Saturday, February 26, 2011

Crunchbang : Perfect Audio in Alienware m11X with OSS

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamualaikum WBT. I have been trying to get my sound works simultaneously on this lappy for a few days now until I recently discovered someone said OSS is better than anything else in comparison of sound quality.

I tried ALSA, compiled from scratch with the latest build but I couldn't get it to play many sounds together simultaneously, let say listening to music and playing game at the same time. I also got my hands into PulseAudio even though the majority in Crunchbang community pretty much hate PA. Now, I know why they want to ban PA so much. I tested PA with YouTube, the video lags with no sound at all until I killed the PA server.

I never thought of trying OSS until today and I glad that I found Martin Baselier's blog about changing alsa to OSS4. Once OSS is installed, my audio works like charm. I got simultaneous audio and awesome and crisp quality out of it. However, I lost my volume system tray icon. Crunchbang uses volumeicon (Maato) by default. I ran volumeicon manually and got this error

~$ volumeicon volumeicon: mixer.c:905: snd_mixer_elem_set_callback: Assertion `mixer' failed. Aborted

In Crunchbang forum, the solution is to remove the ~/.config/volumeicon/volumeicon settings file which resulting to this error instead for me.

volumeicon: asound.c:54: asound_get_volume: Assertion `m_elem != ((void *)0)' failed. Aborted

Then I looked into the official site of volumeicon by Matoo. The solution for me was to remove the default volumeicon using sudo apt-get remove volumeicon and reinstall it from source with enable OSS option.

This is how I did it :

1. Download the source from Matoo website.

2. Extract, and install volumeicon from source with --oss-enable option.

./configure --prefix=/usr --oss-enable 
sudo make install

3. Taraaa ~~~ You got your volumeicon back.

Thank You to all the contributors of OSS, Volume Icon and Crunchbang #! community!

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