[PlanetCCRMA] Soundblaster Live/ALSA drivers problem

Rohan Parkes rparkes@email.com
Wed May 21 16:44:01 2003

I have a Soundblaster Live Platinum running on Red Hat 8.0

I have installed the low latency kernel and ALSA driver RPMs, and run
the ALSAConf script, which correctly detected my card.

Unfortunately, the results are currently terrible. The sound is weak and
scratchy when I try to play audio files, and all in the left front
speaker if I use line-in (rather like what you would expect under
Windows if you had 5.1 speakers but had the audio settings set to 2
speakers). It often gets faint and distorted over time.

I can also hear faint interference in the speakers related to
keypress/mouse movements at times (suggesting IRQ problems?).

I've messed around a bit with the alasmixer, but the settings don't
improve the sound output. 

I've looked over some of the HOWTOs, but would appreciate some advice,
as the point of installing the drivers this way was to get around most
of these technical issues.

I am also confused about a few issues in the CCRMA instructions.

Firstly, is it necessary to use the updated kernel with the provided
ALSA drivers? The notes seem to suggest it's optional, but I found that
the ALSAconf script didn't seem to work until I booted the new kernel I
only ask because I don't strictly need it on the machine I'm currently
working on, and my TV capture card doesn't seem to like it for some
reason. I mainly wanted the ALSA drivers for some game development, and
wanted to preview the CCRMA stuff before trying it on a dedicated
multimedia machine.

Also, the notes tell you to start the ALSA driver using

/etc/rc.d/init.d/alsasound start

However, if I do this, it tells me that the driver is already running.
For this reason, I haven't done anything with chkconfig to make the
drivers start automatically.

The machine is a Dell OptiPlex GX240. The Soundblaster card was supplied
by me (I know the version Dell supplies isn't supported).

I'd appreciate any assistance anyone could give me.

Rohan Parkes