In Pulseaudio Volume Control in the output devices tab you can see the volume of the currently playing audio. Is there any way I can output this to use in my own applications?

1 Answer 1


Every sink in pulseaudio has a corresponding source that ends in monitor. Try:

pacmd list-sinks | grep name:

pacmd list-sources | grep name:

and compare the names. Pulseaudio Volume Control connects to all of these and uses them to display the volume of the currently playing audio. You can do the same from your own programs, or with any existing program using pulseaudio, and of course you get to monitor the actual data of what's currently playing, not just the volume. There are different ways to compute a numerical volume value from this data, you must choose one.

  • you said that Pulseaudio Volume Control connects to the source to get the volume, how would I do that?
    – user197413
    Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 12:29
  • In your self-written program? Read the pulseaudio docs. Using other software written to use pulseaudio? Specify the source, or move it from another source to a monitor source using pavucontrol or pacmd.
    – dirkt
    Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 6:25

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