Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a problem trying to use my Senheisser USB headset with Skype, if I set my default output in my Sound Preferences to use my USB headset I hear everything in my PC through them including Skype calls, no problem here, the issue is that I'd like to hear skype class trough my headset while keeping the rest of my audio trough my speakes, is this possible? I remember doing it on Windows but there as soon as I plugged my headset Skyped prompted me with a message asking me if I wanted to switch to them.

I see there's a option in skype within Sound Devices, but all it says is PulseAudio server (local) in all Microphone, Speakers and Ringing select boxes with no other option.

I'm using ubuntu 10.10, and it is a rather fresh install. Is it possible to do this?

Thanks in advance!

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Windows and Linux are different. There is no way in Linux to specifically set one application to output from one device while having another application output from another device. The functionality just does not exist in Ubuntu at this time.

share|improve this answer
I see that's sad to know though :( – javiervd Apr 20 '11 at 17:38
I +1'd this and then remembered... that's not true... You can do that it's just not easy. – RolandiXor Jun 28 '11 at 19:29
@Roland so post an answer which actually includes your "This is extremely difficult, but here's a method: <method>" answer. And ask someone to -1 the answer xD And generally speaking, users want an easy "can I click this one thing to fix it?" method, which doesn't exist in this case. – Thomas Ward Jun 28 '11 at 19:31
@Phoenix I know, I just don't remember off hand the complete path to do it. If I remember this I will post an answer :). – RolandiXor Jun 28 '11 at 19:35
@RolandiXor I tought it was a good idea to add another question and answer it. Is it just me, or do we really have a lot these audio questions scattered all over the site with no canonical answer? – LiveWireBT Apr 16 '14 at 15:28

As far as I know PulseAudio is an audio server with the ability to route sound in the way you want.

Install PulseAudio Volume Control to be able to change where inputs and outputs go.

sudo apt-get install pavucontrol

In this manner I have routed Skype output to my headset only and my mic solely into Skype, Whilst having everything else running through my PC speakers.

share|improve this answer
Thanks. This just saved me. – Jarco Aug 6 '13 at 20:30

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.