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When I plug in my headphones I get the following Output Devices in pavucontrol:

Speakers
Analog Output
Headphones (unplugged)

Choosing Speakers sends output to Speakers+Headphones.

Choosing Analog Output or Headphones (unplugged) send output to Headphones only.

If I unplug the headphones I get:

Speakers (unavailable)
Analog Output
Headphones (plugged in)

No matter what I choose I get no audio.

It seems PulseAudio is confused by my headphones: Unplugging my headphones does not cause my speakers to vanish into thin air.

How can I tell PulseAudio:

  • My speakers are here to stay. They will never be unavailable.
  • My headphones are plugged in when you think they are not and vice versa.

Output from pulseaudio -vvvv when unplugging headphones:

D: [pulseaudio] module-alsa-card.c: Jack 'Front Mic Jack' is now unplugged
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-input-microphone-front to status no
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-input-microphone-internal to status unknown
D: [pulseaudio] core-subscribe.c: Dropped redundant event due to change event.
D: [pulseaudio] module-alsa-card.c: Jack 'Front Headphone Jack' is now plugged in
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-output-speaker to status no
D: [pulseaudio] core-subscribe.c: Dropped redundant event due to change event.
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-output-headphones to status yes
D: [pulseaudio] core-subscribe.c: Dropped redundant event due to change event.

When plugging in headphones:

D: [pulseaudio] module-alsa-card.c: Jack 'Front Mic Jack' is now plugged in
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-input-microphone-front to status yes
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-input-microphone-internal to status no
D: [pulseaudio] core-subscribe.c: Dropped redundant event due to change event.
D: [pulseaudio] module-alsa-card.c: Jack 'Front Headphone Jack' is now unplugged
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-output-speaker to status unknown
D: [pulseaudio] device-port.c: Setting port analog-output-headphones to status no
D: [pulseaudio] core-subscribe.c: Dropped redundant event due to change event.

The above leads me to believe that there is missing a "not" somewhere in 'module-alsa-card.c' and that it somehow feels the headphone port is also a mic port.

  • You'll want to map the channels to the correct i/o plugs, I think. I'm pretty sure this is what I used to do rear/front swaps for surround... At a lower level you may need to do something along the same lines for ALSA. You won't get an answer here from me - I consider the whole computer/A/V frontier a magical world of wonder and am just happy to sometimes get a glimpse - I never understand it, though. – mikeserv Jul 5 '15 at 17:38
  • It looks like the headphone jack sense signal doesn't work the way the driver expects, but just the opposite way. This would be a pretty typical hardware-model-specific quirk: see the first post of this thread in the Ubuntu Forums: there is a long list of system models that have needed non-default audio configuration. If your model is not one of those, you might try the options intended for other models from the same manufacturer. – telcoM Jun 6 '18 at 11:28

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