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mensch 09-27-2008 09:11 AM

Problem with maximum audio volume + volume control threshold
I hope the following hasn't been asked many times before (or is blatantly obvious), I've searched the forums and couldn't find a thread which applies to my problem.

Anyway, I've got problems with volume control. To get a fairly decent volume (it's still too low for my tastes) I have to yank the slider volume to its maximum - everything is in the red regions of the alsamixer interface.

When I use the volume slider of Kmix or alsamixer from the command line to assert some more detailed control over the volume there are basically three steps: normal volume, very low volume and after approximately 10% of the slider: no volume. So the remaining 90% of the slider is dedicated to complete silence. This might be related, but I'm not sure the solution is what I need, because if I set the sliders of my mixer to 80% there's only complete silence.

This behaviour is also consistent with any external audio device (headphones, an amplifier and external speakers, or just external speakers) and consistent in both KDE 4 and GNOME - the latter I've used in the past. I'm running Debian Lenny (kernel version 2.6.26-1-686, but I had this problem with older kernel versions as well) on a MacBook Pro 15" (second gen).

I've run the module assistant to rebuild alsa. snd_hda_intel is present when running lsmod | grep intel and alsaconf correctly picks up the sound card as "Intel Corporation 82801G (ICH7 Family) High Definition Audio Controller". Strangely enough lspci | grep audio is empty for some reason.

Does anybody know what could be wrong here?

mensch 10-02-2008 05:57 PM

Nobody has experienced this problem, or might know what it's related to?

I noticed some new glitches today when listening music with headphones plugged in, a constant crackling noise which is also present when playing over my speakers.

I think it might be related to the fact that all volume sliders are on full whack to get decent audio, but somehow distort it due to that high level.

me_and_linux 10-04-2008 05:48 PM

I have similar problems with 82801H (ICH8 Family) HD Audio Controller on my R61i laptop.
But when I put the volume on the lowest level the noise is still very loud. Also, it seems that bass is always very high so it makes strange voice...

nowshining 10-04-2008 09:15 PM

is there a volume knob on ur speakers, stereo, etc.. try turning that up...alas the lower the bitrate of a mp3, etc.. the lower the volume of the musical sound, etc.. thus one musth turn up the volume to a higher level on the lower bitrate tracks and way down on the higher bitrate tracks..

mensch 10-05-2008 05:38 AM

I think I've found a fix for the distorted sound part of my problem, I used this method from the Ubuntu Help:

Solution for Apple Macs

In case of slightly distorted, weird, crackled sound on Apple Macs it have been reported by several users, that unload snd_hda_intel module at boot time and then reload it, can help to get rid of crackled sound. For do this, edit /etc/rc.local by typing in Terminal


sudo gedit /etc/rc.local
And add two following lines to the end of file before "exit 0":


rmmod snd_hda_intel
modprobe snd_hda_intel

I've still got the other problem. There is a volume knob on both my speakers and headphones and I can turn them to the highest level if I want to, but if I decrease the master volume to a certain level (say three red blocks in alsamixer) all sound is muted.

It seems to me volume control is making steps which are too large when decreasing or increasing the volume.

me_and_linux 10-10-2008 03:43 AM

I don't know if this will help you but I solved my problem by downloading mplayer which controls the volume on the low level I guess. So once I started it, I put the volume down by pressing '9' key. It was all the way up when I first started it!

Hope it helps...good luck!

mensch 10-10-2008 11:48 AM

Didn't work for me unfortunately. MPlayer's sound is completely muted (as in the volume slider is turned to zero) on my machine. Increasing or decreasing the volume in MPlayer doesn't affect the system volume.

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