I have Windows 7 installed, and headphones work perfectly. Few days ago, I installed Arch Linux along with Win7. This issue appears with gnome/xfce4/openbox. Perhaps it is not related to desktop environment

My headphones work fine under Arch Linux but:

  1. When I turn to Win7 from Arch Linux, headphones stop working.
  2. When I reboot Win7 twice, headphone works.
  3. When I use halt -p, from Arch Linux and reboot to Win7, headphone works fine.

I am using plain headphones(not usb headphone). Here is my device

00:1b.0 Audio device [0403]: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset High Definition Audio [8086:3b56] (rev 05)

01:00.1 Audio device [0403]: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Redwood HDMI Audio [Radeon HD 5000 Series] [1002:aa60]
  • Acer 4820T, HDA-Intel - HD-Audio Generic
    – jilen
    Commented Apr 6, 2013 at 8:50
  • Are you using a USB headphone, or just a plain headphone that is connected via TRS phone connector to your sound card/mainboard? If it's the latter, it's not your headphone that is not working, but the sound card itself. Commented Sep 21, 2013 at 13:24
  • Also, please post the output of lcpci -nn so we know exactly what type of sound card you are using. If you are using a USB headphone, please post the output of lsusb. Commented Sep 21, 2013 at 13:25
  • @MartinvonWittich I add hardware info to the question, could you just have a look at that?
    – jilen
    Commented Sep 21, 2013 at 16:05
  • What desktop environment? Which sound subsystem are you using?
    – strugee
    Commented Sep 21, 2013 at 17:57

2 Answers 2


I can not say for sure what the problem is but after doing a little research I do have some suggestions:

No-1. It could be that you're using the wrong default audio device as it's probably defaulting to HDMI. Disable HDMI audio or just set another default device.

No-2. It could be you are using the wrong sound codec in the modprobe conf. You might find something about that here → https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?pid=1273556#p1273556 .

No-3. Check to see if anything is muted. Try using alsamixer to unmute everything.

No-4. Try installing OSS = "Open Sound System". I know nothing much about it but have read other people with same type of problem say they fixed it with this. More info on OSS.

Here → http://www.opensound.com/


Same thing was happening to me until I found out what was the problem. Open your Audio Mixer and click the Select Controls button. There you will find several options but there is one that says Auto-Mute Mode. Check that and you will have a new tab where you can disable the auto-mute mode.

  • What does the audio mixer actually means ? Windows mixer or gnome mixer or alsa mixer or something else ?
    – jilen
    Commented Jan 12, 2014 at 12:21
  • 1
    @jilen Since the problem occurs in Windows, probably the Windows Audio Mixer :) Commented Oct 18, 2014 at 9:51

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