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My speakers use a digital input, but my headphones use an analog input. I have them both plugged in, and when I want to use the headphones I just turn off the speakers and switch on the headphones. I know that simultaneous output on digital and analog is supported by the hardware, because it worked fine in Windows XP. But on Ubuntu, I seem to only get one at a time, depending on which setting is selected in the combo box located at System -> Preferences -> Sound -> Hardware.

How can I get simultaneous analog and digital output without having to switch the profile every time? I'm on Ubuntu 11.04 and it's an HDA Intel chip.

enter image description here

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up vote 10 down vote accepted

We have the optional application paprefs Install paprefs that allows to install a virtual output device to pulseaudio. This enables simultaneous output to all attached sound cards/devices:


The additionally created audio output device for simultaneous output may be selected in the "Output" tab from pulseaudio sound preferences menu:

enter image description here

From the command line we can also load the device for simultaneous output without having to run paprefs by

pacmd load-module module-combine-sink
# pacmd load-module module-combine # for PulseAudio < 1.0

Put this line (without pacmd) in your /etc/pulse/ to load this device at startup.

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great , it worked ! – wim Aug 17 '11 at 12:41
Do you know how to do this without installing this application? I'm guessing it should be only a single command line operation. – l0b0 Dec 14 '11 at 9:53
@l0b0: see edit for this. – Takkat Dec 14 '11 at 21:56

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