
There are two good reasons why you will want to consider streaming Tidal via Audirvana:
a) Tidal as of now does not provide a mobile app to allow remote control of your MPro-installed instance of Tidal.  Audirvana does, and its interface for Tidal is different but very useable. 
b) Unless your DAC is unpacking MQA downstream, you are reliant upon a software unpack on your MPro.  Audirvana not only unpacks MQA MUCH better, but also plays your resident albums exceptionally well. I am running from a PC, but the difference here is mind-bending.  All for a free trial, and then purchase price is less than $100.
I cannot speak to Roon, etc., but chose this route from the intercomparison reviews out there.

For the record, I'm running Laptop PC -> Audirvana-> Tidal -> Ayre QB-9 Twenty ->Ayre AX-5 -> Paradigm Persona 3F's.
Good luck.

* Forgot to add, I use Audirvana mobile app on iPad tablet to control everything remotely.  - Sandstone
Thanks everyone.  Hi Sandstone!  FYI, I am currently evaluating Audirvana with their trial.  I haven't gotten around to trying the mobile app yet, but sounds like you have it rocking!

Re b): no, the DAC is not unpacking downstream, so to your point, it needs to happen in the Macbook Pro.  I was wondering what did this better, the Tidal app or Audirvana.  Thanks for sorting that out for me.
If you need frustration try roon.   Lost connections randomly throughout the night.   Meanwhile my Qubuz plays flawlessly thru my ProStreamBox S2.   Look at the forum for many examples.  Yeah I’m super angry nd frustrated about it.   
ROON! I’ve been streaming Tidal for about a year, and love it. I got a Roon Core server/streamer ( https://www.smallgreencomputer.com/collections/audio-server/products/essential-server-player-solutio... ) several months ago, and I can’t imagine giving up Roon--ever. It takes streaming to a level I hadn’t imagined.

Imagine Tidal paired with Wikipedia, where all the artists, albums, tracks, notes, lyrics are hyperlinked and/or displayable. Click, click, click and you’ve taken a deep dive into discovering more new music than you imagined possible. You can arrange playlists, sort many different ways, and organize your library. I just started ripping all my CDs to the server.

$10 a month for Roon, and it’s indispensable, imo. I use an Amazon Kindle 10" tablet as my "remote". You can run the Roon CORE on a PC/Mac, a Roon Nucleus server, or a 3rd party server-streamer like mine. Wyred4Sound makes a nice one, as does Innuos. Your core holds your ripped music and the Roon Core OS, and that streams to your endpoint/streamer. You can have multiple zones in other rooms and stream to those using your server. Music throughout the house!

You can do a 30-day trial, and run the core from a computer on your network to get started, and use the desktop app to control. It’s a cheap way to try it out.

They have just updated Roon to v1.8 and for me it's been flawless since day 1. Some are having glitches but Roon will sort those out quickly. They have an awesome development team, and really care about their product. Ignore the naysayers.




The musicians you speak of who are making pennies on a dollar for their music have a "choice" of whether to have their material on Tidal at all in the first place. So begrudging a streaming service for their contractual deals with artists is silly. As they don't have to be part of it if they choose not to. Copyrights.....
Dug up this old thread.  Today I tested the Qobuz application again, playing Ben Harpers "Winter is for Lovers". Did side by side comparison with Audirvana playing the same high res tracks. 24/96 to my stand alone DAC.  There is no comparison, Audirvana player of same song has much more detail, Shimmer on all of the high notes, and even more reveal of his fingers sliding on the frets. Harlem is a good one to tell all the differences. Audirvana removes a "veil" that exists and I suspect the same reason I like this clarity better than with the Roon test of same. 
Hi phcollie,

I tried to like Audirvana.  I downloaded the latest demo (Mac) and it was a frequent source of random noise, distortion and hiss.  It didn't matter if I was streaming Tidal or Qobuz through it.  Same result.   Damien had me send him logs, etc.  But no solution for me.  So, I bought into the ROON thing.. Sonore Optical Rendu Lite and Small Green Computer Sonic Transport.   So far I am happy. 
I understand.....I have the legacy 3.5 paid version.  On a Mac, that version functions differently as I recall but can not remember the details. The older macs had a usb conflict and some issues with "integer mode".
Works flawlessly on Windows 10 64bit.  The old website detailed some of this but not the new studio site they have up.  Not being judgmental at all but Apple can just be a general pain in the ass.  Some guys had great luck with the post 2008 Macbooks but it still had to fudge the stream a bit compared to the absolute bit perfect with the Windows boxes.