Sunday, July 11, 2010

Work around for a sound stepping issue in Ubuntu 10.04

My computers sound was terrible. It would step from 0, 6, 12, 18 % and at 18% it was at full volume. Bleeding ear drums please, looking around launchpad I found a fix in a bug report.

This is the output of  aplay -l output

**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: SB [HDA ATI SB], device 0: VT1708S Analog [VT1708S Analog]
  Subdevices: 2/2
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  Subdevice #1: subdevice #1
card 0: SB [HDA ATI SB], device 1: VT1708S Digital [VT1708S Digital]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0

And here is the fix as I applied it:

1) I had to create ~/.pulse/
so I did
cp /etc/pulse/ ~/.pulse

2) gedit ~/.pulse/
uncomment the line#load-module module-alsa-sink
and modify it to be:
load-module module-alsa-sink control=PCM

3) stop any apps playing sound

4) killall pulseaudio

5) run alsamixer at a terminal and adjust the Master and LFE levels.

6) Move gnome sound volume slider: you'll see that now Master and LFE are not touched and that the slider only applies to PCM channel.

The instructions above follow the fix in the bug report, except I found I did not need to edit this line in
load-module module-udev-detect
    and modify it to be
load-module module-udev-detect ignore_dB=1
If you read this bug report it explains further, why I did not need to edit the line. I saw that there are more detailed fixes but what I did above was the quick and dirty. Which perfectly fit my needs of slow steady sound adjustment.