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Old 04-21-2012, 06:13 PM
Mark Knecht
 
Default Mic works, but doesn't work...

Hi,
Ah, for a peaceful Saturday, but I guess not this one... I'm just
starting to investigate this but maybe someone's worked on this sort
of thing recently?

The bottom line is that my mic for conferencing is working, in the
sense that with headphones on I can raise the either the 'Front Mic'
or 'Front Mic Boost' sliders in the KDE mixer and I hear myself
speaking. However none of the applications I use the mic with - either
Skype or VirtualBox VMs - are receiving any audio. My main method of
testing the mic is the little app in Skype where you make a test call
and then it plays it back for you. I do love that sweet sounding
English girl who talks to me but I don't hear what I recorded.

I haven't used the mic in 2 weeks so I only know it was working 2
Saturday's ago. (We didn't have a conference call last Saturday
morning.) The kernel was updated from 3.2.1 to 3.2.12 on April 15th,
so that's changed since the mix worked. It seems that
/var/lib/alsa/asound.state changed as recently as yesterday. (April
20th)

The machine is Gentoo (mostly) stable, and has been since it was
built 2 years ago, and is updated nearly every day so anything that
changed in the last 2 weeks is a possible candidate for root cause.

All other aspect of Alsa are basically working. Everything can play
audio. KDE system sounds work. VMs can stream NetFlix, etc. The only
thing not working at the app level is the mic.

Any ideas where to look?

I've not rebooted yet on the off chance this is a one-off hardware
problem. I have restarted Alsa but it didn't fix anything. If the
reboot doesn't work I'll try dropping back to the previous kernel.

In the old days you would sometimes delete asound.state and let
Alsa recreate it when you had problems with a new version of Alsa.
Anyone know if that's still recommended?

Thanks in advance,
Mark
 
Old 04-21-2012, 06:24 PM
Nikos Chantziaras
 
Default Mic works, but doesn't work...

On 21/04/12 21:13, Mark Knecht wrote:

Hi,
Ah, for a peaceful Saturday, but I guess not this one... I'm just
starting to investigate this but maybe someone's worked on this sort
of thing recently?


Make sure the mic is selected as the "capture" source:

* Run alsamixer in a terminal.
* Press F6 and select your sound card.
* Press F4 to get to the capture settings.
* From the available inputs, select "Mic" (left/right arrow keys) and
press space to select it as the capture source. Raise the capture volume
to maximum (up arrow key.)

* Esc.

All of this can also be done in KMix if you're on KDE.
 
Old 04-21-2012, 07:00 PM
Mark Knecht
 
Default Mic works, but doesn't work...

On Sat, Apr 21, 2012 at 11:24 AM, Nikos Chantziaras <realnc@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 21/04/12 21:13, Mark Knecht wrote:
>>
>> Hi,
>> * *Ah, for a peaceful Saturday, but I guess not this one... *I'm just
>> starting to investigate this but maybe someone's worked on this sort
>> of thing recently?
>
>
> Make sure the mic is selected as the "capture" source:
>
> * Run alsamixer in a terminal.
> * Press F6 and select your sound card.
> * Press F4 to get to the capture settings.
> * From the available inputs, select "Mic" (left/right arrow keys) and press
> space to select it as the capture source. Raise the capture volume to
> maximum (up arrow key.)
> * Esc.
>
> All of this can also be done in KMix if you're on KDE.
>
>

Hi Nikos,
Right, all done both in KMix as well as alsamixer. No change yet.
Capture was already selected and volume up. I tried with Capture1 and
Capture2. No change.

I tried dropping back to my earlier 3.2.1-gentoo-r2 kernel but that
also didn't work. However for some reason it also had a problem with
the nvidia driver and to get X I had to do a modules-rebuild -X
rebuild so I'm no longer sure what state that's in WRT also. Anyway,
3.2.1 boots, KDE logs in but no microphone audio. That kernel was
built on 3/17 so I'm 200% certain the mix worked on that kernel 2
weeks ago.

What's strange about this (to me) is that when I'm in the Skype
Test Call app (darn I like that English girl in that. Where is she
from?) :-) I can tap on the mic and hear the thumps in my headphones
so I know the mix works. However I'm not sure if possibly the sound
card isn't mixing that directly into the audio output and maybe Alsa
is never hearing the mic.

Stumped. Going to try the old delete asound.state thing next...

Cheers,
Mark
 
Old 04-21-2012, 07:45 PM
Mark Knecht
 
Default Mic works, but doesn't work...

On Sat, Apr 21, 2012 at 12:00 PM, Mark Knecht <markknecht@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sat, Apr 21, 2012 at 11:24 AM, Nikos Chantziaras <realnc@gmail.com> wrote:
>> On 21/04/12 21:13, Mark Knecht wrote:
>>>
>>> Hi,
>>> * *Ah, for a peaceful Saturday, but I guess not this one... *I'm just
>>> starting to investigate this but maybe someone's worked on this sort
>>> of thing recently?
>>
>>
>> Make sure the mic is selected as the "capture" source:
>>
>> * Run alsamixer in a terminal.
>> * Press F6 and select your sound card.
>> * Press F4 to get to the capture settings.
>> * From the available inputs, select "Mic" (left/right arrow keys) and press
>> space to select it as the capture source. Raise the capture volume to
>> maximum (up arrow key.)
>> * Esc.
>>
>> All of this can also be done in KMix if you're on KDE.
>>
>>
>
> Hi Nikos,
> * Right, all done both in KMix as well as alsamixer. No change yet.
> Capture was already selected and volume up. I tried with Capture1 and
> Capture2. No change.
>
> * I tried dropping back to my earlier 3.2.1-gentoo-r2 kernel but that
> also didn't work. However for some reason it also had a problem with
> the nvidia driver and to get X I had to do a modules-rebuild -X
> rebuild so I'm no longer sure what state that's in WRT also. Anyway,
> 3.2.1 boots, KDE logs in but no microphone audio. That kernel was
> built on 3/17 so I'm 200% certain the mix worked on that kernel 2
> weeks ago.
>
> * What's strange about this (to me) is that when I'm in the Skype
> Test Call app (darn I like that English girl in that. Where is she
> from?) :-) I can tap on the mic and hear the thumps in my headphones
> so I know the mix works. However I'm not sure if possibly the sound
> card isn't mixing that directly into the audio output and maybe Alsa
> is never hearing the mic.
>
> * Stumped. Going to try the old delete asound.state thing next...
>
> Cheers,
> Mark

A little more info:

1) If I run a YouTube video while I'm doing this then:
a) PCM controls YouTube volume
b) Master does nothing

2) While YouTube is running, if I turn off PCM so I have no volume,
then I can tap on the mic and hear it. To me this means the mic audio
I'm hearing isn't in Alsa at all but rather it's some sort of hardware
mixer in the sound chip.

3) Muting the Front mic input in Alsa stops the mic audio I am hearing.

4) Modifying Front Mic Boost works as expected: 4 steps of major mic
gain. 0 is totally off. (Like mute on Front mic)

5) In my Capture settings I have front & back mic volume and boost as
well as a 'Digital' input and places to set the Input sources which
are set to Front Mic, Rear Mic & Mix. Changes here haven't effected
anything so far. All 4 sliders are full up. (Capture, Capture1,
Capture2 & Digital)
 
Old 04-21-2012, 07:56 PM
Mick
 
Default Mic works, but doesn't work...

On Saturday 21 Apr 2012 20:00:00 Mark Knecht wrote:
> On Sat, Apr 21, 2012 at 11:24 AM, Nikos Chantziaras <realnc@gmail.com>
wrote:
> > On 21/04/12 21:13, Mark Knecht wrote:
> >> Hi,
> >> Ah, for a peaceful Saturday, but I guess not this one... I'm just
> >> starting to investigate this but maybe someone's worked on this sort
> >> of thing recently?
> >
> > Make sure the mic is selected as the "capture" source:
> >
> > * Run alsamixer in a terminal.
> > * Press F6 and select your sound card.
> > * Press F4 to get to the capture settings.
> > * From the available inputs, select "Mic" (left/right arrow keys) and
> > press space to select it as the capture source. Raise the capture volume
> > to maximum (up arrow key.)
> > * Esc.
> >
> > All of this can also be done in KMix if you're on KDE.
>
> Hi Nikos,
> Right, all done both in KMix as well as alsamixer. No change yet.
> Capture was already selected and volume up. I tried with Capture1 and
> Capture2. No change.
>
> I tried dropping back to my earlier 3.2.1-gentoo-r2 kernel but that
> also didn't work. However for some reason it also had a problem with
> the nvidia driver and to get X I had to do a modules-rebuild -X
> rebuild so I'm no longer sure what state that's in WRT also. Anyway,
> 3.2.1 boots, KDE logs in but no microphone audio. That kernel was
> built on 3/17 so I'm 200% certain the mix worked on that kernel 2
> weeks ago.
>
> What's strange about this (to me) is that when I'm in the Skype
> Test Call app (darn I like that English girl in that. Where is she
> from?) :-) I can tap on the mic and hear the thumps in my headphones
> so I know the mix works. However I'm not sure if possibly the sound
> card isn't mixing that directly into the audio output and maybe Alsa
> is never hearing the mic.
>
> Stumped. Going to try the old delete asound.state thing next...
>
> Cheers,
> Mark

I seem to recall activating/unmuting 'digital' capture in alsamix for my plug
in mic to work.
--
Regards,
Mick
 

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