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I have been searching for a way to utilize multiple sound cards to play the same audio at the same time. My laptop has Ubuntu 11.10 x64 (3.0.0-12) w. ALSA 1.0.24. I have a pair of USB speakers that I have purchased and would like to be able to use them as well as my internal speakers.

The internal speakers and USB speakers are two separate soundcards:

aplay -l
**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: Intel [HDA Intel], device 0: ALC275 Analog [ALC275 Analog]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: Intel [HDA Intel], device 1: ALC275 Digital [ALC275 Digital]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 3: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 7: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 8: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 9: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 2: AUDIO [USB  AUDIO], device 0: USB Audio [USB Audio]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0

I would like to use cards 0 and 2 (Intel and USB) I was hoping that there would be a way to create a link between the two, so that it's a system-level fix, versus having to set up each application to handle it correctly.

I am not sure if ALSA can handle this, and if not, if there would be a solution within my Linux environment to solve my problem.

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well when you re using pulseaudio (which is default in ubuntu) you should be able to select the simultaneous output in the pulseaudio volume control. For me selecting simultaneous causes laggs when playing videos. Maybe this is solved, didnt try for long. –  Michael K Nov 4 '11 at 17:36
    
Thank you very much. I installed pavucontrol and now I can see how I can "Lock" (link) cards together. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be working correctly. Both of the channels are linked, and I can select either of them from pavucontrol's application list, but only one will play at a time. Any further suggestions? –  earthmeLon Nov 4 '11 at 17:49
    
Yes there was a way, but I have to look it up... –  Michael K Nov 4 '11 at 18:09
1  
See also here –  Takkat Nov 4 '11 at 22:18
    
paprefs allows one two link all soundcards together. –  earthmeLon Jan 14 '13 at 14:35

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

You can setup simultaneous output using the tool paprefs. Install it using:

sudo apt-get indstall paprefs

and then run it using

paprefs &
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