Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA [PARTLY SOLVED]

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loggerjack
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Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA [PARTLY SOLVED]

Post by loggerjack » Sun Dec 04, 2016 8:17 am

I'm running this laptop (HP X031NA Energy Star) on dual boot, win 10 and mint 18 (Cinnamon 64-bit, version 3.0.6, kernel 4.4.0-21-generic). The sound volume on Mint is much less than on Windows. In Sound Settings, I can move the output volume slider to 153% without any distortion. The maximum volume is then about the same as when I'm in Windows, and I'd be happy if I could get it to stay at this setting. However if I adjust the volume even slightly, it immediately loses the extra 53%. Effectively this means I have to control the volume with the sound settings dialogue which is a bit clumsy.

When I Google this issue, I find the solution often involves configuring alsamixer, but when I access alsamixer through the terminal, I can't change any of the settings. It opens in playback view and shows me three channels (there are no sliders like I've seen mentioned elsewhere). I've copied the text from the terminal and paste it here:

Card: HDA Intel HDMI F1: Help │
│ Chip: Intel Broadwell HDMI F2: System information │
│ View: F3:[Playback] F4: Capture F5: All F6: Select sound card │
│ Item: S/PDIF Esc: Exit │
│ │
│ │
│ │
│ │
│ │
│ │
│ │
│ ┌──┐ ┌──┐ ┌──┐ │
│ │OO│ │OO│ │OO│ │
│ └──┘ └──┘ └──┘ │
│ < S/PDIF >S/PDIF 1 S/PDIF 2 │
│ │

The only keys that seem to work are the left and right arrow keys. I can use them to select any of the three channels, but using the up/down arrows doesn't change the values (neither do + and -). None of the function keys do anything except F1 for help.

I'm a bit out of my depth here. How can I configure alsamixer? Does my system use something else other than alsamixer? Is there any other way of configuring the master volume? Any advice gratefully received.

lspci

Code: Select all

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Broadwell-U Host Bridge -OPI (rev 09)
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Broadwell-U Integrated Graphics (rev 09)
00:03.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation Broadwell-U Audio Controller (rev 09)
00:04.0 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation Broadwell-U Camarillo Device (rev 09)
00:14.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP USB xHCI Controller (rev 03)
00:16.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP MEI Controller #1 (rev 03)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP High Definition Audio Controller (rev 03)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP PCI Express Root Port #1 (rev e3)
00:1c.2 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP PCI Express Root Port #3 (rev e3)
00:1c.3 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP PCI Express Root Port #4 (rev e3)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP LPC Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP SATA Controller [AHCI Mode] (rev 03)
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP SMBus Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.6 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation Wildcat Point-LP Thermal Management Controller (rev 03)
02:00.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8101/2/6E PCI Express Fast/Gigabit Ethernet controller (rev 07)
03:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Wireless 3165 (rev 81)
aplay -l

Code: Select all

**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: HDMI [HDA Intel HDMI], device 3: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: HDMI [HDA Intel HDMI], device 7: HDMI 1 [HDMI 1]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: HDMI [HDA Intel HDMI], device 8: HDMI 2 [HDMI 2]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 0: ALC3227 Analog [ALC3227 Analog]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
Last edited by loggerjack on Wed Dec 07, 2016 6:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

deepakdeshp
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by deepakdeshp » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:24 am

If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
I am using Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

loggerjack
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:34 am

Thanks for getting involved, deepakdeshp.

All the solutions in that link involve changing the settings in alsamixer, and as I explained, I can't make alsamixer work for me. If you can suggest why I can't change the settings in my alsamixer, that might be a way forward.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by deepakdeshp » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:42 am

You are welcome. You can install the latest kernel through update manager , reboot and test
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
I am using Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

loggerjack
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:25 pm

I've just done that but it's made no difference - still low sound volume. I can increase the sound volume by moving the output slider to 153% in sound settings, but the slider resets as soon as I adjust it.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by deepakdeshp » Sun Dec 04, 2016 3:15 pm

Somebody else may help you.
Good luck.
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
I am using Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by yaye » Sun Dec 04, 2016 3:16 pm

Hello

If you haven't tried it, start alsamixer, press F5 and see if you can adjust input and output levels there.
Unregistered Desktop Linux User since 1998 (Redhat 5.0 "Hurricane").

loggerjack
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Sun Dec 04, 2016 4:11 pm

Hi Yaye, I've tried that but none of the keys work on alsamixer except left and right arrow. I can't change views, I can't change values. I've never used alsamixer before so I haven't seen it, but when I search it in Google Images, I see an interface with 6 - 10 levels/controls, but mine isn't like that. All I see is 3 boxes, each with a double zero inside, labelled "S/PDIF", "S/PDIF 1", and "S/PDIF 2". I can select any of the 3 boxes with the left/right arrows but I can't change any of the values. None of the function keys do anything except F1 for help.

Can you explain why my alsamixer looks different to normal? I suspect that that might be the key to my problems.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by yaye » Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:54 pm

Sorry, I missed the part in your original post that said none of the function keys work. I don't know why the function keys aren't working. Maybe an external USB keyboard will work. Right now the non-digital audio is not being detected. I googled the Intel Corporation Broadwell-U Audio Controller that your laptop has and found this: https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=192628 . Looks like it's a kernel issue. I'm not sure if it is supported by newer kernels as yet. Once the analog device is recognized, alsamixer should look like the images you have seen.
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deepakdeshp
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by deepakdeshp » Mon Dec 05, 2016 7:38 am

Also apply all upgrades to get alsamixer to the latest version.
See this too.

The steps applcable to ubuntu 16.04 should be tried note the warnings too https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Sound ... gProcedure
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
I am using Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by greerd » Mon Dec 05, 2016 10:38 am

Hi loggerjack,

I might of missed if you tried this (I just skimmed the earlier posts) but you OP shows that alsamixer is set to digital o/p. If your using the internal speakers I think you would want the analog o/p. So I would run alsamixer, depress F6, select Sound Card 1 (not card 0) and then try and adjust the volume master using the up/ down and all around keys.

Cheers

loggerjack
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Tue Dec 06, 2016 5:36 pm

Hi yaye, deepakdeshp, and greerd, thank you all for your suggestions.

OK, I've now got alsamixer working. This is a new laptop and it turns out the keyboard wasn't configured properly. Sorry for throwing that red herring into the mix. I can now access alsamixer properly and change the values. Unfortunately this hasn't helped, because the master volume is already up to the max.

I'm afraid the stuff about the kernel is beyond my understanding or capability. I'm willing to give anything a go if I have clear instructions, but as you can see, I am not highly IT savvy.

I've run the update manager and it's presently reading 'Your system is up to date.'

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by deepakdeshp » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:11 pm

Good to know that your problem is solved .There is no need to update the kernel if everything is working..
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
I am using Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

loggerjack
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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:52 pm

deepakdeshp, I still have the original problem - the sound volume is too low. I can now access alsamixer but it doesn't seem to help. The master volume in alsamixer was already set to maximum. Let me repeat the problem :

I'm running this laptop (HP X031NA Energy Star) on dual boot, win 10 and mint 18 (Cinnamon 64-bit, version 3.0.6, kernel 4.4.0-21-generic). The sound volume on Mint is much less than on Windows. In Sound Settings, I can move the output volume slider to 153% without any distortion. The maximum volume is then about the same as when I'm in Windows, and I'd be happy if I could get it to stay at this setting. However if I adjust the volume even slightly, it immediately loses the extra 53%. Effectively this means I have to control the volume with the sound settings dialogue which is a bit clumsy.

So in other words, Linux Mint is only making 2/3 of the volume available to me.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by greerd » Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:11 pm

One more thing I can think of, is to open 'Sound Settings' while you are playing some music, make sure that the 'Built-in Audio' is selected, then click the 'Applications' tab which should show Banshee or what ever app your using and slide that slider slowly to full right (100%) (hopefully it wasn't so that would be your problem). If this helps, you should set you two volume controls so that the Application volume is 100% and the Output volume is set to your preferred level.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:48 pm

Thanks for keeping on trying, greerd. Still no luck though. The application volume is set at 100%. Looks like I am going to have to use external speakers. Pity, because otherwise Mint is operating perfectly on this laptop. Maybe a future update will solve the problem.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by greerd » Tue Dec 06, 2016 8:10 pm

We gotta be close, a click away! I'm not sure if external speakers are going to help. I have one more thing I can think of (#2) which would be to install pavucontrol from the repo sudo apt install pavucontrol and have a play with that, it'll show up in 'Menu' - 'Sound &Video' as 'PulseAudio Volume Control'. (more bells & whistles)

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA

Post by loggerjack » Tue Dec 06, 2016 9:12 pm

Yes, a sort of fix, thanks greerd.

All the volume controls in PulseAudio Volume Control offer me the extra 53%.

If I turn up the built in audio output to 153%, it's fine until I adjust the volume (via the icon in the system tray or the volume keys on my keyboard) and then the volume immediately resets to 100% which is too quiet. Exactly what happens if I do the same with the master volume in sound settings.

If I turn the volume up to 153% using the application (Firefox or Banshee) volume control, I CAN adjust the volume without it resetting, but it only lasts as long as the application is open. If, say, I close Firefox then reopen it, the volume resets to 100%.

So that's definitely an improvement on the way things were. The volume is loud enough at 153%, and if I set PulseAudio to launch at startup, I'll only have to set it once per day. (I'm one of those who switches his laptop off at night).

So unless you've got one more thing you can think of (#3), I'll settle for that for now and keep my eye out for a permanent solution in the future. Thanks for your help, greerd and others. Much appreciated.

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Re: Low sound volume - Mint 18 running on HP X031NA [PARTLY SOLVED]

Post by OppositeCube » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:29 am

ok did you found the solution that even if you reopen it, it stays at 150%?

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