Does Roon 2.0 require a permanent internet connection?


Last week, we posted a video about Roon 2.0 and its brand new companion app, Arc, which allows Roon to stream outside the home: at the office, on the train, or – my favorite – at the coffee shop. But there would be a wrinkle: the ensuing YouTube comments section chatter was lightly peppered with grunts about Roon 2.0 requiring a working internet connection to be present to stream not just from Tidal and Qobuz, but also local files. In my case, that meant 3TB of FLAC sitting on a hard drive directly connected to a Roon Nucleus+.

Surely these commentators were wrong? From the Roon 2.0 release notes: “Roon Core requires an active internet connection [sic] link” – one could reasonably read there a reaffirmation of an obviousness for the users of Tidal and/or Qobuz. Nonetheless, I thought it was prudent to test my YouTube commenters’ complaints. I pulled the internet cable out of the wall and let Roon 2.0 play from my local library. And playing it did. For five hours (at that time I needed to get back online). Claims refuted, case closed?

Not so fast.

Simmering on Roon’s own community pages was a three week old thread 🔥 on this very subject, in which some users reported as I found – that an internet outage did nothing for the reading local files – while others claimed that Roon 2.0 was crap after less than an hour. It’s time to get on the phone. Roon Labs COO Danny Dulai carefully explained that Roon 2.0 promises “zero minutes” of offline playback for local files. “You’ll probably get more but we can’t guarantee that – so zero minutes is what we’re saying (or you upgrade to 1.8 Legacy)”. How Roon got to this point involves a longer explanation which I detail in the follow-up above.

The takeaway from my two-hour phone call with Dulai is that he and his team have already done the math: that fewer existing users will leave Roon (due to the move from version 2.0 to a permanent internet) than they will join Arc’s remote streaming functionality or as-yet-unknown smart software that is coming, made possible by the move to cloud computing.

🎥 Camera: Olaf von Voss
🎬 Editor: John Darko
🕺🏻 GFX Movement: John Darko
💰 Advertising Segment: Jana Dagdagan

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🎵 Song ID? Playlists of all the music heard in this video – and other videos – are available on PATREON:

Further information: Roon Labs

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