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"line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

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Community Veteran
Posts: 19,165
Thanks: 2,212
Fixes: 29
Registered: ‎06-11-2007

"line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

Many of you know, that I am keen on Morse Code, and have a program that I can send and receive Morse, over the internet

I can do this either by watching it "decode" on to the screen, or I can copy by ear, typing or writing down, as I wish.

However, there are many "digital" forms of communication used by radio hams, and some commercial stations, and the Navies of the world, including Weather Fax, that can be decoded, using a short wave communications receiver, properly tuned, and feeding the sound into the computer/laptop via the mic or line input socket.

This works very well, and has done for the past, for I don`t know how long,.... when I was using Windows....however,   recently, I have converted to using Linux Mint 19.1 as my operating system... and there is a problem.... well ,... a couple, that need to be sorted.

The first one, is that on this laptop.... there is only one socket for Headphones.... however, it can double up as a Mic input by resetting the "sound preferences" or the "volume control" applet.

That SHOULD work....   however,..... it does not work the way I was using it before... i.e via the mic input LINE connected to the radio output.

 

The only way I can get the decoding program (s )  to work , is to have my head phones located somewhere near the "internal mic" , so that it pics up the audio sound from them and passes that as the "input"...  

 

Trouble is,....this is not a happy situation, because it needs to be at such a high volume level, it drowns out  the .t.v. the missus is watching across the room...( and obviously, is very annoying )..

the noises these digital communications make, are not music to her ears... more like screaming kids and the next door neighbour`s dog constantly barking.......................telling them to "shut up" doesn`t work ! !

 

So... what I want to know... is how do I get the LINE output    via the Line input cable, in the single socket, to make the MIC take the signal, rather than the "internal mic" on the top of the laptop screen ( or wherever it is ! ) ..

Note.... on the task bar it does show a Mic and Speaker icon, when the

This pic shows,  in the top part  "twin peaks" of sound wave... correctly tuned  to a Radio Teletype signal coming from the Dutch Naval Radio Station, via my radio, and via my headphones ( or radio speaker ) feeding into the program via the "internal mic" on the laptop screen

Screenshot rtty 001.png

 

As you can see, the text on the lower part is perfect.. and what I would expect for that particular signal....

 

This next pic shows the blue signal trace has "collapsed"  due to me removing the phones from the output, ( so no audio input to the internal mic) ... and expecting the "Line Input" from the radio, to use  the selected "Microphone" input on the sound preferences, to take effect...

However... as you can see, there is a load of garbled letters , indicating a loss of signal, to the decoding program .

Screenshot rtty 002.png

 

and finally .... reverting back to the audio being delivered to the "internal mic" again..... it now shows a perfect copy as before...

 

Screenshot rtty 003.png

 

I have tried all sorts of combinations of settings on the Sound Preferences...... to no avail...only way it decodes is via the headphones as previously mentioned. 

 

 

I have just had a look at the "help" section on another program that can also decode Radio Teletype signals.. 

On the left of the pic below... is the "help" view of the "sound card tab"  on the right of the pic, is a view of MY soundcard tab..

 

Interestingly,... the left side "Reception" ....  actually shows a "Line (microHAM Codec)   ( bear in mind this is a "windows type program running under WINE) .

 

I do not know whether the "sound card" (driver???)   that is on the Dell Inspiron 5558  is being used, ( it is a Realtek one I think ) ... of if the "pulse audio" thing, is lacking in the "line" being "activated" when a mic or line is plugged in to the single "multi-purpose" socket.

 

Checking with "Driver Manager"   ( after running an "update"  on that window... it showed a blank space, at the bottom it said " No proprietry drivers are in use"  So , where does that leave me now  ? ? ?

5 REPLIES 5
VileReynard
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Posts: 11,985
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Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: "line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

Does the actual line-in work with any less exotic connections?

For example, Mint allows you to load the Skype package so if you have an external microphone you could try this out.

Have to say, that when I used to use Skype that I tended to use USB microphones.

 

Would your program accept input from USB - perhaps via a converter?

The only laptop I have that includes provision for an external microphone input is so old that it doesn't have a built-in microphone!

 


Checking with "Driver Manager"   ( after running an "update"  on that window... it showed a blank space, at the bottom it said " No proprietry drivers are in use"  So , where does that leave me now  ? ? ?


This simply means that no alternative proprietary drivers are known - if there were you could select one to see if it performs better. This is generally relevant for some wifi connections.

"In The Beginning Was The Word, And The Word Was Aardvark."

Community Veteran
Posts: 19,165
Thanks: 2,212
Fixes: 29
Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Re: "line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

@VileReynard  I haven`t got an "external mic" that I can "test" the mic input with....

I have a feeling that it HAS worked for me before... but I`m not 100% sure on that...

I will have another look at this tomorrow, when I have a bit more time...

I don`t think that any of my progs that I use for this kind of stuff, will accept a usb input... as it has to come direct from the output line of the radio...

Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: "line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

Isn't the solution to this as simple as one of these? With this you connect a Male to Male 3.5mm lead from the Receiver to the Mic Line and your headphones to the other. Or have I missed something.

VileReynard
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Posts: 11,985
Thanks: 501
Fixes: 17
Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: "line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

I have a PM that says this is a solved problem. 😎

"In The Beginning Was The Word, And The Word Was Aardvark."

Community Veteran
Posts: 19,165
Thanks: 2,212
Fixes: 29
Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Re: "line in" ( sound input ) problem on Linux Mint 19.1

Fix

I did ask the mods to remove this diatribe of misdirection,.....but they refused, on the grounds that it MAY help someone else, who reads it....

 

Suffice it to say... I fixed it... !  

 

( Shudda gon tu Speksavers ) ( embarrassed chinaman emoticon + guffawing chinaman emoticon )