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Roon Nucleus One: A Roon streamer “for everybody”

Finally, Roon will serve the people with the Nucleus One.

written by / 2024-04-04 - 8:00 am
Roon Nucleus One: A Roon streamer “for everybody”

Roon’s newest member of the streamer family comes just a short time after the company, which was recently acquired by Harman, announced the news of its top-of-the-line heavyweight – the Nucleus Titan. But where the Titan costs a fortune, the Nucleus One is made for a much lower budget. With a price tag of just $500, it costs less than a fifth of the price of its big brother.

Photo: Roon Labs

Nucleus One replaces the old and significantly more expensive Nucleus model. Roon promises that the new server offers upgraded hardware and performance on par with its predecessor, despite its modest price tag.

Equipment

Under the hood, we find space for a 2.5-inch SATA SSD or hard drive up to 8 TB. That should be plenty for most people, with room for 100,000 tracks or 10,000 albums. In addition, we find support for Network Attached Storage (NAS), two USB-A ports and an HDMI port dedicated to audio.

Nucleus One can handle up to six zones of multi-room audio. Although Titan and One look similar with the matte black polycarbonate finish, One is equipped with its own cooling fan and ventilation, which is hidden in the design. One will therefore be slightly noisy, unlike the fanless Titan.

The Roon Nucleus One connects to a USB DAC or you can use HDMI. Photo: Roon Labs

Alternative to Bluesound and Sonos?

On paper, it looks like the Nucleus One is the Roon product that everyone will be drooling over. For users of Roon’s playback software for PC and Mac, this is finally a tangible Roon product that takes on music streamers like Bluesound Node and Sonos Port.

Well, maybe not quite. Because while other streamers have built-in streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music, Tidal and Cobuz, Roon currently only supports Tidal and Cobuz. As well as stored music files. The Nucleus One also doesn’t have a built-in digital converter, but needs to be connected to a USB DAC or a DAC with an HDMI input.

If the little black box performs as well as it looks, it could very well be many people’s first step into Roon’s world of seamless music enjoyment without the need for a PC on the side.

Nucleus_One_side__55379-topaz copy
Photo: Roon Labs

Roon Nucleus One: Price and availability

Roon Nucleus One will be launched on 15 May, and the price is, as mentioned, $500. European pricing is not yet known.

More info: roonlabs.com

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