Frequently Asked Questions: Roon Nucleus

Roon Nucleus and Nucleus Plus music streaming server imageRoon Nucleus and Nucleus Plus music streaming server image

What Is Roon Nucleus?

In 2018, Roon Labs added hardware to their already powerful audiophile beloved Roon music management software. The Roon Nucleus and Nucleus Plus became indispensable music network hardware, managing your music collection from many networked sources, playing too many output devices, spreading music around your home and recovering the fun, education, and discovery of listening to your favorite music, bands, recordings, and musicians. The ability to easily set the tone for different listeners and rooms is an audiophile’s dream. Roon’s ability to connect musicians, performances, and historical information from the web so the digital music doesn’t lose its soul is a big bonus.

Roon Nucleus Links

Find Roon's excellent and extensive knowledge base FAQs at

What does Roon Music Management Software Do?

Roon’s music engagement, archive, and search technology is an audiophile favorite. The problem was clear - digital music robbed listeners. Albums, those slightly more than twelve-inch square cardboard sleeves holding long-playing (LP) vinyl records were part of the fun. Roon’s music archive and engagement software create a digital version of holding Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, the Beatles Sgt. Pepper, or Joshua Tree by U2. Roon network and search features go static cardboard several times better by including current tour dates, historical context, and hyperlinks to musical influences and influence.

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How Does Roon's Music Management Work?

Think of the Roon’s software as your music’s master controller capable of managing your music across many sources including external drives (physical or networked), Network Architecture Storage (NAS), Digital Audio Players (DAPs), and music streaming services such as Tidal and iTunes. Roon’s Core sends your music to “output devices” on your network including computers, speakers, Sonos, digital to analog converters (DACs) and other "Roon Ready" devices (See Roon Ready).

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Roon’s software has two components - Core and Controllers. The Roon Core is the network’s brains. Since Roon’s Core (brain) is networked plugging into a router control apps on smartphones, pads, or computers can access the Roon Core.

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Roon Ready DACs, DAPs & Amps

Roon's extensive partner network means your favorite digital to analog converter (DAC) and digital players (DAPs) are ready for the Roon's high definition music streaming. Here is a snapshot of an ever-evolving list of "Roon ready" manufacturers. 

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Roon and Tidal

It's easy to add Tidal to Roon. Click on the TIDAL link and you'll be prompted for your Tidal login. 

Roon and Sonos

Yes, Roon's music management software and the Roon Nucleus will recognize and play music to a Sonos wireless system. We recommend purchasing a Sonos Boost to create a stronger Sonos network within your network. Before adding the Sonos Boost there was a lot of work to reset and recalibrate speakers after a Sonos upgrade. Since Sonos upgrades frequently and Boost is relatively inexpensive ($99) we recommend giving your Roon plus Sonos music streaming network a Boost. 

You can connect non-Airplay speakers using a Sonos Connect or Sonos Connect:amp. Adding a Sonos Connect:amp may be the easiest way to add a turntable into your wireless music streaming network too. We are experimenting and will let you know how adding a turntable to our network works or doesn't. 

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Turntables and Roon

Since vinyl records are analog Roon can't stream records.  There is a new generation of WiFi enabled turntables capable of playing music across a Roon network. We think anything on the network can and will be recognized as a potential source. We are in the process of experimenting with a wireless turntable now and will report progress. 

Roon Remote

Roon has the ability to reach across the web to connect your musical library, streaming, and output. Roon can be accessed remotely here's how:

  • Install Roon Software - define your "Core" on a Mac or PC computer or laptop. 
  • Set Remote - select core and define the related computer as a remote. 
  • Select Core - select the controlling Roon core. 
  • Accept Remote - Turn on the "Accept Remote" feature. 


The next step - select core - is confusing since we just defined Core when we set up our hardware as a remote. Its possible to have more than one Core and that's too confusing to discuss fully here. The second selection of Core may well be the same "Core" you selected earlier, but this selection is related to the Core you want to ACCESS via the remote. 

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Finally, you need to be sure to accept remote connections. This is the step many overlook. 

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Roon Licensing - Many Cores One Authorization

While it is true you can create many Roon "Cores" the default license provides for a single device license. Creating Roon Cores on different devices won't work without buying additional licenses. A basic Roon license authorizes Core on a single device. 

You can run Roon Core on multiple devices if you do one of two things:

  • Deauthorize one Core in favor of another. 
  • Buy additional Roon licenses. 

Here is how Roon describes the need for more than one license and how to transfer an existing license. 

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Find more on the Roon Knowledge Base.

Roon No Backups Message

Our initial Roon installation on an iMac and Mac Laptop was plagued by a persistent Error message. 

Even after we did a backup the popup persisted. Not a bad idea to schedule backups first thing. Schedule a backup of your Roon's settings by clicking on the Settings menu

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Click on BACKUPS. 

Making The Backups Message Disappear

We suggest backing up your Roon NOW and creating s regular schedule. If you've backed up AND the error message persists log out of Roon and reboot your computer. Even after we did two immediate backups AND put in a schedule the error message persisted. Our search of the Roon knowledge base, normally a great resource, didn't explain the persistence. After backing up NOW and creating a schedule we applied the old rule -when in doubt reboot. The persistent, "You haven't backed up" note went away after logging out and rebooting. We had this problem on our iMac connected to Roon Nucleus and Mac desktop. 

What about you? Have you been plagued by the persistent no backup error message too? Email Drew (at) Moon-Audio with Roon Error Message in the subject so we can try to have techs at Roon recognize and fix the issue. 

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