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 Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2 
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Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2014 4:34 pm
Posts: 3
Post Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2
I bought recently Mintbox 2 and I am quite happy with it. However, I would like to have a better audio when using my headphones via 3,5mm audio jack. Now, I have quite much noise with it like there was something wrong with the settings and some heavy distortion in the line. I cross checked my headphoses with my laptop and they are OK.
The distortion is pretty annoying. It is possible to watch web tv or dvds but it spoils some movies and kills the music.

The Mintbox 2 is with fabric settings in general - only a couple of additional languages and software installed. Those should have no effect. Display is connected with DVI and headsed to the audio jack in the Mintbox. I have tested with a mouse with a wire or wireless but no difference. I tried with the pavucontol -tip I found in this forum. Closing wifi does not change anything. The strong distortion continues.

Any suggestions?

Thu Apr 03, 2014 6:24 pm

Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 5:47 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2
The best way to check and see if your Linux mint installation did not go bad somehow, is to reboot and load the Mintbox2 with a fresh live USB/CD. (try Ubuntu as well if you can while at it)
If sound is OK via 3.5mm using live USB/CD, then you know it's the OS!
*reinstall Linux mint and check sound via 3.5mm after each software you install! (can be an unknown bug or something like that, who knows...)
BUT, if sound is still distorted... then you might have a hardware issue, and you will need to contact Comulab.

Feedback will be appreciated.

Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:54 am

Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2014 4:34 pm
Posts: 3
Post Re: Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2
Thanks for the tip - I did not thought using a live distro. It seems to be something in the setup. I used another Linux Mint from live CD but still had the same audio problems. The good old live knoppix could not get any sound out. However, live Ubuntu got a perfect sound. I am not eager to change my installation and perhaps I continue changing someting in the audio setups - or pass the issue with some cheap USB sound card.

Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:37 pm

Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 5:47 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2
Before you jump on the USB sound card solution, pass the sound digitally via HDMI or DVI first and check the sound (drivers for Analog are not the same for Digital), like I said before, can be a small Analog bug or something...

For the record, I also have Mintbox2 (with Linux Mint 16) and sometimes while watching a movie the Analog sound will skip a sec or two... (but no sound distortions), I didn't tried Digital sound via HDMI yet...
Also, like you said, no sound problem what so ever on Ubuntu!

Please keep in mind:
1. Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu, so always default to the Ubuntu Live CD/USB for any kind of hardware test.
2. Linux Mint 17 that will come out this upcoming summer will be based on the new Ubuntu 14.04, it will have all the updated and latest kernel, settings, bug fixes and drivers... so if you can be patient little bit longer and planing to upgrade to Linux Mint 17 anyway, you might find the sound issue to be resolved.
3. Installing and using Ubuntu OS to solve the sound issue is cheaper and you will get a better sound quality vs a USB sound card.

Feedback on the Digital sound via HDMI/DVI will be appreciated, if you can.

Fri Apr 04, 2014 9:28 pm

Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2014 4:34 pm
Posts: 3
Post Re: Distorted sound in headphones Mintbox 2
After some googling I found that the same audio/spdif issue seems to be quite common. It seems that has been fixed in the latest Ubuntu. Currently, I do not have any available audio device using HDMI/DVI - that is why using this setup with my headphones. So, I have to skip this.

Of course I could change for Ubuntu but there are several features which I like in Mint. I have nothing against Ubuntu - just a question of taste. As I know that the next Mint LST will be in June and then I will update the setup anyway. Thus, I hope the issue will be fixed by then. And, swapping the system to Ubuntu is hardly cheaper. My time is not completely free, it is limited and using it is an investment as any other. I will rather invest two hours in jogging that for an extra change of the system :) But thanks for the suggestion!

Edit since my previous comment. In the thread
I was able to add an analogue headset to PulseAudio options. This seems to fix the distortion which I get if the only option is spdif. Some minor hissing in the line but I can live with it.

Sat Apr 05, 2014 3:19 pm
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