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 Post subject: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2017 2:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 1:54 pm
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Location: Edmonton, AB, CA
Hi all,

After playing around with Roon for the last couple weeks I'm really enjoying it!

Roon offers a 10% discount if you buy a 3-pack Lifetime or yearly license - I'd prefer a Lifetime myself.

I spoke to Roon to be sure this is how it's intended to work and their response is here:

"Hi Matthew,

Thanks for reaching out! Yes, you can gift yourself a membership. Your card will be charged the full amount for the 3-pack, and then you will be given 3 codes that are accessible via your account page and can be sent to the respective recipients."

So if two others would like a membership, please say so here or in a private message and we can get a slight discount. The price is $1347USD for three licenses. I have a credit card that doesn't charge exchange fees so that saves another 2-3%. I just don't know exactly what the conversion would be but roughly around $615CAD/each.

Please see my feedback and also reach out if you would like to chat first.

Cheers,
Matthew


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 2:27 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 2:07 pm
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Location: Saskatoon, SK, CA
I've been trying to do a comparison of what is out there for hosting and playing music files from a NAS. As expected, there's everything from freeware up to "$900 boutique power cable" type of stuff. Roon was a surprise; its $700 CAD price point puts it squarely on the boutiquey end of the spectrum. As much as I'd like to give it a good shot, I just can't wrap my head around the insanely high price point. Sure, there are guys saying "it's totally worth it," but there are also guys saying that $900 power cables, interconnects, HDMI cables, are totally worth it. Digging around a little about the company doesn't yet give me warm and fuzzies either in terms of its culture and sustainability.

If the price were about 1/5 where it was, it might be within the realm of sane things to consider. As far as Roon is concerned, I'll watch it from the cheap seats for a while before I try and reframe my cognitive functions to accept such a high price point for a player.

More people are starting to adopt NASs in their data ecosystems with multi platform endpoints, and it's hopefully a matter of not too much time until the products available to administrate that ecosystem are mature and competitive.

Sorry to jack this thread; if the price point were less egregiously insane, I'd be interested.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 3:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 12, 2005 10:33 pm
Posts: 188
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
ToddSecksington wrote:
I've been trying to do a comparison of what is out there for hosting and playing music files from a NAS. As expected, there's everything from freeware up to "$900 boutique power cable" type of stuff. Roon was a surprise; its $700 CAD price point puts it squarely on the boutiquey end of the spectrum. As much as I'd like to give it a good shot, I just can't wrap my head around the insanely high price point. Sure, there are guys saying "it's totally worth it," but there are also guys saying that $900 power cables, interconnects, HDMI cables, are totally worth it. Digging around a little about the company doesn't yet give me warm and fuzzies either in terms of its culture and sustainability.

If the price were about 1/5 where it was, it might be within the realm of sane things to consider. As far as Roon is concerned, I'll watch it from the cheap seats for a while before I try and reframe my cognitive functions to accept such a high price point for a player.

More people are starting to adopt NASs in their data ecosystems with multi platform endpoints, and it's hopefully a matter of not too much time until the products available to administrate that ecosystem are mature and competitive.

Sorry to jack this thread; if the price point were less egregiously insane, I'd be interested.


Would $10/month sound more reasonable?

That's basically what the subscription model is for $100/year - for that you get full metadata access to Allmusic and of course the Room software.

Not that different from a Netflix, Cable or other subscriptions....


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 3:53 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
restock wrote:

Would $10/month sound more reasonable?

That's basically what the subscription model is for $100/year - for that you get full metadata access to Allmusic and of course the Room software.

Not that different from a Netflix, Cable or other subscriptions....


No, I wouldn't consider $10/month reasonable. That's the cost of my subscription to Deezer premium, which gives me a very tangible product for my money.

I use Logitech Media Server, and it's more than adequate for my needs. I do realize that Roon provides some juicy extras, but $10/month for merely a software license seems overly expensive.

Although I like what I've seen on a friend's computer, I can't say that I feel it's worth that kind of money.

Jason


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 4:05 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
doctor_big wrote:
No, I wouldn't consider $10/month reasonable. That's the cost of my subscription to Deezer premium, which gives me a very tangible product for my money.

With Artists being paid $0.001 for one stream, it seems you are paying $10/month primarily to a software company.

Roon is very tangible if you have a sizeable music collection - the organization, metadata and free updates are quite signifcant, and not that different or less valuable than the interface Deezer offers....

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 4:24 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
restock wrote:
doctor_big wrote:
No, I wouldn't consider $10/month reasonable. That's the cost of my subscription to Deezer premium, which gives me a very tangible product for my money.

With Artists being paid $0.001 for one stream, it seems you are paying $10/month primarily to a software company.

Roon is very tangible if you have a sizeable music collection - the organization, metadata and free updates are quite signifcant, and not that different or less valuable than the interface Deezer offers....


Whatever you say....


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 5:48 pm 
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Location: Saskatoon, SK, CA
This is a good discussion, even if somewhat off topic, but at least we are in the right forum topic area.

700 bucks is on par with a major appliance or a substantial piece of furniture. It's a very steep price point compared to its competitors that range from freeware to freemium to about 70 bucks, or 1/10 the cost of Roon. And unless I missed something, that doesn't get you any content other than what you would pay for on top of that on the side with a streaming service.

The use cases for NAS-based music collections seem relatively new, with home NAS setups only existing for about 10 years, and the ascendancy of public NAS storage products like WD MyCloud being only in the last couple of years. This trend in technology towards personal "cloud" servers is likely to continue as usage and service models evolve.

In my case, I have a diverse collection of digital music in a variety of formats, mostly mp3 and FLAC, stored on a NAS, and I'm working towards porting all of my couple thousand titles of vinyl and CD content over to high res digital. I now need a solid way to serve that media to multiple endpoints in multiple OSs, whether I am travelling or in my living room in front of my stereo. I don't always need to be engrossed in the Roon experience; portability and endpoint-agnostic play and shuffle functionality are essential. This use case seems to have arrived at a point that is similar to other netwok data storage applications, although the server/player application has not yet caught up. Someone in the IT field feel free to clarify anything I'm glossing over or omitting or just wrong, I'd like very much to understand this more completely.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a player such as Roon, while certainly filling a gap in the available technology, doesn't seem like it can continue charging such high prices indefinitely. Sooner or later (and it may have already happened with JRiver, Audirvana, Foobar, Plex, Kodi, Logitech, etc.), numerous competitors will organically develop into feature-par alternatives. So is the ultimate strategy of Roon to cash in on this market gap before it closes and then cash out into a hipster utopia of free range locally sourced neck tattoos and vegan wet-birthing body modification? Or is it a sustainable architecture that can turn an honest profit for a significant period of time, and become a mainstream utility neck and neck with its competitors? Is this a few talented developers being stood on by some 30something corporate bubble sharks, or is it the real deal? It doesn't smell like the open source ethos that you find underlying many of the competitors.

TLDR: hipster body art is probably chotchy


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 6:11 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
ToddSecksington wrote:
And unless I missed something, that doesn't get you any content other than what you would pay for on top of that on the side with a streaming service.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a player such as Roon, while certainly filling a gap in the available technology, doesn't seem like it can continue charging such high prices indefinitely. Sooner or later (and it may have already happened with JRiver, Audirvana, Foobar, Plex, Kodi, Logitech, etc.), numerous competitors will organically develop into feature-par alternatives.


While I don't fully agree with the pricing structure for Roon (I would prefer a $10/month model), comparing it to JRiver, AudioNirvana, leaves out a major part of what Roon does:

1. Roon manages your music library and provides a player interface, just like the JRiver, AudioNirvana, iTunes, etc.
2. Roon enriches the information for each album with reviews, links, cross references, and metadata from Allmusic and other sites. That content is expensive and requires to be kept up to date. Roon has a permanent subscription to Allmusic for this service. This content goes beyond what is offered with any streaming service.

Now in principle one could argue that you can get that content for free on Allmusic.com - however there only at the cost of seeing web ads. Also that second part is closer to the music references and descriptions available in Tidal, Deezer, and Spotify - although none come quite close to the ease of information flow of Roon.

I have a fairly large library with over a 2000 titles (all transferred from CD) - Roon has allowed me to complete rediscover that library, plus all the cross references that allowed me to discover new music. It has been well worth the cost of 50 CDs to me.

-- 15 May 2017 02:24 --

ToddSecksington wrote:
Sooner or later (and it may have already happened with JRiver, Audirvana, Foobar, Plex, Kodi, Logitech, etc.), numerous competitors will organically develop into feature-par alternatives.


It is probably worth noting that JRiver and other software runs at around $30-50/year as well - I got JRiver v18 in 2012. Five years later we are on v22 so 4 upgrades worth $30-50/each. Same for Pure Music and Amarra.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 6:34 pm 
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Location: Saskatoon, SK, CA
restock wrote:
ToddSecksington wrote:
And unless I missed something, that doesn't get you any content other than what you would pay for on top of that on the side with a streaming service.

While I don't fully agree with the pricing structure for Roon (I would prefer a $10/month model), comparing it to JRiver, AudioNirvana, leaves out a major part of what Roon does:

1. Roon manages your music library and provides a player interface, just like the JRiver, AudioNirvana, iTunes, etc.
2. Roon enriches the information for each album with reviews, links, cross references, and metadata from Allmusic and other sites. That content is expensive and requires to be kept up to date. Roon has a permanent subscription to Allmusic for this service. This content goes beyond what is offered with any streaming service.

Now in principle one could argue that you can get that content for free on Allmusic.com - however there only at the cost of seeing web ads. Also that second part is closer to the music references and descriptions available in Tidal, Deezer, and Spotify - although none come quite close to the ease of information flow of Roon.

I have a fairly large library with over a 2000 titles (all transferred from CD) - Roon has allowed me to complete rediscover that library, plus all the cross references that allowed me to discover new music. It has been well worth the cost of 50 CDs to me.

It is probably worth noting that JRiver and other software runs at around $30-50/year as well - I got JRiver v18 in 2012. Five years later we are on v22 so 4 upgrades worth $30-50/each. Same for Pure Music and Amarra.


Hmm, a couple others to add to the pile for evaluation.

That's a good point about the metadata cross references, that is cool, but I just can't quite wrap my head around the pricing model. It's a lot of money to pay for what others do at a fraction of the cost.

I'm glad I stumbled back onto CAM, it's good to find some forum discussion around these subjects.

I wonder where the state of the technology will be in a couple years, hope to find some more commentary on the CAM threads.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 2:47 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2009 8:26 am
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
-- 15 May 2017 02:24 --

ToddSecksington wrote:
Sooner or later (and it may have already happened with JRiver, Audirvana, Foobar, Plex, Kodi, Logitech, etc.), numerous competitors will organically develop into feature-par alternatives. It is probably worth noting that JRiver and other software runs at around $30-50/year as well - I got JRiver v18 in 2012. Five years later we are on v22 so 4 upgrades worth $30-50/each. Same for Pure Music and Amarra.


That's not quite the full story. I have JRiver 19 which I purchased in 2013 and have never updated. It still runs just fine. Unless you buy the lifetime license for Roon, all you have is a subscription which stops running when you stop paying for it. Don't take this as a comment on whether I think Roon is worth it or not (still deciding,) just putting it out for context.

*** sorry, I messed up the quote above -- it's a combination of Restock & Todd. G

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Mac Mini w/ Roon / Tidal HiFi -> Metrum Amethyst -> Job INT -> JM Reynaud Bliss Silver & Magic Stands


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 5:42 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:15 am
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Location: Kingston, ON, CA
restock wrote:
ToddSecksington wrote:
2. Roon enriches the information for each album with reviews, links, cross references, and metadata from Allmusic and other sites. That content is expensive and requires to be kept up to date. Roon has a permanent subscription to Allmusic for this service. This content goes beyond what is offered with any streaming service.


This is bang-on why you pay more for Roon.

If all you want is an interface to play your tunes stored wherever, then go elsewhere. If you want an application that layers in all the extra metadata associated with your collection, then Roon is a bargain and the annual subscription model sustains the development and provisioning of meta data.

I have over 4,000 albums in my collection adding HiRes downloads continually. Roon does an amazing job organizing and presenting the collection. It's not for everyone, but if you always enjoyed the tactile experience of an LP and exploring the jacket, liner notes, etc., Roon is for you.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 6:24 am 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Logitech Media Server, with Artist/Information plugin does a surprisingly good job. I'm at 9k albums and can find what I need whenever I need it.

Tablet/phone support is excellent, and the code is all open source, like I like.

Bit-perfect transfer, a very strong and active user base, and dirt-cheap servers and points

Oh, and it's free too.

Edit: Further, LMS has a very slick jukebox feature that uses whatever album's just finished to seed a like-minded never-ending playlist. It uses Last.fm's engine for this purpose, and it can integrate local music files as well as Tidal, Spotify, Deezer streams. For the most part, Don't Stop The Music is quite good, although it occasionally makes some odd choices. Keeps life interesting, I guess.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 8:30 am 
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Location: Saskatoon, SK, CA
Thanks for the interesting comments guys. Another use case of Logitech, I will be taking a close look at it.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 9:08 am 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
ToddSecksington wrote:
Thanks for the interesting comments guys. Another use case of Logitech, I will be taking a close look at it.


It's a great ecosystem. As it stands right now, LMS is still (quietly) supported by Logitech. They have one full-time programmer doing the odd bug fix and enhancement. And being open source, there's a ton of third-party plug-ins, both available and forthcoming.

For example:

-There's several versions of android and apple apps for control purposes.
-Two separate builds of all-in-one OS/server/player SD card images for Raspberry Pi and Odroid (very easy to install)
-An Alexa skill that's in testing for voice control
-UPNP interface that will turn any UPNP device (and Sonos) into a squeezebox.
-Integration with Spotify, BBC, Deezer, Tidal (although I understand that there's a big change coming to the Spotify API that's giving the developers fantods)
-music and artist information plug-in that provides bio and album information pulled from Allmusic.com "It gives you access to almusic.com's album reviews and biographies. But it adds a whole lot to it: links to the artists' websites, blogs, news. Videos from youtube, dailymotion and others. Links to album contributors and related artists. A never-ending network of music background information."
-Custom browse setup to allow different ways to access your music

...and a metric shit-ton more features that I can't recall off the top of my head.

Head on over to http://forums.slimdevices.com/ for more details.

So yeah, laying out $600 so I can see large album art doesn't float my boat.

Jason

Edit: To be fair, the web interface is showing signs of age. But that doesn't really bother me as I interface with it 95% of the time with my phone and tablet.


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 Post subject: Re: Roon Groupbuy
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 9:22 am 
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Location: Edmonton, AB, CA
Choice is great, isn't it :lol:


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