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When I plug in headphones, my speakers mute, but nothing comes from the headphones. Also, there is a weird red light coming from my headphone jack. I am on a Macbook from late 2007, and have Ubuntu 11.10. Thanks!

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I have the same problem since a week ago, on a Dell Studio XPS, also on 11.10. In the past I usually fixed it by adding

options snd-hda-intel model=dell-eq or options snd-hda-intel model=dell-m6

to /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf

but it's not working anymore.

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Well, all of a sudden it's working, after doing the DKMS below and the options snd-hda-intel model=dell-m6 above, for the hundredth time. Go figure. – Eugenio Perea Feb 27 '12 at 0:22
First option solved this for my Dell studio XPS Studio 1647 – Kyle Brandt Mar 11 '12 at 0:29

This is because the headphone output is controlled by the 'Speaker 1' volume, which is muted by default. To solve this, install alsamixergui and enable the 'Speaker 1' volume.

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I have a LG E500 with Ubuntu 11.10, I had normal sound on speakers, but when plug in headphones they mute, and to turn on sound I had to mute and unmute at the sound menu. So I found this easy solution,just installing a .deb package. I hope that it helps you!


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Just to cover all your bases, have you checked the output volume for your headphone jack? In a terminal run alsamixer. Use left/right arrow keys to scroll through the channels, up/down to adjust the levels.

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