Author Topic: bad audio quality on MD  (Read 2102 times)

MarcoZan

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bad audio quality on MD
« on: October 16, 2007, 06:07:53 pm »
Hi all

on a VIA based MD I'm getting bad quality audio, no matter what the source is.
Either audio from DVD, or from avi files or from mp3 files comes out with a lot of "bumps" and "clicks".

I've tampered a bit with sound configuration (increased buffer, encoder priority, encoder quality) but no avail. Any sound (including system sound) is coming out badly.

The very same MD used to play a very clear audio with Pluto, so I guess the issue has something to do with configuration or maybe drivers.

Anyone is experiencing something similar?
Anyone has some hints?

TIA
Marco

1audio

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2007, 07:59:49 am »
We need a few more details on how you set it up. The Via can sound very good. Which Via board? Which driver? What else is running on the box? If you run Alsamixer from a terminal screen what are the settings? I found that 100 on front and 77 on main are the maximum before distortion.

MarcoZan

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2007, 08:45:40 am »
Hi 1audio and thanks for your reply.

Here we go with specs:

Mobo is VIA EPIA M 10000, (C3 1gHz, CLE266 North Bridge, VT8235M South Bridge, 512 MB Ram).

MD is set to have "Standard sound card" and "Stereo" audio setting. Driver is snd_via82xx shipped with Kubuntu.

Alsamixer is ok, meaning that I already opened it and reduced all relevant level, with no effect on my issue.

We are not talking anyway about distortion. sound comes out with very clear chunks even at high volume interrupted by (I don't know the  tech word to explain ..) some "bumps"

I don't understand what you mean by "What else is running on the box". It is a standard MD, with UI1 interface and  is used only for audio/video playback.

If I go to KDE desktop and try to play any system sound I can notice the same problem. Also tried to play some mp3 with amarok, with same result. So it is not something related to xine itself, but something more general.

I know that VIA can sound very good, mine actually used to play a very clear sound under Pluto.

If you need some more details just drop a line.

Thanks again and regards
Marco

1audio

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2007, 08:51:15 am »
Can you try installing the latest driver from Via Arena? It may work better. The other stuff was to make sure there aren't other processes running in the system like disk rips or ?? but as an MD that shouldn't be an issue. Is there a chance that its a network issue? (Grasping at straws) Can you transfer some sound files to a usb drive and try them locally to see if its still there ?

Hagen

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2007, 10:39:00 am »
Try a different soundcard, any soundblaster you can get your hands on, even dirt old ones.
See if you have the same problems with one of those.
I had bad sound and put in an old SB live, improved dramatically.

Just a thought

MarcoZan

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2007, 11:19:05 am »
Thanks to all for reply.

Unfortunately I've no spare SB or other sound card, so I think I will give a go to latest drivers /local playback.

Will keep you posted about progress (if any)

Thanks again and regards
Marco

MarcoZan

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2007, 11:33:44 pm »
Hi all

some update after a long time.

I've made sote attempt in order to verify whether the bad audio coming out from my VIA MD depends from hw or sw.

The tests I've made are:

1. I took a usb pen, copied some mp3 over it and plugged into MD. then managed to play mp3 from usb pen, with same bad quality.

This proves that network transfers are not implied in this issue, as I get the same result playing network files and local files.
May it be hw problem ? I made the following test to check it out

2. I took a knoppix 5.1.1 live dvd, put into MD and rebooted. Then I plugged the very same usb pen and played the very same mp3, with cristal clear result.

So my hardware is not faulty and this is a great news. At this point audio quality is a matter of drivers. Probably knoppix 5.1.1 has better drivers, even if it sounds really strange to me.

And here comes the last test I've made.

3. I took the kubuntu 7.0.4 cd used to make initial LMCE install, put into MD and rebooted. so my MD booted fine with the very same vanilla "feisty fawn" upon wich LMCE is based. I played the very same mp3 from the very same usb pen with cristal clear sound.

I should also say that kubuntu 7.0.4 recognized immediately the proper modeline of my 42 " plasma and allowed me to use 1024x768 out of the box (with LMCE and AVwizard I cannot get past 800x600).

So a very rough analisys tells me that network, hw and audio drivers look OK, and bad audio is due to something strange related specifically to LMCE.

Is this assumption somehow correct or am I missing something?

Any suggestion?

TIA and regards
Marco

Hagen

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2007, 07:28:26 am »
LMCE probably did override the 'good' drivers in 0704, therefore I have high expectations for the 0710 as all drivers should be updated.

Zaerc

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2007, 01:22:28 pm »
LMCE probably did override the 'good' drivers in 0704, therefore I have high expectations for the 0710 as all drivers should be updated.
In my experience, having high expectations only leads to big disappointments.  ;)
"Change is inevitable. Progress is optional."
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MarcoZan

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #9 on: December 11, 2007, 08:41:32 am »
LMCE probably did override the 'good' drivers in 0704, therefore I have high expectations for the 0710 as all drivers should be updated.
In my experience, having high expectations only leads to big disappointments.  ;)

That's exactly why I'm trying to find (if possible) a "7.10 independent" solution, or at least a viable workaround that may also be applied to next release if needed.

As I'm not clear about what LMCE modifies when installed on top of Kubuntu, is there anyone that may give me some hints or directions do dig to?

TIA and regards
Marco

Hagen

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2007, 09:10:51 am »
hehehe
To clarify, I have expectations that the new nvidia drivers, new Lirc version and MCE USB-IR drivers is bundled. That is where most of the currently obvious problems comes from. the typical 'I just installed and all I get is a black screen' posts should hopefully be fewer and further between  ;D

Zaerc

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2007, 01:38:07 pm »
hehehe
To clarify, I have expectations that the new nvidia drivers, new Lirc version and MCE USB-IR drivers is bundled. That is where most of the currently obvious problems comes from. the typical 'I just installed and all I get is a black screen' posts should hopefully be fewer and further between  ;D
Unless the AVWizard starts using all possible displays simultaneously I'm willing to bet we're going to keep having those because 0710 sure won't be teaching all those users how to read the instructions.  :D
"Change is inevitable. Progress is optional."
-- Anonymous


Hagen

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2007, 01:54:20 pm »
 ;D

jeff_rigby

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2007, 06:39:11 pm »
1. I took a usb pen, copied some mp3 over it and plugged into MD. then managed to play mp3 from usb pen, with same bad quality.

This proves that network transfers are not implied in this issue, as I get the same result playing network files and local files.

If you plug any drive into a MD the file goes to the core thru the network and then back to the MD thru the network to be played.  What you have done is confirm it is not a MD hardware issue but your network and or core could be the problem.

MarcoZan

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Re: bad audio quality on MD
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2007, 08:13:07 pm »
1. I took a usb pen, copied some mp3 over it and plugged into MD. then managed to play mp3 from usb pen, with same bad quality.

This proves that network transfers are not implied in this issue, as I get the same result playing network files and local files.

If you plug any drive into a MD the file goes to the core thru the network and then back to the MD thru the network to be played.  What you have done is confirm it is not a MD hardware issue but your network and or core could be the problem.


Wait a moment: are you saying that when I put a DVD into the local drive all audio/video data are routed to core and then back to MD for playback, and all this back-and-forth is running over the network?

Is there anyone of the devs that can confirm or correct this?

In the mean time let me say that this does not make much sense to me.

I have decent performances for video playback, that requires way more data than mp3 audio.

If really all data have to go to core and go back to MD I would have orrific video also, which I don't have actually.

Anyone can shed some light upon this?

TIA
Marco
« Last Edit: December 14, 2007, 10:12:06 pm by MarcoZan »