[pulseaudio-discuss] Pulse with a bluetooth headset

Alex Malinovich demonbane at the-love-shack.net
Thu Jan 24 03:12:53 PST 2008

On Thu, 2008-01-24 at 11:24 +0100, Leszek Koltunski wrote:
> Looks like PulseAudio can help me with the issues, especially 6). After 
> reading Pulse's documentation I have the impression that simply installing 
> Pulse and adding the following section to my .asoundrc
> pcm.!default
>   {
>   type pulse
>   }
> ctl.!default
>   {
>   type pulse
>   }
> will retain all my existing functionality and fix issue 6). Furthermore, 
> looks like PulseAudio even has a tray app from where I can dynamically 
> change sinks and adjust volume levels per app.
> Is that correct? Any comments?

Yes, that is correct. As long as your ALSA devices are set to pulse you
can use the pulse mixer for everything and get rid of dmix altogether.
(Pulse does a much better job of this IMO.) Note that SOME ALSA
applications won't work right with the pulse emulation, and OSS support
using padsp isn't quite perfect. For example, VirtualBox, which uses
ALSA natively, doesn't work right with pulse. And snes9x that uses OSS,
doesn't work with padsp. The only option for it is to either use dmix
along with pulse (bad idea), or use pasuspender which will completely
suspend the pulse server while the app is running.

(note: I don't know what official problem causes this, or even if it's
documented, but for me at least, Pulse and dmix do not get along at all.
My pulse server dies every 15 minutes or so when output is set to a dmix
ALSA device.)

But yes, for moving streams, pulse is ideal. You can easily move a
stream between multiple sinks or even multiple servers using some very
easy GUI apps. I have used pulse to continue listening to an album
between computers. As I switch rooms I send my pulse stream to the
remote machine and when I come into the room I'm still listening to the
same song as I was when I left the first room. Very handy stuff. :)

Alex Malinovich
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Encrypted mail preferred. You can get my public key from any of the
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