[Nottingham] unable to set microphone volume

Martin martin at ml1.co.uk
Thu Apr 9 16:35:06 UTC 2020


Very good to see you on the list!

Hopefully we can see and hear you later today? ;-)

Very good details from Jason.

I too have some sound problems that are yet to be 'investigated further'...

(My 'work-around for pulseaudio fix' has been to submit to enabling and
using the built-in microphone on an old webcam that pulseaudio
fortuitously happens to recognise directly... Everything else through
ALSA for me remains disconnected thus far...)

The best instructions/details I've found so far are on the ever-reliable
Arch wiki:


There are very many various other very turgid docs for Pulseaudio... How
can an audio system be so multifarious and convoluted?! (Sorry, yep, bad

Note that your microphone should be listed as a "source" and your
headphones/speakers listed as a "sink".

(My problem is that yes, I get all my sinks and sources listed by
pulseaudio, but they are also listed as "unavailable"...!)

Silly question:

Is there a manual physical switch to turn on to unmute the mic?

One 'quick test' is to see if:

With your whatever videoconferencing app running, do you see for the
PulseAudio GUI Volume Control something like the image below (appended
to this message).

Hopefully for the "Input Devices" tab, you see a recognisable unmuted
input device? If so, you can set the input gain accordingly...

Good luck?

(IT support should never need to use phrases such as "hopefully" and
"good luck"!...)

My attempts to connect ALSA through to PulseAudio for myself can wait
for another night...

Hope you're keeping well.

Stay safe!

On 09/04/2020 11:41, J J via Nottingham wrote:
> On Wed, 8 Apr 2020 at 20:35, godfrey--- via Nottingham
> <nottingham at mailman.lug.org.uk <mailto:nottingham at mailman.lug.org.uk>>
> wrote:
>     Hi folks,
>     In these days of isolation amd remote meetings on the internet, I find
>     the mic on my system is very low volume.
>     Some may say thanks, but I want to join in zoom and skype sessions.
>     Yeah, I know of security worries but those are the access programs
>     being
>     used.
>     I have been through sound settings, pavucontrol and other configuration
>     progs, but mic volume control remains unable to be selected/altered.
>     I am using ASUS laptop and Ubuntu 18.04
>     Any suggestions as to how I might get it fixed?
>     Godfrey

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