Questions about surround sound & ALSA

Questions about Wine on Linux
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Questions about surround sound & ALSA

Post by krumpf » Sun Apr 18, 2021 9:21 am


I've been trying to get surround sound (5.1) to work with games through Wine, with no success so far.

I'm using only Alsa only (no PulseAudio installed), and got a .asoundrc file that exposes my sound card as a multichannel card with software mixing (the default surround40/51/71/etc.. available from alsa don't allow more than 1 source to use the sound card)

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pcm.!default {
	type plug
	slave.pcm "dmix6Ch"
pcm.dmix6Ch {
	type dmix
	ipc_key 8462
	slave {
		pcm "hw:0"
		channels 6
		period_size 1024
In winecfg, my sound card appears in the Output device list, both as Multichannel card (for analog outputs I think) and as Digital card. (I do not use the Nvidia HMDI outputs). I usually leave it on (system default), which should use the settings in my asoundrc
Winecfg speaker configuration is set to 5.1 Surround for both Out:default and Out:Multichannel

I did some testing

Code: Select all

Winecfg sound test, with winecfg speaker config on 5.1

empty .asoundrc file
	system default  ->	no sound from rear speakers
	out: default  ->	no sound from rear speakers
	Multichannel  ->	no sound from rear speakers

asoundrc with 6 channels dmix
	system default  ->	sound from rear speakers
	out: default  ->	sound from rear speakers
	Multichannel  ->	no sound from rear speakers
So, my asoundrc settings works, allowing Wine to detect 6 available channels on the sound card (Weird the Multichannel doesn't work, but I suppose in that case Wine just use the first available alsa device and doesn't bother checking if more than 2 channels are available despite the speaker config set on 5.1 - is that a bug ?)

Wine officially supports surround sound for DirectSound, but most recent games either use FMOD or Xaudio afaik, DirectSound is deprecated since Microsoft changed the sound layers in Win Vista.

My issue comes from games, where sound desperately sticks to stereo output, no matter what winecfg settings are. I've been trying with Crysis, and Secret world Legends, both got 5.1 support in their options, and no sound comes from the central/rear speakers.

So am I doing something wrong ? Or is the surround sound actually just supported for DirectSound ?
Thanks for answers :)

P.S.: Please do not tell me to install pulseaudio to upmix 2.0 -> 5.1, I can do that with alsa, and that's not the surround I'm looking for.

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