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I just updated from Linux Mint (Mate, 64 bit) 18.3 to 19.1. It was a clean install from the DVD, formatted drive.

The sound, both in Firefox (youtube videos, etc) and from mp3 and flac files in the media player all sound like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJCuJL9T7gs, only not as cool and more distorted.

cat /proc/asound/cards
 0 [XFi            ]: SB-XFi - Creative X-Fi
                      Creative X-Fi 20K2 SB0880
 1 [SB             ]: HDA-Intel - HDA ATI SB
                      HDA ATI SB at 0xfe400000 irq 16
 2 [NVidia         ]: HDA-Intel - HDA NVidia
                      HDA NVidia at 0xfe080000 irq 46

I'm using the proprietary nVidia drivers, which are required for my other software. Although I'm using the Creative card for sound and don't use the HDMI sound function from the nVidia card. So I don't know if the graphics drivers can screw up the sound card, but this sound card worked just fine on the previous Mint (18.3).

How can I fix this?

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