Volume lowers on its own after update to GNOME 3.38

Recently upgraded to GNOME v3.38 and noticed there are frequent random pops coming from my speakers (as if the driver is being reloaded) and the volume randomly resets to about 30%. Both events (the pops and the lowering of the volume) do not always coincide.

Some things I’ve tried:
Re-installed pulseaudio and pulseaudio volume control.
Upgraded to Kernel 5.9.3-1

Saw another post alleging there are some possible bugs with pulseaudio v 13.99. After additional observation, what was happening was my volume was resetting to 30% at regular intervals. It was as if the driver was getting a refresh.

I came across this article: https://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linux-desktop-74/pulseaudio-volume-always-resets-itself-to-less-than-100-a-4175646939/ and commented out the following lines in /etc/pulse/default.pa :

### Automatically restore the volume of streams and devices
#load-module module-device-restore
#load-module module-stream-restore
#load-module module-card-restore

This has prevented those streams from resetting regularly, which has for now, solved my problem.

1 Like

Thanks a lot - you saved my keyboard!

Okay, now it does not lower the volume anymore but mutes the volume totally in random intervals.
Does that happen on your installation too?

Those 3 modules read user card and volume settings from 3 database files in home folder (~/.config/pulse/)

PulseAudio v14.0 release notes state they have a problem with not clearing old card and volume configurations
(PulseAudio v14.0 release notes)

A package update or reinstall does not change files in the home folder, so the 3 database files probably have old user settings causing the problem with audio level change

I suggest you clear the database files using these commands

tdbtool ~/.config/pulse/*card-database.tdb erase
tdbtool ~/.config/pulse/*device-volumes.tdb erase
tdbtool ~/.config/pulse/*stream-volumes.tdb erase

It should then be possible to reactivate the 3 PulseAudio modules so they respect current level settings and remember any user changes

Mhm, thanks for your answer. Unfortunately it does not seem to work.
I cleared the databases as suggested and restarted pulseaudio (pulseaudio -k), but the volume still mutes in random intervals.