[pulseaudio-discuss] Volume control interactions

Tanu Kaskinen tanuk at iki.fi
Sun Aug 15 21:00:37 PDT 2010

On Sun, 2010-08-15 at 21:32 +0200, Jan Braun wrote:
> Michał Sawicz schrob:
> > Google 'pulseaudio flat volume'.
> This is obviously a very desirable feature from a technical perspective.
> However, I feel it's currently rather poor UI-wise.
> What I'd want and expect is a (per-soundcard) "master volume" that's
> persistent and affects ALL streams on that device, whether they're
> currently playing the moment I adjust the slider or not. I.e. the same
> functionality I'd get from a hardware knob on my speakers. I suspect
> this is the "reference volume" mentioned in this thread
> https://tango.0pointer.de/pipermail/pulseaudio-discuss/2009-May/003948.html
> (which also explains that the UI is mixing reference volume and virtual
> volume in a confusing way.)

Yes, your "master volume" is the "reference volume". And the UI logic
has been changed after that message you linked - nowadays the UI shows
the reference volume. Terminology wise, "virtual volume" has been
renamed to "real volume" (due to the fact that the volume reflects the
hardware volume that the device actually uses). The "real volume" is not
visible to users unless they use e.g. alsamixer to check what's

> That thread seems to end with a solution:
> https://tango.0pointer.de/pipermail/pulseaudio-discuss/2009-May/004039.html
> Has there any progress/new insight been made since?

I already answered this - the UI makes more sense now. But the proposal
to store only volumes <= 0dB has not been adopted, AFAIK. In practice
nobody should write such volumes to the stream restore database, but I
think it would still make sense to actively prevent that in

Tanu Kaskinen

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