Sound pops and cracks

Issues Related to Hardware (Sound, Video, Printers, Scanners, Webcams, Touchpads, Keyboards, Sensors, Drives, GRUB, etc.)

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Fitzcarraldo
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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by Fitzcarraldo » Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:42

msdobrescu wrote:Could be the USB overloaded?
Could be. Only you can find this out, by a process of elimination. Remove all USB devices except the keyboard, mouse and USB sound device, and see whether the problem still occurs.

PulseAudio is notorious for causing problems. Search the Web and try each of the suggested changes to PulseAudio configuration. Here are just a couple of the many different problems that can affect PulseAudio:

1. Disable realtime scheduling:

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# grep realtime-scheduling /etc/pulse/default.pa
realtime-scheduling = no
2. Adjust PulseAudio sampling frequency: Audio in Linux becomes annoying again (continued)

There are several other potential fixes to PulseAudio. There are so many that the Arch Linux Wiki has a whole article on troubleshooting PulseAudio: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Pu ... leshooting

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by msdobrescu » Tue Jan 29, 2019 13:09

Thanks, I have already tried and seems to be the same.
Anyway, is there an alternative to PulseAudio?
Is there a list of known to work without issues soundcards?

I know, I was misinformed buying nVidia video cards, seems that ATI work better on Linux...
Could it be the case of Creative or some specific models too?

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by Fitzcarraldo » Tue Jan 29, 2019 13:20

msdobrescu wrote:Anyway, is there an alternative to PulseAudio?
No.
msdobrescu wrote:Is there a list of known to work without issues soundcards?
I don't know of one. Try searching the Web?
msdobrescu wrote:I know, I was misinformed buying nVidia video cards, seems that ATI work better on Linux...
NVIDIA is awful. One of my machines has NVIDIA Optimus hardware and is a PITA to configure and use.
msdobrescu wrote:Could it be the case of Creative or some specific models too?
I don't know. Try searching the Web for your specific model?

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by msdobrescu » Tue Jan 29, 2019 13:23

Right.
Regarding nVidia Optimus, I have one too, a laptop. Do you happen to know what to do in order to make a second display working?

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by msdobrescu » Tue Jan 29, 2019 23:01

Fitzcarraldo wrote:
Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:42
2. Adjust PulseAudio sampling frequency: Audio in Linux becomes annoying again (continued)
The above works, apparently, bu Firefox became slow in reaction to events like click, expand combos, open new tabs, close tabs etc..
How is that possible?

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by Fitzcarraldo » Wed Jan 30, 2019 1:31

msdobrescu wrote:
Fitzcarraldo wrote:2. Adjust PulseAudio sampling frequency: Audio in Linux becomes annoying again (continued)
The above works, apparently, bu Firefox became slow in reaction to events like click, expand combos, open new tabs, close tabs etc..
How is that possible?
I have no idea how. However, if Firefox performance is slow, turning off Hardware Acceleration in Firefox often helps. Try that.

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by msdobrescu » Wed Jan 30, 2019 11:54

Is the tuning of PulseAudio more demanding now? Does it require more CPU for some reason? Or bus? Usually, FF acts this way when works hard with the HDD.
Also, I've seen a strange behavior. I am sure it is unrelated to the above. plasma-shell seems to work intensively on disk from time to time and uses the CPU at 8% during that time. I wonder what happens...

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by Fitzcarraldo » Wed Jan 30, 2019 14:22

msdobrescu wrote:Is the tuning of PulseAudio more demanding now? Does it require more CPU for some reason? Or bus?
Not that I know of. That blog post of mine is from 2015, so problems with PulseAudio have always been around.
msdobrescu wrote:Usually, FF acts this way when works hard with the HDD.
Yes and no. As you are no doubt aware, Firefox has become more complex over the years, and had a major rewrite (Firefox Quantum) in 2017 which is supposed to make it faster. Both before and after that rewrite, Hardware Acceleration in Firefox has often been a problem on certain machines and/or with certain GPUs (e.g. Disable Firefox's Hardware Acceleration to Fix Slowness (and More)).

msdobrescu wrote:Also, I've seen a strange behavior. I am sure it is unrelated to the above. plasma-shell seems to work intensively on disk from time to time and uses the CPU at 8% during that time. I wonder what happens...
You can check precisely which processes are accessing the HDD, and by how much, if you install iotop and use the iotop command in a Konsole window:

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# equo install iotop

Code: Select all

# iotop -o
Total DISK READ :               0.00 B/s | Total DISK WRITE :     577.39 K/s
Actual DISK READ:               0.00 B/s | Actual DISK WRITE:      11.40 K/s
  TID  PRIO  USER             DISK READ  DISK WRITE  SWAPIN     IO>    COMMAND
23869 be/4 fitzcarraldo        0.00 B/s  577.39 K/s  0.00 %  0.00 % firefox [BgFileSaver]
I've used KDE since 2007, and it has become more and more sluggish on my machines. Since Plasma 5 was introduced, this has become more and more apparent. It could also have something to do with the GPU, I suppose, as I have had to implement a few 'tricks' to get X Windows, Plasma 5 and KWin to work on my Clevo W230SS laptop (running Gentoo) with NVIDIA Optimus hardware (a PITA, as I mentioned previously). I also run KDE Plasma 5 on an old Compal NBLB2 laptop (running Gentoo), a first-generation Core i7 machine with legacy ATI HD 5650 GPU. KDE has also become much slower on that machine, although I don't have to implement any special tricks on that machine. I believe part of the performance hit is due to Baloo and Akonadi, both of which are also a PITA. You could disable Baloo and Akonadi to see if that helps. Other than that, look through your log files and systemd Journal to see if there are any error messages.

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by msdobrescu » Wed Jan 30, 2019 21:22

Indeed, I guess it is Desktop Search/Plasma Search the source of the high activity. But, if I stop that, will I be able to search on the file system on demand?
I usually look for files by a mask.
Also, it would be great if I get rid of the anything that matches when I search the KDE menu. I need too find only the apps by their name and description there...

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Re: Sound pops and cracks

Post by Fitzcarraldo » Thu Jan 31, 2019 13:14

Usually when I upgrade all the KDE packages these days, Baloo hits the CPU hard and I have to do the following to get it to behave properly:

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$ balooctl status # Check what it is doing.
$ balooctl stop
$ balooctl disable
$ balooctl status # Check what it is doing.
Then I reboot, login again and:

Code: Select all

$ balooctl status # Check what it is doing.
$ balooctl enable
$ balooctl status # Check what it is doing.
That seems to stop Baloo using the CPU too much after an upgrade.

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