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Old 04-11-2008, 05:37 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2006
Posts: 21

Rep: Reputation: 15
Microphone quality poor and headphones not working with Alsa

I have a fresh installation of debian testing (lenny) on a Sony Viao VGN-FZ31Z.

Alsa has installed correctly but has left me with two problems.

1) The laptop speakers work fine but when i plug headphones into the laptop sound continues to come from the onboard speakers and not the headphones. Strangely enough the microphone jack does work. I have a dual boot system and the hardware works fine with my other OS.

2) The quality of the microphone is pretty bad. I can hear a lot of hiss any only just hear my voice in the background.

Any ideas how can i go about debugging and resolving these problems?

Here is my system information...

My kernel is 2.6.24-1-686
I have debian packages installed for alsa-base and alsa-utils, both in version 1.0.16-1

The audio controller (output from lspci -v) is
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) HD Audio Controller (rev 03)
        Subsystem: Sony Corporation Vaio VGN-FZ260E
        Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 22
        Memory at fc400000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16K]
        Capabilities: <access denied>
        Kernel driver in use: HDA Intel
        Kernel modules: snd-hda-intel
Alsamixer configuration (output from amixer):
Simple mixer control 'Master',0
  Capabilities: pvolume pswitch
  Playback channels: Front Left - Front Right
  Limits: Playback 0 - 127
  Front Left: Playback 108 [85%] [-14.25dB] [on]
  Front Right: Playback 108 [85%] [-14.25dB] [on]
Simple mixer control 'PCM',0
  Capabilities: pvolume
  Playback channels: Front Left - Front Right
  Limits: Playback 0 - 255
  Front Left: Playback 185 [73%] [-14.00dB]
  Front Right: Playback 185 [73%] [-14.00dB]
Simple mixer control 'Digital',0
  Capabilities: cvolume
  Capture channels: Front Left - Front Right
  Limits: Capture 0 - 120
  Front Left: Capture 71 [59%] [5.50dB]
  Front Right: Capture 71 [59%] [5.50dB]

Last edited by maxmil; 04-11-2008 at 06:05 AM.
Old 04-14-2008, 07:54 AM   #2
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2006
Posts: 21

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Problems solved.

The answer in my case was to add model=vaio to the snd_hda_intel module options. This was done in Debian by creating the file /etc/modprobe.d/snd_hda_intel with one line of text
options snd_hda_intel model=vaio
When i rebooted i then saw various other Capture devices, notably one called mic. Everything now works ok with the small niggle that the volume controls above the keyboard modify the volume of the Capture device instead of the Master device.

Hope that this will be of use someone.


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