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Audio issues

Most audio issues on Batocera v31 and below have been fixed with the release of v32. This is because Batocera v32 introduced a brand new sound management layer (Pipewire) to handle most of the audio stack. This article is more here for users on older versions or those really persistent audio issues.

If trying to use HDMI sound on a Radeon GPU, first check that you have enabled the setting in the boot line. If on a Nvidia card, make sure your official drivers are activated.

When that's all clear, first experiment with different settings in MAIN MENUSYSTEM SETTINGSAUDIO PROFILE. You should get sound immediately when exiting back to the MAIN MENU (there is background music playing by default). If you're still not able to get any sound, try also manually setting an AUDIO OUTPUT device (they change with each different profile, you need to exit back to MAIN MENU to update the list). This may take a lot of trial and error, but only needs to be done once.

In v32 and higher, going into Kodi to test various audio outputs live is no longer required. This can all be done from within the EmulationStation MAIN MENUSYSTEM SETTINGS audio settings, then backing out, no reboot required.

In Batocera v31 and lower, only AUDIO OUTPUT is selectable and a reboot is needed for changes to take effect. You can instead quickly test each audio device by using Kodi:

  1. Launch Kodi from the Main Menu, then navigate to Settings (the small gear symbol near the top left corner), System, Audio, Audio output device and test all available Audio output devices listed there. If you navigate with a controller or keyboard through Kodi, you will hear a “click” sound while navigating menus when you have chosen the correct/working Audio output device.
  2. Remember the name/number of this working Audio output device (for example HDMI#0), exit Kodi and go to the Batocera Main Menu > System Settings > Audio and select the Audio output device, which has the same (or at least a similar) name to the one that works in Kodi. Then reboot and you should have working audio.
  3. You can also diagnose some sound issues with the alsamixer sound mixer that is available when pressing [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[F4] (text-mode sound mixer). Make sure that all the outputs are enabled, and they have their volume up. You can return to Batocera with [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[F2].

No longer applicable for v32 and up. EmulationStation can see all audio devices and profiles.

It could be that, for one reason or another, Kodi sees the audio device order differently to EmulationStation. Do the following:

  1. In Kodi, go to back to the Audio output device list.
  2. Now on the device listing, count from the top to the bottom (first device listed is #0, the second is #1, etc.).
  3. Remember which # your working device is (let's use #4 in this example).

Then, edit your system/batocera.conf file from the network share/built-in file manager (F1 on the main menu) like so:

Don't use Windows' Notepad as that will corrupt your batocera.conf file! Use a Unix-respecting editor like Notepad++ or just use Batocera's built-in file manager if you're not sure.

  1. [Ctrl]+[F] and find “audio.device=”, it should be set to your (currently not working) audio device.
  2. Replace the second digit with your audio number. For instance, if it is audio.device=0,3, then according to our example it would be audio.device=0,4. The following text doesn't particularly matter, that's just the label it shows in EmulationStation.
  3. Reboot, and if your audio still isn't working then try audio.device=1,3, then audio.device=2,3 and so on.

No longer applicable for v32 and up. .asoundrc isn't read by Pipewire (there shouldn't be this specific problem in the first place anymore).

If you have sound on EmulationStation, and in the emulators, but you can't hear the sound of the video snapshots, here are several steps that may help you:

  1. First, make sure you have enabled video snaps sounds in the menu Sound SettingsEnable Video Audio
  2. Then, you can try to connect to Batocera through SSH and enter the following command:
wget -O /userdata/system/.asoundrc

This command will create an alsa config file as /userdata/system/.asoundrc. It should fix your video snap sounds for most SBC like Odroid Go Advance, but maybe not on a PC.

On a PC, depending on your hardware configuration, your GPU and audio chipset, it might be trickier to get it working.

First, through SSH, get the list of audio outputs with the command aplay -l. In my setup, I get:

  # aplay -l
  **** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 0: ALC255 Analog [ALC255 Analog]
    Subdevices: 1/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 3: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
    Subdevices: 0/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 7: HDMI 1 [HDMI 1]
    Subdevices: 1/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 8: HDMI 2 [HDMI 2]
    Subdevices: 1/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 9: HDMI 3 [HDMI 3]
    Subdevices: 1/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
  card 0: PCH [HDA Intel PCH], device 10: HDMI 4 [HDMI 4]
    Subdevices: 1/1
    Subdevice #0: subdevice #0

If I want to use the audio output from HDMI0, I can see that it is card 0 and device 3. So, to make audio work on my setup, I need to edit the /userdata/system/.asoundrc file and replace pcm “hw:0,0” with pcm “hw:0,3”, and then save and on reboot, it worked. This method might not work in 100% cases, but it's worth a try.

Worst case, if it doesn't work and you want to go back to the original state, just remove the file /userdata/system/.asoundrc (or \system\.asoundrc from the network share).

First of all, check that the splash.screen.sound value in the batocera.conf file is set to 1.

The following is no longer applicable for v32 and up. Pipewire is used, not Alsa, which has a completely different configuration (there shouldn't be this specific problem in the first place anymore).

If this isn't the cause of the problem, you may need to edit the file containing the splash screen command to add the correct sound device:

  1. Run the command mpv --audio-device=help on your batocera using SSH
  2. Locate the sound device you need to use, for exemple alsa/hdmi:CARD=HDMI,DEV=2
  3. Edit the file /etc/init.d/S03splash
    • find the line /usr/bin/mpv --really-quiet -fs --no-config --vo=drm $mpv_audio $mpv_video "$video" & and add --audio-device=DEVICE where DEVICE is the name you found previously (in our exemple, the line will become /usr/bin/mpv --audio-device=alsa/hdmi:CARD=HDMI,DEV=2 --really-quiet -fs --no-config --vo=drm $mpv_audio $mpv_video "$video" &)
  4. Run the command batocera-save-overlay to keep the changes.
  5. Reboot
  6. When updating batocera, those changes will be lost.

To be amended.

It could be that your audio buffer isn't high enough.

You can change your default audio buffer by adding global.retroarch.audio_buffer=128 to you batocera.conf file. Note that this will only affect Libretro cores.

This is more likely to be a hardware fault. Replug the cable, try a different cable, using a different interface (like 3.5mm analog audio instead of HDMI), etc.

  • audio_issues.1632733743.txt.gz
  • Last modified: 2 years ago
  • by atari