Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS)?

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Do you prefer, ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS)?

ALSA
73
65%
PulseAudio
29
26%
Open sound System (OSS)
10
9%
 
Total votes : 112

Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby ivanovnegro » 2011-09-21 09:46

kedaha wrote:If you really appreciate music - and the Spanish lute indicates you do - then I think you'll note the difference when you try OSS4.


You catched me. I am indeed a music junky and love also a good sound, almost my whole music library is ripped in high quality formats and I spend hours per day listening to music. Now you picked my interest even more to try out OSS4 and to see what difference you mean exactly. :D
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby Mr James » 2011-09-21 13:13

kedaha wrote:
Mr James wrote:For my setup, with ALSA I get the following issue:
Inability to have two sounds playing at once. If music or a movie is running, a system beep will disable the (any) media player's audio forcing me to restart the (any) media player.

So sound mixing is not supported? Does this also occur when using pa? What sound card is it?

PA supports simultaneous sound playback fine. From lspci: Intel Corporation 82801JI (ICH10 Family).

kedaha wrote:
Mr James wrote:With PulseAudio I get the following issue:
Plugging in a headphone mutes not only the speakers but the headphones as well requiring me to raise the headphone volume each and every time I plug the damn thing in.

Might be that's a precaution against leaving the volume too high so as not to damage the listener's hearing.

Well if so, it is a dumb ass feature. Take it down half way then. Muting the thing completely only makes one puzzled.

kedaha wrote:
Mr James wrote:Also, audio in Linux is an example of what I would call a mess: OSS, Jack, ALSA, Pulse...
Were I omnipotent, I would have OSS and Jack nuked and reallocated their resources (developers) to Pulse and/or ALSA.

Looks like this is happening, certainly in Ubuntu and Fedora, with pa bundled as the default in Gnome 3. I tried pa and was pleased with it and liked the GUI controls but will now use OSS4 on my main desktop because it has resulted in a considerable improvement in sound quality. But, whether one agrees or not that OSS4 sound quality is superior to PulseAudio - (it's a question of trying it and deciding for oneself) now being promoted by those distributions - Debian developers are unlikely to want to ditch OSS4, specially now that the source code is released under the GPL. It is a valid point that the coexistence of alternative systems to some extent can disperse resources but the advantage is that users can exercise freedom of choice in accordance with our preferences.

This isn't a DE or a text editor. It is an invisible subsystem. I'd rather have one audio subsystem that incorporates all features and modes of operation with a configuration file or a set of compilation switches to fine tune the thing to my preference - much like the kernel.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby Mr James » 2011-09-21 13:14

qjqqyy wrote:
Mr James wrote:For my setup, with ALSA I get the following issue:
Inability to have two sounds playing at once. If music or a movie is running, a system beep will disable the (any) media player's audio forcing me to restart the (any) media player.

With PulseAudio I get the following issue:
Plugging in a headphone mutes not only the speakers but the headphones as well requiring me to raise the headphone volume each and every time I plug the damn thing in.

Also, audio in Linux is an example of what I would call a mess: OSS, Jack, ALSA, Pulse...
Were I omnipotent, I would have OSS and Jack nuked and reallocated their resources (developers) to Pulse and/or ALSA.


OSS implements sounds in a true unix method, without non-unix hacks. Jack gives you low latency, for professional audio. Everything have their target audience.

Please see the end part of my reply to kedaha above.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby Mr James » 2011-09-21 13:18

This is ridiculous:

Image
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby phenest » 2011-09-21 19:11

Mr James wrote:This is ridiculous:

Image

I have to agree that it's about time all efforts were focused. It does seem that there is a solution for everyone but not from one single source. ALSA works for some, but not others. PA works for some but not others. OSS works for some... etc.

I did vote ALSA because it's default, but also it works for me without fault. OSS4 needs configuring somehow to enable 2.1 speakers, and to mute the speakers when using headphones. Having said that, why bother when ALSA works, and I'm unlikely to notice any improvement in sound quality with OSS on a laptop.

Is the topic title for this thread correct? Correct me if I'm wrong but PA is only a layer and relies on either ALSA or OSS for drivers.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby kedaha » 2011-09-21 21:41

phenest wrote:Is the topic title for this thread correct? Correct me if I'm wrong but PA is only a layer and relies on either ALSA or OSS for drivers.

Yes, the title is not so exact but the alternative was just to simply ask whether people used Alsa by itself or Alsa+PA or OSS+PA but the poll gives a rough idea of how many are using it rather than just default ALSA or OSS. Although few users express a preference for OSS as "the the default sound system (i.e. the standard interface supported by almost every Unix-like system around)," it's given in the debian wiki as a reason why users might prefer Debian GNU/kFreeBSD to Debian GNU/Linux.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby MarcusW » 2011-09-24 20:21

I prefer, and would like to use, Pulseaudio but it can't handle more than one program playing sounds at the same time on my machine for some reason. :(
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby vbrummond » 2011-09-24 20:49

MarcusW wrote:I prefer, and would like to use, Pulseaudio but it can't handle more than one program playing sounds at the same time on my machine for some reason. :(

Did you add the pulse stuff to /etc/asound.conf?

Pulseaudio I get various problems with it but otherwise I am neutral to it.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby kedaha » 2011-09-24 22:17

vbrummond wrote:I am unable to compile OSS4 on anything except 2.6.32. DKMS always fails. I am using Linux 3.0 (compiled myself from Debian sources). I tried to install OSS manually but it always fails to compile. The error was annoying, if I disable regparm in oss4 it says unable to find regparm and fails to compile. If is enable it it tells me to disable and fails at the make install step.

DKMS failed with the backported kernel and headers but - Success! I've been able to compile OSS4 - the stable oss-v4.2-build2005-src-gpl.tar.bz2 - on 2.6.38-bpo.2-amd64.
without the annoying regparm error:
The way round it is simply to do
Code: Select all
configure --enable-libsalsa=NO
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby MarcusW » 2011-09-25 08:56

vbrummond wrote:
MarcusW wrote:I prefer, and would like to use, Pulseaudio but it can't handle more than one program playing sounds at the same time on my machine for some reason. :(

Did you add the pulse stuff to /etc/asound.conf?

Pulseaudio I get various problems with it but otherwise I am neutral to it.


I think so. I added a bunch of stuff from some guide (I think it was pretty old though). Is that configuration required to get the sound working properly with pulse?

EDIT: Tried again with newer alsa, and now several programs can play at once, but not several users. I have a multiseat, so that kinda sucks. :(
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby prana_yama » 2011-09-25 13:03

It won't be bad to have and jack as an option(not that I use it). As far as I know, it's obligatorish for audio creation on Linux. It also may be used as backend for pulseadio. Of course the lowest level is ALSA or OSS(I was surprise that people are still using it under Linux).
Pulse got some rough edges, but it's look like the future for Linux user space audio server - so I tend to prefer it.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby carolinason » 2011-09-25 16:07

running pulse, but i have no control over the volume in the mixer. i have an optical cable running to a receiver and use its volume controller.

Code: Select all
$ lspci | grep -i audio
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 82801JI (ICH10 Family) HD Audio Controller


it seems i had no issues with oss, but had standard stereo computer speakers running back then too. i'm gonna check out the oss4 tut in this thread - cool thread btw.

i do have issues with amarok taking over the audio, but that's another thread.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby kedaha » 2011-09-26 00:24

carolinason wrote:it seems i had no issues with oss, but had standard stereo computer speakers running back then too. i'm gonna check out the oss4 tut in this thread - cool thread btw.

I got interested in OSS after reading Parsifal's Howto. I've added a reply about how to compile OSS from the gpl'd source here which you may like to have a look at.
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby phatsoundz » 2011-09-26 17:29

OSS4 is the best sound solution for Linux, period. Don't argue about it, it just is. All audiophiles and professionals agree. Many don't use it because they don't know any better and been spoonfed crap for years. Even with a basic 2.1 setup, you can hear a big difference. Try it, you won't regret it.

If for some reason, the debian package is not working for you, then by all means compile your own (a GPL'ed source is available). I made a howto on how to do this: Roll your own GPL'ed OSS4 (stable/testing/unstable)
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Re: Do you prefer ALSA, PulseAudio or Open Sound System (OSS

Postby prana_yama » 2011-09-27 18:26

Not, sure with the current OSS state, but it's kinda famous that ALSA has support for much more devices then OSS(usb, bluetooth, not sure if 50% of the laptops will even work with OSS). I got BSD with OSS, and LInux with ALSA on same machine - Linux has a lot more loud sound(it's another story if one speakers could handle it). In all cases choice is a good thing :)
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