making a bluetooth speaker work

Jude DaShiell jdashiel at
Fri Nov 18 15:44:27 UTC 2016

That's a pulseaudio/alsa problem depending on what you have on your 
system.  So pactl or alsamixer will be an intermediate tool for you to 
use to adjust output.  A primary command to run for output is aplay -l 
since that will tell you about all available devices.  What I would do 
is first shut the bluetooth speaker off and run aplay -l and check 
output.  Then turn on bluetooth speaker and make sure bluetooth speaker 
is paired and run aplay -l again.  See if the output is any different. 
If so, you probably know which speaker to set as the default.  Next, 
study pactl (good luck figuring out their terminology) and learn how to 
use that if you have pulseaudio installed on your system.  If not, you 
don't have to deal with pactl or pacmd.  Next study alsamixer and if you 
don't have pulseaudio installed, adjust your speaker with alsamixer and 
test with speakertest once adjusted with connected speakers attached and 
on.  If the connected speakers are silent but your bluetooth speaker 
runs then run alsactl store as root and then reboot and if all works 
well, your problem is solved.

On Thu, 17 Nov 2016, Glenn / Lenny wrote:

> Date: Fri, 18 Nov 2016 00:42:12
> From: Glenn / Lenny <gervin at>
> To: ubuntu-accessibility at
> Subject: making a bluetooth speaker work
> Hi,
> I am running Ubuntu 16.04 on an Intel NUC PPYH.
> I have been using a regular speaker on it, but I want to use an Anker pocket Bluetooth Speaker.
> I got it found and configured from the Bluetooth manager, and in sound in control center, I can test it fine.
> But I cannot get system sounds or Orca to speak from it, the audio only comes through connected speaker.
> So how does one get it to default to the bluetooth speaker?
> As mentioned, it works, as the left and right test sounds come from it, but that is the only thing I can get it to do so far.
> Thanks for any assistance.
> Glenn

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