If you thought Roon was too niche for mainstream music listeners — think again. The digital music management and playback platform is gaining traction with a global audience and it’s clear that more and more consumer hi-fi brands see Roon as the future. We know that the initial expenditure seems high (you mean it’s not free??? — don’t be that person) but ask yourself an honest question.
How much money do you spend annually on music? And do you enjoy having to go back and forth between all of the digital music streaming services on your smart phone or laptop looking to see which platform has the specific album version you’re looking for?
Do you want more personalized listening suggestions based on your current library?
Roon centralizes it all and offers access to more music than one could possibly handle in a lifetime. Unless you’re a vampire or Yoda and can pull off that 900 year thing.
If you’re new to Roon and want to learn more about how it works, we have you covered with a primer on the platform and why it makes sense if you already have a digital library saved (both physical CDs and streaming platforms like Tidal and Qobuz) on an external HDD and in the cloud.
Roon also offers the excellent Nucleus music network player that delivers the best possible hardware solution for the platform. We recently reviewed the Nucleus and found it to be the best possible solution in specific scenarios.
One of the benefits of Roon is that you don’t have to use their hardware to enjoy it.
Roon Ready and Roon Tested hardware from almost 200 brands is already available and that list continues to grow. 200 brands is rather mainstream for any high-end audio product when it comes to market adoption.
It’s been a busy quarter for Roon with an impressive array of over 25 new Roon Ready and Roon Tested devices from audio heavyweights like Arcam, Astell&Kern, Bluesound, JBL, Mission, Rotel and more.
Additionally, the brand welcomed 5 new partners into the Roon family, including British loudspeaker pioneers Mission, whose new LX Connect all-in-one hi-fi system is Roon Tested.
Other new partners include Argon Audio, Avik, Silent Angel and Zidoo (featuring three 4K UHD media players that are Roon Ready).
New devices that are Roon Ready include:
- Astell&Kern SE200, SE180 DAP and KANN ALPHA portable audio players – Astell&Kern now have seven Roon-compatible devices
- Arcam ST60 is the company’s first-ever dedicated hi-resolution audio streamer with MQA
- Bluesound Soundbar+ is an audiophile-grade soundbar with Roon Ready
- For JBL’s 75th anniversary, the JBL SA750 is a modern-retro Class G amplifier with streaming capabilities.
For the full list of Roon partner brands and every Roon Ready and Roon Tested device available, visit: roonlabs.com/partners
Roon 1.8 Update
The software is the secret sauce is this scenario and Roon wouldn’t be worth the money if it didn’t offer something truly unique.
Roon is continuously refining and adding features to improve the user experience of the 1.8 release. New updates include a completely redesigned “Versions” view, making it easier to compare different editions of your favorite albums in your own music library, Qobuz and Tidal.
Whether you’re looking for an expanded edition with bonus tracks or want to listen to an even higher-quality version, Roon lets you do this in a couple of clicks.
Also new is one of the most requested features from the Roon community: native control of Roon from your smartphone, even when the screen is locked.
You can now access essential controls (play, skip, pause, volume control) natively from your Android or iOS device without going into the Roon Remote app. Gesture controls for iOS users have also been implemented.
Other updates released over the summer are Daily Mixes – six new personalized daily playlists based on your TIDAL and Qobuz listening history; redesigned TIDAL experience featuring top charts and staff picks; and improved search interface with predictive auto-complete (across artists, albums, tracks, genres, composers and compositions) to make it even easier and faster to get to the music you love.
For more information: roonlabs.com