Strange sound problem

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Strange sound problem

Postby kgsuarez on Tue Oct 27, 2009 3:01 am

Hi everyone.

I've been experiencing a very strange problem with the sound on my laptop. I could be watching a video, playing a sound file, or anything and the sound will get "stuck" and start repeating a short bit of itself over and over again. It sounds a lot like playing a CD that's been scratched badly.

I have no idea why this is happening, and definitely no idea of what I could do to fix it. My sound works perfectly half of the time, but then it breaks the other half of the time. It's very frustrating because I never know when it's going to happen. I've tried looking for answers myself, but I have yet to find any solution.

I will try to give a little more info on my computer. It is a Toshiba Satellite A105-S1013 Laptop.

aplay -l gives the following:
Code: Select all
**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: SB [HDA ATI SB], device 0: ALC861 Analog [ALC861 Analog]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: SB [HDA ATI SB], device 6: Si3054 Modem [Si3054 Modem]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0


lspci gives:
Code: Select all
00:14.2 Audio device: ATI Technologies Inc IXP SB4x0 High Definition Audio Controller (rev 01)


So, does anyone have any ideas? I would really appreciate any help here.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby kgsuarez on Wed Oct 28, 2009 3:40 pm

Well, thank you for replying.

I do appreciate any help whatsoever in this matter, though I must ask what exactly those reports mean. It appears to me that they are all about sound not working at all. My sound works, usually, but about half the time quits and starts looping the same bit over and over. Maybe I didn't look well enough, but I could not find any reference to such an error in those reports.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby DrHu on Wed Oct 28, 2009 4:07 pm

Its a sound issue, I wouldn't be able to provide an exact match as typed
  • My sound works 25% of the time
  • My sound works 50% of the time
  • My sound works 0% of the time
    --that is no sound at all
  • My sound works only intermittently
    --it cuts on and off
Q. What sound, where (speakers/headphones)
Q. Only with some applications or as a general OS problem, affects all or most applications
--etc etc..

Any sound issue, whatever the state of that sound issues has to be checked for sound issues
--that means looking at the settings for alsa and so on..
Last edited by DrHu on Wed Oct 28, 2009 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby MaddogF16 on Wed Oct 28, 2009 4:09 pm

List from command lsmod |grep sound
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby kgsuarez on Wed Oct 28, 2009 5:52 pm

DrHu, thank you for taking the time to help me. It is greatly appreciated, as I am at a complete loss with this issue. I am really enjoying Mint, except for this slight issue regarding my sound.

I couldn't give you an accurate example in percentages, so let's just call it 50%. I don't know what difference it makes, as I rarely use headphones, but this is happening when I am using the built in speakers on the laptop. That's not to say it doesn't happen when headphones are plugged in, I have not tested that yet.

Now, as far as when it happens... it happens regardless of what I am doing. It's a general OS sound issue. It has happened while I am playing MP3s, while watching video on youtube.com, and sometimes right after I boot the system up and the X login screen appears. As you know, the X login screen plays a short sound clip once it is ready for you to type your login info.

MaddogF16, the command lsmod | grep sound gives:

Code: Select all
soundcore              15200  1 snd


Thank you all again, I really hope we can find a solution.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby MaddogF16 on Wed Oct 28, 2009 5:57 pm

Let's just try straight up lsmod and I'll search the long list as I don't quite remember what exactly to grep to get just the sound stuff, maybe snd.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby kgsuarez on Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:05 pm

Sounds good.

lsmod produces:

Code: Select all
Module                  Size  Used by
binfmt_misc            16776  1
radeon                342816  2
ppdev                  15620  0
drm                    96296  3 radeon
bridge                 56340  0
stp                    10500  1 bridge
bnep                   20224  2
video                  25360  0
output                 11008  1 video
input_polldev          11912  0
joydev                 18368  0
lp                     17156  0
parport                42220  2 ppdev,lp
arc4                    9856  2
ecb                    10752  2
pcmcia                 44748  0
snd_hda_intel         435636  3
snd_pcm_oss            46336  0
snd_mixer_oss          22656  1 snd_pcm_oss
snd_pcm                82948  2 snd_hda_intel,snd_pcm_oss
snd_seq_dummy          10756  0
snd_seq_oss            37760  0
snd_seq_midi           14336  0
snd_rawmidi            29696  1 snd_seq_midi
snd_seq_midi_event     15104  2 snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi
ath5k                 107008  0
snd_seq                56880  6 snd_seq_dummy,snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi,snd_seq_midi_event
snd_timer              29704  2 snd_pcm,snd_seq
snd_seq_device         14988  5 snd_seq_dummy,snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq
yenta_socket           32396  1
rsrc_nonstatic         19328  1 yenta_socket
psmouse                61972  0
mac80211              217208  1 ath5k
ati_agp                14988  0
pcmcia_core            43540  3 pcmcia,yenta_socket,rsrc_nonstatic
snd                    62628  15 snd_hda_intel,snd_pcm_oss,snd_mixer_oss,snd_pcm,snd_seq_oss,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq,snd_timer,snd_seq_device
pcspkr                 10496  0
serio_raw              13316  0
led_class              12036  1 ath5k
cfg80211               38032  2 ath5k,mac80211
soundcore              15200  1 snd
snd_page_alloc         16904  2 snd_hda_intel,snd_pcm
i2c_piix4              18448  0
agpgart                42696  2 drm,ati_agp
shpchp                 40212  0
8139too                32128  0
8139cp                 27776  0
mii                    13312  2 8139too,8139cp
fbcon                  46112  0
tileblit               10752  1 fbcon
font                   16384  1 fbcon
bitblit                13824  1 fbcon
softcursor              9984  1 bitblit
Kristian G. Suarez
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby MaddogF16 on Wed Oct 28, 2009 9:27 pm

I wonder if it is caused by the driver being split between to things snd/modem, wonder if there's a way to kill the modem half of things. This is kinda out of my realm so maybe someone with more experience in similar issues can get something out of the info so far.
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Re: Strange sound problem

Postby kgsuarez on Wed Oct 28, 2009 11:07 pm

Okay, I have an idea.

What commands would I enter to unload all the sound related kernel modules and then promptly reload them?

I am assuming that this would "unstuck" the stuttering sound for at least some time. Because as it is, whenever my sound gets stuck the only way for me to fix it is to reboot. Perhaps I could write some kind of a script to run the said commands automatically. I could place a shortcut to the script on my desktop. That way, when my sound freaks out all I have to do is double click an icon on my desktop to fix it. Not exactly a pretty fix, but if nobody else has any ideas it will just have to do.

Let me know if any of you would know how to go about doing this, as I haven't the slightest clue of where to begin.
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