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No LFE channel (subwoofer) in Ubuntu.
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satsun Offline
Junior Member

Posts: 13
Joined: May 2011
Reputation: 0
Post: #1
Not Solved No LFE channel (subwoofer) in Ubuntu.

I'm running Ubuntu 11.10 64bit with a Creative X-Fi Titanium PCI-E card. In the sound mixer I have it setup for 7.1 + mono input (mic) and when I test each channel I get sound in all including the LFE. After a fresh install, the center and LFE are always muted so I unmute them via alsamixer.

LFE does work in Banshee media player when watching movies.

My audio options in the launcher are:
PulseAudio Software
ALSA Software on default

I get 7 channels working properly but no LFE channel.

This is using ALSA:
Initializing Sound Module
--------------------------------------------------------
Initializing OpenAL
  Available OpenAL devices:
   0. PulseAudio Software(OpenAL default)
   1. ALSA Software on default
   2. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,3)
   3. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,7)
   4. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,8)
   5. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,9)
   6. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Front/WaveIn] (hw:1,0)
   7. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Surround] (hw:1,1)
   8. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Center/LFE] (hw:1,2)
   9. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Side] (hw:1,3)
   10. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [IEC958 Non-audio] (hw:1,4)
  Trying to open device 'ALSA Software on default'... Success!
  Number of mono sources: 32
  Streaming setup: 4 Buffers x 262144 bytes each

This is using PulseAudio:
Initializing Sound Module
--------------------------------------------------------
Initializing OpenAL
  Available OpenAL devices:
   0. PulseAudio Software(OpenAL default)
   1. ALSA Software on default
   2. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,3)
   3. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,7)
   4. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,8)
   5. ALSA Software on HDA NVidia [HDMI 0] (hw:0,9)
   6. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Front/WaveIn] (hw:1,0)
   7. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Surround] (hw:1,1)
   8. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Center/LFE] (hw:1,2)
   9. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [Side] (hw:1,3)
   10. ALSA Software on Creative X-Fi [IEC958 Non-audio] (hw:1,4)
  Trying to open device 'PulseAudio Software'... Success!
  Number of mono sources: 32
  Streaming setup: 4 Buffers x 262144 bytes each
But with PulseAudio I get this message:
$ AL lib: pulseaudio.c:412: Failed to find format for channel map:
    front-left,front-right,rear-left,rear-right,front-center,lfe,side-left,side-right

Any ideas? Do I need to install some other OpenAL library?

Let me know if any other information is needed.
(This post was last modified: 10-29-2011 07:30 PM by satsun.)
10-29-2011 07:15 PM
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Urkle Offline
FG - Associate

Posts: 1,153
Joined: Jul 2006
Reputation: 19
Post: #2
Not Solved RE: No LFE channel (subwoofer) in Ubuntu.

Do you have libopenal1 installed on your system? or are you using the included openal?

You can check this by looking at the libs64 folder in the amnesia game folder. of libopenal.so.1 is symlinked in there you are using the included openal. (it is symlinked from the all subfolder). Make sure to install your system openal (libopenal1 on Ubuntu) and rerun the checklibs64.sh script.

For full 3d audio support, openal itself has to support it correctly for your card, we are including an "older" version of the OpenAL-Soft implementation, which may not correctly support everything. The distribution version is newer so should yield better results.

If you are already using the distribution version, you can try upgrading to a newer version by downloading and recompiling it from http://kcat.strangesoft.net/openal.html

Developing away on one of
Mac Pro Dual 2Ghz, 14GB RAM, 10.6 (still), nVidia 8800 512MB.
Linux, 8-core AMD, 8GB RAM, Fedora 17, nVidia 450 1GB
10-29-2011 08:03 PM
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satsun Offline
Junior Member

Posts: 13
Joined: May 2011
Reputation: 0
Post: #3
Not Solved RE: No LFE channel (subwoofer) in Ubuntu.

I did make sure all libs were correct and symlinked. Same result.

I've come to the conclusion that this is either a lack of a feature in OpenAL or OpenAL games just not being properly told to utilize the LFE channel. I booted to Windows, disabled any bass redirection features and no OpenAL games sent bass to the subwoofer while FMOD, XAudio, and DirectSound seemed to be using the LFE in some games. It was probably dependent on how the games were told to direct the audio by the programmers.

In Windows 7, if you tell it that your speakers (in speaker configuration) aren't full-range speakers then it will direct lower frequencies to the subwoofer channel; for this test I told it that my speakers were full-range so Windows OS doesn't redirect bass to the subwoofer, it leaves that up to the application. Creative's driver software also has a bass redirection option but this rarely works properly; I disabled it as well for this test.

With all bass redirection disabled, I tested 11 games of which 6 actually used the LFE channel properly. Super Street Fighter 4 AE and Resident Evil 5 seem to use Directsound and used the LFE. Crysis, Deus Ex HR, and Batman AA used FMOD and used LFE properly. RAGE uses XAudio and it worked properly with LFE also. I tried Amnesia, Unreal Tournament 3, and DOOM 3 and had no LFE from those OpenAL games.

I'll dig around to find out if I can work out bass redirection through ALSA.
(This post was last modified: 10-30-2011 08:30 PM by satsun.)
10-30-2011 08:29 PM
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Urkle Offline
FG - Associate

Posts: 1,153
Joined: Jul 2006
Reputation: 19
Post: #4
Not Solved RE: No LFE channel (subwoofer) in Ubuntu.

You might want to try posting to the OpenAL mailing list ( http://opensource.creative.com/mailman/listinfo/openal ) or ( http://opensource.creative.com/mailman/l...enal-devel ) and asking there for information about support or even how to GET support into the OpenAL drivers.

I did find this page about surround setup in linux (and makes reference to LFE). so it might help getting things working. And of course it is rather hilarious that searching for OpenAL LFE on google yields THIS forum post as the 2nd result!

Developing away on one of
Mac Pro Dual 2Ghz, 14GB RAM, 10.6 (still), nVidia 8800 512MB.
Linux, 8-core AMD, 8GB RAM, Fedora 17, nVidia 450 1GB
10-31-2011 03:26 AM
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