my sound card is shown in kinfo centre:
Config Options: 0
Type 10: ALSA emulation
C-Media Oxygen HD audo (rev2) at 0xa000, irq 20
MPU-401 UART at 0x330, irq 10
0: analog (duplex)
Synth Devices: NOT ENABLED IN CONFIG
1: MPU-401 UART MIDI
7: system timer
The above shows, I think, that cmi8788 isn't being used for mixer. When I right click on the audio icon in kicker, and select mixer, it shows Master is selected and at bottom, has the correct mixer as C-Media CMI8788 where the slider bar for "left/right balancing" is.
So, my problem is with ALSA sound output in KDE CE Elyssa. I only found this out this week as I normally do not have my speakers plugged in as they emit an annoying hissing sound due to the poor design of my Altec Lansing speakers. Anyway, a week ago I noticed I had no sound in KDE Mint, so I did a reinstall to see when it occurred. I get system sound with the live CD and I get system sound after the initial reboot upon installation, but after this, I lose system sound upon restart or reboot. I noticed in Adept there were 84 updates, and some of those were kernel updates, module updates, header updates, so I let it get those, but Adept would crash when my dial-up ISP cut me off after 4 hours, and wouldn't remember what I had downloaded and would start from the beginning again. I got annoyed at this (old problem with Adept) and started synaptic as root and let it grab 256 updates, and those included the above mentioned, plus arts. I thought this would help, but I still do not get system sound from Auto Detect, or ALSA. I get system sound if I switch to OSS or threaded open sound of System Sound.
Thanks for looking over the problem. I have onboard audio disabled in BIOS. I had no problems with sound using Mint Gnome Elyssa with KDE apps stacked on top of it.