Pulseaudio Basics for openSUSE with pavucontrol
by, 07-Jan-2012 at 11:31 (9791 Views)
This is a basic tutorial on pulseaudio tuning using pavucontrol (pulse audio volume control application).
Pulseaudio basics appear to stump many users. Even long-in-the-tooth GNU/Linux users struggle with pulse, as they find the transition from the known alsamixer/kmix with text .asoundrc files to the very simplistic pulse audio a new experience that they are not prepared to adjust to. In the early days of pulseaudio, it was buggy, which complicated its acceptance.
I deferred moving to pulse for a long time, but when I did, I realized it was powerful and yet simple to use, as long as one opened the correct gui / applications. And while it is still not bug free today, it is significantly improved and provides capabilities that were previously only available by using jack, or by complex .asoundrc file codeings where one needed to speak binary to understand what was happening.
This blog entry is NOT intended to solve pulseaudio problems for those who have scratchy sound, or sound that is stuttering, or playback/recording is too fast. For those users I recommend you surf the web and find a troubleshooting guide, such as Troubleshooting pulse audio problems
The application 'pavucontrol' (pulse audio volume control) is installed by default in Gnome, but it needs to be separately installed in KDE, from the official openSUSE OSS repository (which is aleady automatically setup on every openSUSE install). I am using openSUSE-11.4 for this blog entry, but openSUSE-12.1 is pretty much identical in these basics.
This blog entry will consist of a series of posts using my 11 year old Sandbox PC (which has integrated mother board sound and also a second sound device which is an ancient sound blaster compatible PCI card).
May I also point out an excellent blog entry of jdmcdaniel3 on configuring one's audio hardware with pulse audio. It complements this blog post of mine nicely and jdmcdaniel3's blog entry is a very valuable, very quick and recommended read.
Sandbox PC - playback
(1) pavucontrol configuration tab on my Sandbox PC
(2) pavucontrol output devices tab on my Sandbox PC
(3) pavucontrol playback tab on my Sandbox PC
(4) PulseAudio equalizer on my Sandbox PC
(5) pavucontrol input devices tab on my Sandbox PC
and a series of posts using my 2 year old Primary PC (which has integrated motherboard sound, and a webcam with an integrated microphone)
Primary PC -recording
(1) pavucontrol configuration tab on my Primary PC
(2) pavucontrol input devices tab on my Primary PC
(3) pavucontrol recording tab to use the webcam microphone with skype
Recording one's desktop with ffmpeg and pavucontrol
(1) record computer audio and audio from mic while capturing desktop with ffmpeg - Note this is on a different blog entry - click on the link to go there.
.... continued ...