Distorted speakers audio with snd_hda_intel on Samsung Galaxy Book Flex (NT950QCG-X716)

I am having a distorted metallic audio using Manjaro.
Checking alsa-info shows that Manjaro is loading the snd_hda_intel ALSA module.
I had the same problem on Linux Mint, but when snd_soc_skl_hda_dsp ALSA module is loaded the sound is clean.

How can I get Manjaro to load snd_soc_skl_hda_dsp?

maybe if you put the following in /etc/modprobe.d/sof.conf - create that file if doesn’t exist :

options snd slots=snd_soc_skl_hda_dsp

Restart the system after that and report back.

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After doing this and rebooting I get no sound at all.
alsamixer F6 selection still shows HDA Intel PCH but no sof-hda-dsp as I get in Mint.
Do you want me to run some commands first to gather more information about my system first perhaps? Will that help?

Maybe you have to add blacklist snd-hda-intel inside /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf

Generally this issue seems to be present at X1 Carbon 7th Gen laptops, but yours is a Samsung. Probably you need the pulseaudio-git ?

I’ll have to read more about, but maybe we can ping @nikgnomic for a more in depth understanding of the sound system in linux and particularities i’m not aware about. :slight_smile:

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Check the dB gain in alsamixer and make sure it doesn’t go over 0 dB.

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Both of the alsa-project links appear to relate to Linux Mint and not Manjaro
Mint has kernel v5.4 which does not support the internal digital mic, so it is disabled with a modprobe option ‘snd_hda_intel: dmic_detect=0’

If your Manjaro install is using v5.9 kernel it should support the internal dmic and a modprobe option should not be needed. (but there is a different modprobe option available if plan A does not work)

Pulseaudio v13.99.3 was included in [Stable Update] 2020-11-04 which has the patches for Sound Open Firmware drivers

If system is still trying to use ‘snd_hda_intel’ driver it may just be missing sof-firmware
so I suggest you try installing this package

pamac install sof-firmware

But the driver is not likely to be causing audio distortion.
so you should check level in ALSA as suggested.
and check PulseAudio levels are not over 100% too

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Thanks, guys.
I managed to solve this at last. Pfewwwww, getting the speakers to work on this laptop and then work without distortions have been a long long journey.
The gain was below 0, so not an issue with this. I also already had the latest sof-firmware and Pulseaudio installed. The problem is quite likely snd_hda_intel being loaded instead of snd_soc_skl_hda_dsp. As you know, ubuntu has a modified kernel (different than mainline) that probably helped getting snd_soc_skl_hda_dsp to load on their 5.4.
It is important to note that in order to get the speakers to produce audio, we must currently run a long list of hda-verb commands that I hope will be implemented into the kernel very soon, I wish I knew how to do that myself, but unfortunately I am still a n00b, so maybe you can help with submitting such a kernel patch. :slight_smile:
I managed to fix it by combining multiple solutions. I will post a tutorial shortly in hope it will help others with the same or similar issue.
Thanks again x.

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Here is the full guide. :slight_smile:

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