When I press the volume up/down keys on my keyboard, the volume changes too much. How can I make the step size smaller so that I have finer control?
From this bug-report it appears the volume-step key disappeared in 11.10 and has not (as yet) reappeared.
Thus, there isn't a simple straightforward configuration change that you can make to reduce the volume step.
Post #18 in the link gives an interesting workaround which involves using
However I couldn't get it to work - thus my take on the solution is based upon that post.
With this solution, the default volume step will be reduced to two-percent steps.
Using your favourite text editor, create a file in your home folder called
Then edit the file
Logout and login
You can do this with CompizConfig Settings Manager. Use the command
Now open the CompizConfig Settings Manager and go to Commands in the General section. Check the Enable commands checkbox to the right. In the Commands tab, enter the following two commands separately as two commands:
Assign two keyboard shortcuts for the commands in the Key bindings tab. I use the Super+[ and Super+] combination. Now close the CompizConfig Settings Manager and this should work.
I'm not sure if you can assign the commands to the in-built volume controllers of the computer though.
I just discovered that
Much more elegant, and it works with the OSD volume notifications.
12.04 (and possibly 11.10)
If you want to control the pulseaudio volume directly rather than go the ALSA route, you can use the following script. While it should also be possible to control the volume via DBUS as detailed in this Stackoverflow answer, I however could not find a way to make this work in Ubuntu 12.04.
As is said in the script itself, it uses this Stackoverflow answer on how to programmatically change volume in Ubuntu and expands the idea into a script which takes the volume change as a command line argument and also shows an OSD notification. I have tried to model it as closely as possible to the default Ubuntu (12.04) behavior.
The script takes volume changes as either an absolute or relative number or percent value. So for instance:
It is also quite liberally commented in the hopes that it is useful for further tweaking.
Use your favorite text editor to create a file in your home folder (or anywhere else really - just remember the path) called
Give each one a name and as command enter something like this:
After that click on the right side of each entry to set a key combination or multimedia key. If the desired combination or key is already assigned to another shortcut, the program will ask if you want to reassign it.
This easy solution works for (at least) 12.04 and does not require CCSM.
You will not have on-screen volume bar action when you use the keyboard shortcuts, but you will have however fine-grained volume control as you wish.
After this, when you use your keyboard volume controls you should have whatever volume increments you specified. You can always go back to the original behavior by disabling your custom shortcuts and re-enabling the premade ones in the "Sound and Media" category.
Ubuntu 14.04 / 15.04 / 15.10
I finally have a proper solution for Trusty, Vivid, and Wily users. Rather than using a bunch of hacks or a script, I decided to fix the problem in the source code. I applied this patch to gnome-settings-daemon and unity-settings-daemon (some trivial modifications were made to the patch).
I have uploaded the packages to a PPA:
Once you've added the PPA, run:
You will need to restart after installation completes. Once the packages have been upgraded, you can use the
(The default value is 6.)
Now when you press the volume keys, the volume will change in increments of 2: