[pulseaudio-discuss] Volume control with hda_intel

Steve Greenland steveg at moregruel.net
Thu Mar 27 14:36:35 PDT 2008

On 27-Mar-08, 14:19 (CDT), Lennart Poettering <lennart at poettering.net> wrote: 
> No, this is not configurable. If the PCM slider does not work properly
> on your sound card, then please report that to ALSA upstream. ALSA
> (inofficially) gives the guarantee that "Master" always works for PCM
> and "PCM" should be used as fallback. If this doesn't work on your
> setup than this is a bug in ALSA.

After browsing the ALSA bug system, and finding that there is apparently
lots of weirdness with the snd-hda-intel driver (or with the hardware
itself), and lots of updates, I built and installed the 1.0.16 version
of ALSA (not sure what's in the 2.6.24 kernel).

And JOY! The updated driver(s) create a MASTER mixer control, and it
works in alsamixer. Curiously, the PCM control (which didn't do anything
noticeable in the old driver) is gone, at least according to alsamixer.

And now the weird bit: pavucontrol lists the output device as

   ALSA PCM on hw:0 (ALC662 Analog) via DMA

and moving the slider does affect the volume, but it doesn't show in
the alsamixer MASTER control, or on any other control. OTOH, the Input
Device sliders *do* modulate the "CAPTURE" control.

>From which I conclude:

1. Intel sound hardware is flaky

2. Alsa continues to be flaky, just like it has been for years. But
I'm not sure it's their fault; it looks like every implentation of
snd-hda-intel is broken in different ways.

Steve Greenland
    The irony is that Bill Gates claims to be making a stable operating
    system and Linus Torvalds claims to be trying to take over the
    world.       -- seen on the net

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