Good news, everyone! Roon now streams to any Chromecast device, Google Home smart speakers, Chromecast Audio and Chromecast audio receivers, as well as a ton of third party devices. Roon announced it on their blog earlier this month (07/06/18) and you can read the full announcement here.
“In addition to Chromecast streaming, today’s release includes improvements to some of the other protocols Roon supports, including Sonos playback, AirPlay 2 compatibility, LMS discovery and Devialet AIR on Expert Pro.
We’ve also integrated the latest version of the MQA Core Decoder, improved the way Roon handles partial albums from TIDAL (so you can easily find complete albums from TIDAL tracks you’ve added), and rolled out a long list of bug fixes.” – Roon
Now that you’re all caught up on this nice new feature within Roon, and a cool new hi-fi perk to owning Chromecast devices (Roon software not included with purchase of Chromecast devices), where do we go from here, what’s the best use of this and how does this benefit you? Simply put, we can now turn any hi-fi system into a Roon capable one for as little as $35.
Roon, an incredibly impressive music player designed for music lovers, is not only an extraordinary music player, but a great solution to reconnecting us with music like never before. In Roon’s own description: “Forget everything you know about music players. Music is an experience and Roon reconnects you with it.” This statement is 100 percent accurate and a message about music I’ve been trying to share with you for almost 10 years now. Roon offers the digital equivalent of all the bonus artwork and band info that came with vinyl and CDs, and it also brings all the metadata that replaces the analog info from vinyl and CDs, combining both together in a cool and interactive way. It can be used on a touchscreen computer, tablet or phone (devices without touch just lack the full experience of what Roon offers — not really in a bad way, just different). It’s a digital music magazine personalized to my tastes; it allows me to listen, look and learn more about each artist and it feels very engaging.
I wish I had this when I was growing up. Now I can tell my Google Home to cast Roon to a Chromecast device of my choosing, preferably with a video interface for the full experience. I’m able to display a visually engaging music experience with lyrics and other information. Whether that’s at home during a gathering with friends and family, or maybe sitting the kids down, it’s what music should be, a more educational experience. That is not to say that regular streaming media services are not educational; in fact, it just so happens Roon is compatible with streaming media services — well actually, just one — Tidal.
Luckily for me, this just happens to be the one and only audio streaming service I pay for. The two services make sense; they are both aimed at serious music enthusiasts, or what some may even call audiophiles. I use the term service because Tidal has a monthly fee and Roon can either be purchased outright or you can pay a yearly fee:
By now you’ve probably made the comparison of cost between the least expensive Chromecast device and the least expensive way to get Roon; yes, it’s almost $100 for this pairing (for one year), and on top of that, you still need either a Google Home or the Google assistant built into something for voice control. Voice control can also be done from your smartphone, so owning a Google Home isn’t the end all, be all for that convenience and considering we live in a world where automation and integration rule the nation, I think we’re good.
Another comparison you may have made is: Is Roon’s hefty price tag something that a Chromecast owner would even consider? You’d be surprised to know that the answer is yes: Many would and already do. Booth Google and Roon are investing in higher quality of audio and you should consider it too. From one music enthusiast to another, please try and at least experience both. Roon does offer a 14-day free trial, and it’s at least worth 14 days of your attention. You can thank me later at: johnny@rAVepubs.com