[LAU] Help with configuring a laptop for Linux Audio work

Lorenzo Sutton lorenzofsutton at gmail.com
Mon May 12 07:56:42 UTC 2014

Hi Louigi,

On 12/05/2014 09:43, Louigi Verona wrote:
> Hey guys!
> Recently I've bought a Lenovo IdeaPad B590 laptop. As it is announced as
> an Ubuntu-certified laptop


> I am using Xubuntu 12.04 with kernel 3.8 now.

> 1. All real-time priorities and audio group and such standard stuff set
> up, checked and rechecked by myself and other people at LAC.


> *Problem 1. Xruns.*
> Even if nothing is done on the computer and/or with audio, xruns are
> generated. For instance, since I started writing this letter, JACK was
> on and right now I have an indicator of xruns in qjackctl which says:
> 7(13). Note, no audio programs are open at all. If I do nothing, just
> turn on JACK and leave laptop running, xruns are also generated.

You said you already check "standard stuff".. Did this include turning 
CPU Scaling off and setting _all cores_ to "performance"? In my 
experience this always makes a very big difference in quantity of xruns 
regardless of the sound card. Xubuntu doesn't have anything out of the 
box for that so you'll either have to use cpufrequtils or if intrested 
I've made a simple python-gtk front-end which sits in the tray for 
managing the task if you're interested...

Also switching off (internal) wifi improves the situation here.

> *Problem 2. USB interruptions.*
> This problem occurs when I am using USB soundcard or USB headset. I get
> regular audible interruptions of audio signal. It has no bearing on
> xruns and occurs even outside of JACK, just when I am listening to
> Audacious, for example. I tried switching from PulseAudio to ALSA, same
> result. I though do not remember checking this with YouTube videos, for
> instance, and right now have no usb devices at hand to check.

I get the same problem with using the zoom H4 as a USB device and up to 
now found no solution. I recently got a zoom R8 and with that the issue 
doesn't seem to be present (although I haven't tested it much as USB 
device...) so I assume it *might* be a device problem.

So.. good luck and do share relevant results, as I think some general 
'laptop' info might be interesting regardless of brands.


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