alsamixer, right place for the choice of sound card ?

Hello :wink:

In alsamixer :

In alsamixer i have this (2 channels : master and capture ) :
Card: PulseAudio
│chip: PulseAudio

F6 option gives me 3 choices :

  • default
    hda intel
    hda ati hdmi

I undesrtand so far that the hdmi sound output that might be available with my card 1 (see below from inxi ) is not useful for me if i don’t have any hdmi cable yet , so i’m willing to use regular stereo output and set this ok 1st of all.
*Is hda intel the right card to use for regular stereo ( 2.0) and alsamixer the right place to set this up ? *

When i choose the F6 option in alsamixer and pick up HDA intel i have 20 channels available, i set them up, and i leave alsamixer with escape . If i re enter in alsaplayer i have 2 channels only (how come ? ) and it tells me sound card is pulseaudio … instead of hda intel.
Which audio card is charged as default ?
how can i be sure that the soundcard i pick up in alsamixer using F6 is kept once and for all the time ?

audio cards references seen from console :

fabrice@linux-121:~> inxi -F
System:    Host: linux-121 Kernel: 3.1.10-1.9-desktop i686 (32 bit)
**Audio:  **   
Card-1: ATI RV770 HDMI Audio [Radeon HD 4850/4870] driver: snd_hda_intel Sound: ALSA ver: 1.0.24
Card-2: Intel 82801JI (ICH10 Family) HD Audio Controller driver: snd_hda_intel

in yast i have this set up :

->> 82801JI (ICH10 Family) HD Audio Controller
set up as n° 0
driver snd-hda-intel

->> Sapphire HD 4850 512MB GDDR3 PCI-E Dual Slot Fansink

not set up

*What’s the action of alsamixer F6 option vs the choice in yast ? Is yast alone enough ? *

in pavucontrol i turned off rv770 hdmi audio profile (radeon hd 4850/4870), the one named audio analogique i chose : stéréo analogique output (as default it seems it is duplex stéréo analogique).
What’s the difference between audio analogique and duplex stereo analogique ? Is there any ?
Shall i avoid pavucontrol if i’m using alsamixer ?

Thanks :wink:


I am unfamiliar with both alsamixer and PulseAudio but duplex, if selected, means that the card (sound device) is set for both capture and playback (input/output). As you use KDE KMix is perhaps easier than alsamixer, but as you also use PA I am a bit uncertain to what options you have; I often see pavucontrol being recommended when using PA. In any case, setting you primary card in YaST to the ‘HD Audio Controler’ instead of your graphical card might make things easier. I don’t use PA so I could also change sound device priority here: System Settings > Hardware > Multimedia, you might check it out to see what options are available for you there as well, though this will only affect the sound which is related to phonon.



i already set in yast as you mentioned .

i’d like to understand why setting in alsamixer are not kept .

alsa - Howto save AlsaMixer settings? - Ask Ubuntu

If for some reason alsamixer does not save the settings you could try alsactl. You can learn more about it by typing:

man alsactl

I have read one possibly way to save alsa settings is via the command:

alsactl -f /var/lib/alsa/asound.state store

but I have never tried that myself. If it were me, I would first make a backup copy of /var/lib/alsa/asound.state and only then try that command.

Also, once a configuration is saved, I do not know how to ‘unsave’ :frowning:

it does save, as the ubuntu link commands above ( msg #4) , but it saves the right sound card only in root i thus now have :

alsamixer giving me the hda intel card and settings

$ alsamixer giving me default settings (pulse audio as described in msg #1 : card and chipset : PulseAudio)

is there a way to have the hda intel sound card with m regular user session ?

cheers :wink:

I’m not sure if I understood correctly but Pulseaudio, if enabled, will take control of your sound devices, which is perhaps what is confusing you. Perhaps try and experiment with disabling PA and see if things becomes clearer?

the command syntax is:

alsactl [options] [store|restore|init] **<card # or id or device>**

so it should be possible to save the setting for either card.

For more instructions type:

man alsactl