Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

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Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Daniel Krebs
Hi,
I'm struggling to configure the audio output of my Fedora 25
installation. I'd like to find a way to easily switch between front
audio (headphones) and line out in Gnome Shell without physically
plugging/unplugging any jacks.

So to clarify my setup is as followed (on ASUS PRIME B350-PLUS Mainboard
with  Realtek ALC887 Audio Codec):

* Headphones connected to the front headphone jack of my case via
internal mainboard header

* Amplifier connected to green jack on the mainboards backpanel

When both, amp and headphones, are connected, the sound is only played
via headphones. In the Gnome audio settings the the line out output
device disappears and there is only the headphones output device.

Then I used alsamixer so change "Auto-Mute Mode" from [Enabled] to
[Disabled]. This way sound is played via amp and headphones
simultaneously. Gnome audio settings still shows only the headphones as
output device. I can than change Volume of "Headphones" and "Front" via
alsamixer separately to get any mute/unmute combination I want but
obviously this is neither comfortable nor compatible with any gnome
extensions that would let me change output easily (like
https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/906/sound-output-device-chooser/)

I generated more Information with the alsa-info.sh script which can be
found here:
http://www.alsa-project.org/db/?f=9c9fd41a57760353f5989f85ae5b8e9185d1c2f6

Any Ideas?

Thanks

DK
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Ed Greshko
On 06/11/17 18:40, Daniel Krebs wrote:

> I'm struggling to configure the audio output of my Fedora 25
> installation. I'd like to find a way to easily switch between front
> audio (headphones) and line out in Gnome Shell without physically
> plugging/unplugging any jacks.
>
> So to clarify my setup is as followed (on ASUS PRIME B350-PLUS
> Mainboard with  Realtek ALC887 Audio Codec):
>
> * Headphones connected to the front headphone jack of my case via
> internal mainboard header
>
> * Amplifier connected to green jack on the mainboards backpanel
>
> When both, amp and headphones, are connected, the sound is only played
> via headphones. In the Gnome audio settings the the line out output
> device disappears and there is only the headphones output device.
>
> Then I used alsamixer so change "Auto-Mute Mode" from [Enabled] to
> [Disabled]. This way sound is played via amp and headphones
> simultaneously. Gnome audio settings still shows only the headphones
> as output device. I can than change Volume of "Headphones" and "Front"
> via alsamixer separately to get any mute/unmute combination I want but
> obviously this is neither comfortable nor compatible with any gnome
> extensions that would let me change output easily (like
> https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/906/sound-output-device-chooser/)
>
> I generated more Information with the alsa-info.sh script which can be
> found here:
> http://www.alsa-project.org/db/?f=9c9fd41a57760353f5989f85ae5b8e9185d1c2f6
>
>
> Any Ideas?

Personally, I like to use pavucontrol (Pulse Audio Volume Control).

I have 2 Audio Output Devices.  One is the built-in audio device on my
mother board, the other HDMI audio out on my nVidia card.  With
pavucontrol I can select which device I want a particular application to
use and I can mute and adjust volume individually.  My headphones are
out of order at the moment due to the cord being chewed by a cat and I
don't need it....but if I plugged it in I would have a 3rd output device
and could assign it on a per application basis.


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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Daniel Krebs

Am 11.06.2017 um 13:22 schrieb Ed Greshko:

> On 06/11/17 18:40, Daniel Krebs wrote:
>> I'm struggling to configure the audio output of my Fedora 25
>> installation. I'd like to find a way to easily switch between front
>> audio (headphones) and line out in Gnome Shell without physically
>> plugging/unplugging any jacks.
>>
>> So to clarify my setup is as followed (on ASUS PRIME B350-PLUS
>> Mainboard with  Realtek ALC887 Audio Codec):
>>
>> * Headphones connected to the front headphone jack of my case via
>> internal mainboard header
>>
>> * Amplifier connected to green jack on the mainboards backpanel
>>
>> When both, amp and headphones, are connected, the sound is only played
>> via headphones. In the Gnome audio settings the the line out output
>> device disappears and there is only the headphones output device.
>>
>> Then I used alsamixer so change "Auto-Mute Mode" from [Enabled] to
>> [Disabled]. This way sound is played via amp and headphones
>> simultaneously. Gnome audio settings still shows only the headphones
>> as output device. I can than change Volume of "Headphones" and "Front"
>> via alsamixer separately to get any mute/unmute combination I want but
>> obviously this is neither comfortable nor compatible with any gnome
>> extensions that would let me change output easily (like
>> https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/906/sound-output-device-chooser/)
>>
>> I generated more Information with the alsa-info.sh script which can be
>> found here:
>> http://www.alsa-project.org/db/?f=9c9fd41a57760353f5989f85ae5b8e9185d1c2f6
>>
>>
>> Any Ideas?
>
>
> Personally, I like to use pavucontrol (Pulse Audio Volume Control).
>
> I have 2 Audio Output Devices.  One is the built-in audio device on my
> mother board, the other HDMI audio out on my nVidia card.  With
> pavucontrol I can select which device I want a particular application to
> use and I can mute and adjust volume individually.  My headphones are
> out of order at the moment due to the cord being chewed by a cat and I
> don't need it....but if I plugged it in I would have a 3rd output device
> and could assign it on a per application basis.

I tried that, but with the same results. Choosing Headphones plays Audio
on both, headphones as well as line-out. Choosing line-out plays only on
line-out. Whats strange is, that it shows line-out as "(unplugged)"
while actually it is plugged and plays sound..

DK
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Ed Greshko
On 06/11/17 22:54, Daniel Krebs wrote:
> I tried that, but with the same results. Choosing Headphones plays
> Audio on both, headphones as well as line-out. Choosing line-out plays
> only on line-out. Whats strange is, that it shows line-out as
> "(unplugged)" while actually it is plugged and plays sound..


First, I wasn't thinking straight in my earlier reply.  The headphones I
was thinking of were my USB headphones and they do indeed result in a 3
auto device being listed.  However, what I really have are 2 devices.

00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset
High Definition Audio (rev 05)
01:00.1 Audio device: NVIDIA Corporation GK106 HDMI Audio Controller
(rev a1)

I have my Bose speakers plugged into the line-out on the back-panel of
my tower.  In pavucontrol it shows as plugged in.  When I plugin a set
of headphones into the headphone jack at the front of the tower the
speakers cut out and the headphones are active and show active in
pavucontrol.

http://tinyurl.com/yave5h2g  has some screenshots which I think are self
explanatory.

I think it is the job of the HW to cut out the Line output when the
headphones are inserted and inform the SW.  FWIW, I'm also using KDE but
it shouldn't make a difference.

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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Daniel Krebs
Am 12.06.2017 um 01:15 schrieb Ed Greshko:

> 00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset
> High Definition Audio (rev 05)
> 01:00.1 Audio device: NVIDIA Corporation GK106 HDMI Audio Controller
> (rev a1)
>
> I have my Bose speakers plugged into the line-out on the back-panel of
> my tower.  In pavucontrol it shows as plugged in.  When I plugin a set
> of headphones into the headphone jack at the front of the tower the
> speakers cut out and the headphones are active and show active in
> pavucontrol.
>
> http://tinyurl.com/yave5h2g  has some screenshots which I think are self
> explanatory.
> I think it is the job of the HW to cut out the Line output when the
> headphones are inserted and inform the SW.  FWIW, I'm also using KDE but
> it shouldn't make a difference.

Well, I certainly agree that it is nice to have such a feature. My
Problem is, that the 3.5 mm connectors tend to wear out quiet fast so
I'd like to not pull them in and out multiple times a day...
A bad contact gets very annoying and is not good for amp or headphones
either I think (you know, the loud crack when you put in the plugs while
the amp is running)

I just tried with Windows 10 and the third Driver did it: I can switch
between headphones and amp while both are plugged, so it's possible
somehow..

DK
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Ahmad Samir
On 12 June 2017 at 19:19, Daniel Krebs <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Am 12.06.2017 um 01:15 schrieb Ed Greshko:
>>
>> 00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset
>> High Definition Audio (rev 05)
>> 01:00.1 Audio device: NVIDIA Corporation GK106 HDMI Audio Controller
>> (rev a1)
>>
>> I have my Bose speakers plugged into the line-out on the back-panel of
>> my tower.  In pavucontrol it shows as plugged in.  When I plugin a set
>> of headphones into the headphone jack at the front of the tower the
>> speakers cut out and the headphones are active and show active in
>> pavucontrol.
>>
>> http://tinyurl.com/yave5h2g  has some screenshots which I think are self
>> explanatory.
>> I think it is the job of the HW to cut out the Line output when the
>> headphones are inserted and inform the SW.  FWIW, I'm also using KDE but
>> it shouldn't make a difference.
>
>
> Well, I certainly agree that it is nice to have such a feature. My Problem
> is, that the 3.5 mm connectors tend to wear out quiet fast so I'd like to
> not pull them in and out multiple times a day...
> A bad contact gets very annoying and is not good for amp or headphones
> either I think (you know, the loud crack when you put in the plugs while the
> amp is running)
>
[...]

A crude/basic workaround would be to use something like this command:
$ amixer -q set Headphone toggle && amixer -q set Front toggle

This assumes you have one of them muted and the other unmuted and
it'll simply toggle their states.

You can assign this command to a _custom_ shortcut in the
gnome-control-center -> Keyboard and assign some hotkey or key combo
to invoke it.

--
Ahmad Samir
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Ed Greshko-2
In reply to this post by Daniel Krebs
On 06/13/17 01:19, Daniel Krebs wrote:
> Well, I certainly agree that it is nice to have such a feature. My
> Problem is, that the 3.5 mm connectors tend to wear out quiet fast so
> I'd like to not pull them in and out multiple times a day...
> A bad contact gets very annoying and is not good for amp or headphones
> either I think (you know, the loud crack when you put in the plugs
> while the amp is running)

FWIW, just to clarify.  I'm not pulling out the connector at the back of
the tower that is connected to the speakers.  It seems the HW is doing
that in some manner.  I've not had a 3.5mm jack go bad on me.  Then
again I don't use headphones all that much with my PC and when I do I
just use Bluetooth.

>
> I just tried with Windows 10 and the third Driver did it: I can switch
> between headphones and amp while both are plugged, so it's possible
> somehow..


If I get the chance later today I'll check to see if the KDE systray app
offers a different settings option.

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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Daniel Krebs
In reply to this post by Ahmad Samir
Am 12.06.2017 um 19:54 schrieb Ahmad Samir:

>
> A crude/basic workaround would be to use something like this command:
> $ amixer -q set Headphone toggle && amixer -q set Front toggle
>
> This assumes you have one of them muted and the other unmuted and
> it'll simply toggle their states.
>
> You can assign this command to a _custom_ shortcut in the
> gnome-control-center -> Keyboard and assign some hotkey or key combo
> to invoke it.
I see what you're doing there, yeah it really a crude workaround ;)
But I will have a look into it!

DK
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Daniel Krebs
In reply to this post by Ed Greshko-2

Am 12.06.2017 um 22:00 schrieb Ed Greshko:
> FWIW, just to clarify.  I'm not pulling out the connector at the back of
> the tower that is connected to the speakers.  It seems the HW is doing
> that in some manner.  I've not had a 3.5mm jack go bad on me.  Then
> again I don't use headphones all that much with my PC and when I do I
> just use Bluetooth.
I have 2 Laptops with that problem but might also be crappy hardware, I
never had problems with mp3-players or mobile phones.

> If I get the chance later today I'll check to see if the KDE systray app
> offers a different settings option.
Thanks, I'm thinking of reaching out to the ALSA guys, will post here if
there are any updates.

DK
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Re: Control audio output between Line Out and Headphones

Ed Greshko
On 06/13/17 13:43, Daniel Krebs wrote:
>
>> If I get the chance later today I'll check to see if the KDE systray app
>> offers a different settings option.
> Thanks, I'm thinking of reaching out to the ALSA guys, will post here
> if there are any updates.


I tried the KDE systray app on my towerPC as well as pavucontrol and KDE
systray app on an Acer laptop.  In all cases when the headphone jack is
used the line-out connection is either shown as "unplugged" or
"unavailable".

Good luck with the ALSA folks.  Sorry to be of little help.

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