[RESPONDED] Ubuntu sound improvements?

Has anyone else found that the sound of the 13th gen framework 13 is quite poor on Ubuntu? I don’t have Windows installed to compare, but the sound quality is very ‘tinny’ compared even against mobile devices like my Pixel 4.

I have read that sometimes Ubuntu can need additional configuration to improve the sound quality, so I’m wondering if there is a guide, or whether I have a fault?

I’d be interested in other users’ experiences. I’m not expecting outstanding quality but I can’t imagine many people would be happy with the sound I’m getting currently.

Ubuntu 22.04.2 LTS

can you specify what you exactly mean by sound ?

If you are talking about the speakers, I can say that yes, compared even to a lot of phone speakers they are not great. And of course they do not come close to anything like a Macbook, even with the upgraded 80dB speaker kit (which I have installed). I do not usually use them only for some Youtube content, Zoom calls etc. They are enough for that and I have not spent any time manually tuning them.

If you are talking about the 3.5mm audio jack, I cannot really complain. I have a good quality headset (no high impedance) and I cannot complain about the sound. Loudness is appropriate and I apply my usual fine tuning & am very happy.

At work I usually use bluetooth earbuds (Sony WF-1000MX) and I actually have the feeling that they sound better on ubuntu than on Android (might be because I have actually done some fine tuning there to adjust it to my preferences).

The FW speakers definitely benefit from an equalizer – “EasyEffects” is very well-integrated (at least on Fedora/Gnome) and was very easy to set up. I used the KieranEQ preset and that improves sound quality enough for me to be satisfied – an iPhone mini is still better in quality and volume, though.
The main thing the preset does is boost mid-high region, providing a remedy to the otherwise “muddled”/“confined” sound. Perhaps that’s what you mean by “tinny”, so it’s definitely worth a shot.
You can set activation/deactivation triggers in EasyEffects, so you can have the equalizer deactivate for HDMIout. Once configured EasyEffects has been surprisingly stable and reliable for me – it starts automatically and it has survived several upgrades.

Hi @Dan_Nicholson, welcome to the forums.

Perhaps you would like to enable “over-amplification” in the settings, sound section?
Let us know if you’ve already tried it.

@p_e Thanks for this - Yes I was referring to the speakers. Connecting to a bluetooth speaker gives a much better quality sound.

@Nils Thanks for the suggestions. I have just installed EasyEffects and used that preset to test, but I don’t see a noticeable difference. I’ll keep working on it to see if I have missed a step.

@Loell_Framework the volume is more than enough, so over-amplification isn’t necessary, it’s just the quality of the sound that I’m trying to adjust. Thanks!

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@Dan_Nicholson is this happening on the recommended OEM kernel or just the default one provided by Ubuntu - we test again 6.1 OEM: Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Installation on the Framework Laptop 13 - Framework Guides


Linux 6.1.0-1016-oem #16-Ubuntu SMP PREEMPT_DYNAMIC Wed Jun 21 08:45:10 UTC 2023 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

This all looks fine to me. Is this a problem through the speakers themselves or through anything attached?

Hi @Matt_Hartley , yes it’s just the sound from the speakers themselves. If I connect to a bluetooth device or use headphones there are no issues. I am really just trying to understand if there is a fault, or a configuration change I can make to improve the quality.

Since this is 22.04, we’re working with PulseAudio (EasyEffects if with Pipewire.

For your distro, we will want to do some testing with frequencies using PulseEffects.

sudo apt update && sudo apt install pulseeffects -y

This will allow you to better gauge things with different EQ settings to see if this helps at all.