Relevant or timely? don't know, but I did just find a great solution for extreeeemely faint sound.
Open terminal, type su root, then at prompt, password.
type alsamixer - up pops control panel, use arrows to go across the columns, and up arrow to increase the various volume settings.
then type alsactl store to store the settings. all done.
(If like me, you've already messed about with settings in the System/Preferences/Sound place, then jst go thru each one and hit test button, and somewhere you'll get a piercing volume signal that wakes the household as I did.)
I haven't learnt to express instructions as elegantly as more experienced users, so in case its ambiguous, here's where I got it.