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Thread: Hardware vs. software volume control on laptops

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala

    Hardware vs. software volume control on laptops


    I've searched around quite a bit and am frustratingly close to figuring this out, but can't get the final step. I have a ThinkPad T400 running jaunty.

    There appears to be both a hardware and a software setting for the volume. I noticed that if I boot into Windows XP, I can get the speakers to play a lot louder. This is despite the fact that I have turned all the volumes up that I can find on the system (pretty much all the devices and options in "Volume Control", plus the volume on whatever program I'm using). By searching around, I found that there is a hardware volume on the ThinkPad that I can get the status of with:

    cat /proc/acpi/ibm/volume
    which returns

    level:		7
    mute:		off
    commands:	up, down, mute
    commands:	level <level> (<level> is 0-15)
    So it seems to be that there is a volume control that is stuck at 7, and can go as high as 15. It seems from the above output that there is some command I can type to make it change: level 10, or volume 10, or something. I can't figure out what this can be.

    (Note that most of what I know about this problem comes from this thread; however, I don't have the same problem that user was having with coupling of the hardware and software drivers.)

    I would appreciate any help -- if anyone knows the commands or procedure to change that hardware volume.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal

    Re: Hardware vs. software volume control on laptops

    I would also like to know how to get the T400 a bit louder. This would be greatly appreciated if someone could figure this out and possibly post it on!

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