I want to assign Skype input and output to my USB-headset while the rest of my laptop uses the internal sound-card. This is an easy task with PulseAudio Volume control (pavucontrol). The only problem I have is every time a call is made I manually have to set the output and input for Skype to my USB-device .

When I hang up, Skype disappears from Volume Control. It reappears again with the next call only this time the default sound-card is selected again. It shouldn’t be hard to let PulseAudio look or the USB-headset is connected when Skype audio comes is before selecting the default. The way to do it is obvious not through Volume Control.




Its not complete but it allows you to push sound to headset..

btw pulse audio will not be doing this by default, the developers do not agree that sound should move devices in this way.

I should add to any one who knows a little python, help would be gratefully accepted to finish this app off..

  • I tried EarCandy in the past but I was hard for me to figure out what the app exactly can do. I know it can mute apps if Skype rings and that is great. But If I make an app profile for let’s say Rhythmbox, I can give it a category like Music Player. But how can tell EarCandy that the Music Player Category has to stream to my Bluetooth Reciever or that Skype (or VoIP category) has to be routed to my USB headset? I wish I knew Python, sadly I don’t because I feel Ubuntu is lacking it this department and a good “sound manangment” tool is needed…
    – Mood
    Feb 8 '11 at 20:00
  • … I like the idea of have a centralized place for the sound options. More so than doing it in the app itself. So I don’t know why the Pulse-Audio developers are against doing it this way. It’s not like they give us an other solution. If I go into Skype to set the proper in/output device it only gives me Pulse-Audio as an option. Do they really expect that people use only one in/output device per system?
    – Mood
    Feb 8 '11 at 20:05

I’m confused. All of a sudden pavucontrol does remember my settings.Now when I plugin my USB headset Skype automatically gets routed to the headset and Rhythmbox gets routed to my Bluetooth receiver. So when I decided to give up on it, it fixed itself…


This is not the whole answer because I have little knowledge about audio redirection.

In "skype > options > notifications" you can set for a script to be executed upon receiving a call. Unfortunately pavucontrol does not accept command-line input. but perhaps alsamixer can be used to redirect audio.

Hope this helps

  • Thanks for the tip, it’s not exactly what I’m looking for though. I gave Skype as an example but because I thought more people must be struggling with the same thing but I have a similar problem when I use Rhythmbox. I have a Bluetooth receiver connected to the stereo. I can route Rhythmbox audio to that receiver and all works well as long I stick to playlist. Once I pause or press next or previous the sound gets routed back to the internal card.
    – Mood
    Feb 4 '11 at 23:18

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