A Cry for Help

After having struggled with a problem for a long time, I’m going to direct my cry for help here. Maybe one of you generous people will be able to help me.

The problem is, that no matter how hard I try, I haven’t been able to get my SiS SI7012 audio chipset working, but for most things, this isn’t an issue—I just use a USB sound card, which is plug and play.

But still, I’m having some issues with how ALSA manages my devices. My /proc/asound/cards reports:

0 [SI7012 ]: ICH - SiS SI7012
SiS SI7012 with AD1888 at 0xe800, irq 17
1 [default ]: USB-Audio - C-Media USB Headphone Set
C-Media USB Headphone Set at usb-0000:00:03.1-2, full speed

It says the USB audio card is set as my default card. But still, the SI7012 is card number 0, and it appears that tons of applications (Flash, mpd, mplayer…) seem to choose whichever is card 0, not what is set as default.

This means:

  • I cannot watch Flash films. On YouTube or anywhere else—provided sound is necessary.
  • I can’t use mplayer, my preferred movie player, to play my movies.
  • I cannot use mpd, and absolutely awesome music player to play my music.

I should note that:

  • I have tried adding options snd-intel8x0m index=0 to /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base, (as the ALSA wiki suggests)
  • I am absolutely certain the card works. I can output to it with Banshee, Exaile, VLC and many more
  • The device /is/ set as default.

PLEASE. If you know anything about this issue, have seen it before, or just know how to work your Googlemagic, please leave a note in the comments.

Lasse Havelund on September 16th, 2007

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12 responses to “A Cry for Help”

  1. lpsavoie responded on September 16th, 2007 at 12:35 am | permalink

    You might want to disable the SiS chipset in your BIOS. It would probably help out. At least, that’s how my computer was configured until my sound card blew …

  2. Lasse Havelund responded on September 16th, 2007 at 12:56 am | permalink

    If I recall correctly, I tried that, but my BIOS doesn’t support that. >:/

  3. Jeremy responded on September 16th, 2007 at 9:22 am | permalink

    That’s odd that you even need to use a USB sound card. I had exactly the same sound chipset (SiS SI7012) and it worked beautifully in Ubuntu Dapper and above (including Feisty; and it didn’t work in Breezy). The only problem I had was that it didn’t work out of the box in GoboLinux 013, but a kernel upgrade to 2.6.20 (I think!) fixed it.

  4. Lasse Havelund responded on September 16th, 2007 at 3:38 pm | permalink

    A kernel update? I’m already running 2.6.20-16-generic… That’s weird. Which laptop do you have?

  5. Jeremy responded on September 17th, 2007 at 6:05 am | permalink

    It wasn’t a laptop. It was a hp pavilion [sic] something-or-other with mostly SiS-based stuff on the motherboard.

    Everything worked beautifully (except for the SiS graphics, which didn’t matter, since I used an NVIDIA AGP card instead).

  6. Lasse Havelund responded on September 17th, 2007 at 7:53 am | permalink

    After playing a bit with my mpd config, at least now that works with my USB headset. Also, I’m interested in trying out Gutsy soon; some people seem to be successful with their SI7012 chipsets on Feisty at least. One can only hope it’s improved in Gutsy. >_>.

  7. Sound Cards responded on October 12th, 2007 at 12:08 pm | permalink

    I couldn�t have said it better myself! Thanks a lot!!!

  8. inoxllor responded on April 26th, 2008 at 2:31 pm | permalink

    Same problem with 8.04. Did you find the solution?

  9. Lasse Havelund responded on April 26th, 2008 at 2:40 pm | permalink

    Nope. I haven’t used my USB sound card in ages. :/

  10. Ace Telekinesis responded on May 14th, 2008 at 1:10 am | permalink

    Hi I have an ECS G732 laptop with a SIS7012 sound card and im bashing my ******* brains out trying to solve this. Ive downloaded about 10 different distros and no avail. From what ive gathered on web sites it seems to be related to maybe a kernel problem or an irq conflict. Now I tried noacpi and irqpoll etc and they didnt work, infact they just made my pc hang. I was told on one site to try ubuntu 5.04 because it has a unique kernel revision that corrects the bug, i tried but it just hangs and freezes just before the desktop loads. On the latest versions of ubuntu (7.10 & 8.04) if i select oss the test sound sounds garbled at a fast rate, if i select alsa it sounds garbled at a slower rate. The sound is very simular to when i used to have a SBpro 8bit and games would sometimes choose the wrong irq. Incidently i completly removed the modem in the mini pci port and left it empty and also reset the resource information in the bios. I looked into flashing the bios but another site covered it and it didnt work either. I know i can just use windows but hey come on, i wanna use linux i just wish linux wanted to use my si7012 dammit. A few ppl have said use an external sound card but thats hopeless really considering the extra setup, power drain and that id be forced to use separate speakers/earbuds because i cannot loopback into the internal laptop amp. If anyone can solve this problem and get the sound working then il paypal them the cost of a crate of beer coz im tired of reading unanswered posts of up to 3 years about this chipset.

    Oh one more thing apparently you can force the i810 driver in the place of the 7012 and it works but after many attempts I could never get it to initialise but im not an expert.

    thanks for reading this pls pls pls pls pls someone pls help us all. we really need sound on our pcs. thanks :)

  11. fxaueq responded on September 27th, 2008 at 1:58 pm | permalink


  12. Ace Telekinesis responded on January 27th, 2009 at 10:54 pm | permalink

    Me again here is the deal.

    1. Use windows with standard drivers (easy but crap for linux heads)
    2. Rebuild alsa with the i810 drivers forced (which works but you will ONLY get audio out but no line in or mic)
    3. Download knoppix (i can’t remember which version I tried) but that just seemed to force the i810 drivers and work again but without mic or line in.

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