Roon vs Lightning DS


Conditions weren’t the best, but I got the setup going. I have the LDS app on the iPad and the Roon Remote on my Android. I can cue the same track in both. When I hit play on the one not playing, it takes over instantly, so it’s a pretty good A/B. I’ll trust earlier statement here that Roon, with all DSP and volume leveling off, level matches LDS.

Very preliminary perception is no difference. But I need to get a better listening session in.


What firmware version did you use ?


I might recall wrong off the top of my head, but it is the latest non-beta. This is on a VEGA G2.


I recently demo’d an Aries G2 with my system (thanks Xuanqian) to compare LDS streaming vs Roon Ready streaming…and came to the conclusion that there was a bit of quality difference when running LDS vs RR.

LDS sounded better with the Aries G2 streaming to my Vega/Leo combo, but when compared to Roon Ready direct to the Vega G2 without Aries G2, zero difference. This may be due to the different Roon Ready code running on the Aries vs Vega…but can’t be sure.

I determined that since I prefer Roon over LDS for a few reasons, the Vega/Leo combo was all I needed for Roon…and gained zero if not lost some quality when using the Aries G2 with Roon.

I returned the Aries G2, and am a very happy camper. If I did not use Roon, and purely LDS, the Aries G2 would have stayed.


So I may be on a wild goose chase. Does the ARIES have some kind of buffer that the VEGA lacks? That would account for the difference.

The experiment was just for fun for me. There would have to be an unmistakable improvement with LDS for me to abandon Roon. Roon offers so much in the user experience, a tiny ding in SQ would be totally worth it.


So it sounds like basically sound quality is a wash but Roon is more feature rich. That sounds right and I am happy enough with the features of LDS especially for free.


Yep…the Aries has 1GB of cache, while the Vega has 32MB. Pretty massive difference.

Roon is awesome…and like I said…I heard really no improvement using LDS with Aries above my Vega/Leo combo using Roon.


Yup. My experiment’s over. Fun while it lasted! :nerd_face:


I think 6.0 firmware on ARIES G2 will bring the sound quality gap between Lightning DS and Roon to minimum due to the integration of Roon code into our own playback engine. VEGA G2 has this integration for a long time since the beginning and that’s why we have the confidence ARIES G2 will benefit from it as well.


What about on Aries Femto? Or G1?


Thank you
Do you think this firmware will be in Aries Femto in the future?


@memota The 6.0 firmware is available in Beta for the G1 too.


From what was discussed here: Room Correction

and here: Aries Beta 6.0.beta1

it should be coming out for Aries Femto too in next Beta version. Not sure if that decision was changed since then though


6.0 is coming to all devices but only for beta of old ARIES Femto and ARIES LE. The 5.X (currently 5.6, will be 5.6, 5.8 and etc) will be the last major final official release version of those two products.


That’s sad compared to what was said in:

The ARIES MINI will not have enhanced audiophile features, such as room correction, it will only come to ARIES, ARIES LE, ALTAIR, POLARIS and ARIES G1/G2.

It was not mentioned that it will stay in beta for Aries. Firmware 5.6 is an example how random the releases for devices are (like jump from 4x final completely to 5.6 on Aries).

I have Vega and Aries, and loved the way Auralic changed the market when it first appeared, but unfortunately I am definitely not going on G series train. I would be afraid to buy that expensive gear and not be sure if the same would happen as for Aries series.

Releases are so random and insecure that I just lost all my will to wait anymore.

Wish you guys good luck with products.

Signing off,



I just got a Aries LE and its fantastic cant find much to complain about at all. I was debating on spending on a lifetime ROON but was still not sure if it will be useful in the event Tidal fails as a company or if ROON goes away. The only feature I am missing is the way ROON can play a song and is able to keep playing another similar track from my library. Have no clue if this is possible to add in the future but im hoping. very good work Auralic!


Because I have a rather large library - with multiple versions of the same record - I find ROON absolutely invaluable. It’s a truly well designed library manager. Sure makes my life much easier and streaming to the Vega G2 with ROON is as easy as it gets.



the advantage of Roon is that it offers a software DSP engine, which can eventually correct the curve/eq

LDS do not allows it on vega g2…


But Lightning DS and its server does allow DSP in the Aries G1/G2, which basically is Auralics Streamers, while the Vega is a DAC with streaming functionality. So if you’re hell bent on DSPing (i cannot fathom why, but…) you can spend you dimes on an Auralic streamer rather than Roon if you’d like.
I dont experience differences in the same way as i did with firmware 5.4. I still feel Lightning DS playback gives a subly more dynamic and clear playback on my Aries G1 though.


for my part, I do not need a dsp either, but I understand quite those who have a horrible room (too reverberante for example) and wishes to have a dsp.

it turns out that if you only listen in streaming and only have the VEGA, the only way for you to change the EQ, curve or add a fir is to go through Roon. Or, yes, buy an aries for example. but it’s not the same price as a roon subscription …