Sounds works in Dragon Player but not Kaffeine

Duncan 1i5t5.duncan at
Sun Apr 3 06:33:30 BST 2011

Boyd Stephen Smith Jr. posted on Sat, 02 Apr 2011 19:29:13 -0500 as

> Sound works in Dragon Player, but not Kaffeine.  I'd prefer to use
> Kaffeine, because I have a playlist of files I'd like to play on my
> second monitor while I play with Haskell on my primary monitor.  I don't
> want to have to fiddle with the video player after each video.
> I'm on Linux, specifically Debian Squeeze.  Within those constraints,
> the system is up-to-date.
> Kaffeine identifies as:
> Kaffeine Version 1.0 Using KDE Development Platform 4.4.5 (KDE 4.4.5)
> Dragon Player identifies as:
> Dragon Player Version 2.0 Using KDE Development Platform 4.4.5 (KDE
> 4.4.5)
> KDE identifies as:
> KDE - Be Free!
> Platform Version 4.4.5 (KDE 4.4.5)
> Kaffeine output when run from the command-line:
> $ kaffeine --nofork kaffeine(37797)/kdecore (services)
> KMimeTypeFactory::parseMagic: Now parsing "/usr/share/mime/magic"
> kaffeine(37797)/kdecore (services) KMimeTypeFactory::parseMagic: Now
> parsing "/home/bss/.local/share/mime/magic"
> I've tried removing .kde/share/apps/kaffeine and
> .kde/share/config/kaffeinerc to no effect.  I repeated the removal,
> logged out/in of KDE, and tried Kaffeine, again to no effect.
> KMix and ALSAMixer agree on settings, with nothing that looks important
> muted.  Also, event sounds and Amarok play fine as well.
> Any tips?  At this point, I'm thinking I need to dabble in to Debian
> testing or unstable at least for Kaffeine, but I'd prefer not to.

FWIW, along about kde 4.2.4 when I switched to kde4, I gave up on kaffeine 
for kde4 as too featureless compared to the kde3 version, which I really 
liked.  I now use smplayer, a qt4 app that integrates well with kde but 
doesn't require it.  It seems to have all the features kaffeine for kde3 
did.  To be fair, that was while kaffeine for kde4 was still in beta, but 
when kde has dropped kde3 support, even when kde4 and related apps clearly 
aren't yet ready (I considered kde4 finally ready with 4.5.4 or so, but 
that left a gap of no properly usable kde from the time they stopped 
supporting kde3, despite an earlier claim that support would be there as 
long as there were users, until 4.5, a support... and credibility... gap 
of a year and a half), what is one supposed to do?  And I'm reasonably 
happy with smplayer on my main machine (Radeon hd4650 graphics) and vlc on 
my netbook (Intel GMA450 graphics, smplayer sometimes refuses to display 
video unless I repeatedly reload the video), so left kaffeine behind.

As I said, smplayer's got the same rich set of advanced features that 
kaffeine for kde3 did.  The biggest difference is that kaffeine is xinelib 
based while smplayer is as one might guess, mplayer based.  (The netbook 
doesn't need the full-features and VLC's fine, there.)

If you prefer to stay with kaffeine... in the order I thought of them, NOT 
necessarily the order I'd recommend trying them...

* Do you use pulse-audio?  I never have, but I suspect its settings might 
be messed up if you use it. Of course I can't help you with it as I've not 
used it.

* You've checked kaffeine to ensure that it's not muted, and that the 
volume is reasonably high in kaffeine itself, right?

* In the phonon kcontrol (wrongly known as system-settings in kde4, 
wrongly, as it's mostly kde-specific user-specific settings that with 
certain exceptions, have little to do with global system settings, so why 
not continue using the FAR more accurate kde3 name kcontrol?) panel, what 
backend are you using?  YMMV as they say, but here and for a number of 
others that have posted with phonon-related issues, phonon-vlc has 
functioned FAR better for me than the default phonon-xine.  You might try 
it, ESPECIALLY if you have a dialog popping up on boot or somewhat 
randomly, complaining about missing audio devices and asking if you want 
to delete them -- that's a phonon-xine backend bug that at least here, 
TOTALLY disappeared when I switched to phonon-vlc.  Of course that'll 
bring in vlc as a dependency...  And of course you can switch back to 
phonon-xine if you decide to.  (Some distros may make the gstreamer backend 
default, especially if they default to gnome and thus have it installed on 
most systems.  I've never tried that backend, but I read a blog post from 
the phonon devs saying phonon-xine was basically deprecated, and favoring 
phonon-vlc.  I'd consider phonon-gstreamer somewhere in the middle.)

* Still in phonon's kcontrol panel, you may want to take one of the 
settings that's known working and hit apply device list to (might be 
worded slightly differently in 4.4)... and select everything.  It's 
possible that kaffeine and dragonplayer use different output role settings 
and they're set different.

* IDR what sort of audio output selection kaffeine had and it may have 
changed since the beta I used, but depending on your sound hardware and 
ALSA setup, it's not uncommon for only one app to be able to directly 
access audio at a time.  Obviously, you have kde/phonon using it, whatever 
the backend.  That may lockout kaffeine if it's trying to use ALSA 
directly, thus explaining your lack of sound.  In that case, EITHER set 
kaffeine to use phonon, OR manually switch phonon to the dummy driver 
(what it's called using the vlc backend, IDR what the xine backend calls 
it or if it has such a thing) while you're trying to use kaffeine, so 
phonon will release its device locks, thus allowing kaffeine access to 
them.  (Obviously, I'd set kaffeine to run thru phonon if possible, as 
arranging for only one audio app to access the sound hardware at once is a 
hugely inconvenient hack... tho one many people have been forced to resort 
to over the years.)

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

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