The Great Pulseaudio Mixer Debate: a modest (productive) proposal

Adam Williamson awilliam at
Sat Apr 25 06:26:48 UTC 2009

On Sat, 2009-04-25 at 04:39 +0200, Rémy Maucherat wrote:

> Reading the IRC log, the Fesco members technical arguments sound
> limited, and do focus on legacy use cases. That's really 10 years old
> stuff (CD line in - PC speaker was mentioned too - unused for me in
> that timeframe ...), so if this does not represent less than 5% of
> users, I wonder what will.

The significant use case that is not currently covered - the one I'm
really worried about - is what I refer to consistently (here and in the
meeting) as 'input switching'. The new g-v-c has no way to select the
input device. If the default does not happen to be the one you actually
want to record from, you're stuck. The rest of the cases discussed have
really been either bugs or corner cases and I'm not too concerned about
those, the bugs will be fixed and we shouldn't worry about corner cases
too much. Input switching is the biggie, and it is not a 'legacy use
case', it is half of the functionality of any sound adapter.

Lennart has acknowledged this as a missing feature that will be added in
the F12 timeframe, which is why I've already said that as long as that
happens - and most of the 'the slider doesn't really control my volume'
bugs are fixed - I'd be happy for the alternative mixer not to be
installed by default from F12 on.

> where breakage is well
> accepted on the graphics side, not so on the sound side it seems.

Breakage should never be accepted where there's a sensible and low-cost
Adam Williamson <awilliam at>
Red Hat

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