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Old 09-24-2004, 11:57 PM   #1
Registered: Nov 2003
Posts: 187

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Problems with sound card, mixer, xmms

Please bear with me, everyone. This problem is not easy to explain but it's very annoying.

Before I continue, I have a Creative Audio PCI card, but its the "surround sound" model. It has two output jacks, not just one. I believe its 4.1 if I am not mistaken.

I hate to use Windows as an example but its the only way of explaining this that makes sense. The surround sound on my four speakers sounds great on Windows, but not as great in Linux. Windows accurately gives each speaker and equal amount of sound so that it surrounds you.

With Linux I am going through hell with it, kmix and xmms. One or more of the following occurs:
* The sound sounds like its more on the left or on the right than it should
* Sometimes sound that should be on the left speaker would be on the right.
* Sometimes vocals will be only on the right side.
* Sometimes each speaker has the exact same output (for surround the front and the back have different parts of the sound)
* Sometimes even the volume control on XMMS controls the left/right balance.

Different results occur with each different setting of the Kmix mixers. A few of them control the left right balance. For example, sometimes PCM will adjust the sound left and the sound right. Sometimes it will turn up the center volume, and if its more than halfway down it will stop it altogether. It's never the same.

Most of the time when I am listening to it my left ear feels like its "straining" to here the sound and my right ear gets too much.

Hard to explain but really wierd.

Here are the main questions:
1. Is there a better driver? Perhaps the current driver is only doing two channel sound.
2. What exactly does each mixer do?
3. How can I get the sound "even" amoung each speaker
4. Basically, whats happening?

I am not a newbie but I am a newbie to listening to music on it since until now Windows did that for me. (I am "phasing out" my dependency on Windows).

Old 09-25-2004, 04:00 AM   #2
Gentoo Developer
Registered: Feb 2004
Location: Fort Lauderdale FL.
Distribution: Gentoo
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I have the same card "I think'and the only driver for it is the snd-ens1371(alsa)and xxx-1371(oss).I never could get the ft.bk.speakers to work right .I only listen to music and didn't need the surround sound so I hooked the front speakers together with the back and only use one output.


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