State of Jack as a full pulsaudio replacement

Kaj Ailomaa ailomaa at
Sat May 5 10:39:51 UTC 2012

On 05/04/2012 10:30 PM, Luke Kuhn wrote:
> All these bugs and "no sound output" complaints with Pulseaudio bring back the idea of finding a way to make Jack replace Pulseaudio altogether.

The "no sound output" most probably happens with special cards, like 
multi channel cards that do not have a standard interface (stereo, 5.1 
and so on) for pulseaudio to read. At least one chip has been made 
functional - ice1712 (m-audio M-66, 1010 etc).
As for other bugs, I don't feel there are that many anymore. Nothing 
like there used to be. Even pulseaudio + jack works pretty well. Causing 
xruns at low latencies, but then I would not use pulseaudio with jack at 
low latencies. And, if you can't get sound directly from pulseaudio, 
using jack + pulseaudio in effect becomes a replacement for pulseaudio. 
The benefit here is of course that you can connect pulseaudio apps to 
your jack apps.

I wasn't very happy with pulseaudio in the past because of mainly two 
reasons - I got no sound out with my ice1712 cards, and the servers was 
crashing quite often. For a long time now, I've found pulse to work 
quite well.
Pulseaudio + jack is a little frail for me still. Sometimes pulseaudio 
will start to stutter.

I think the main problem is not pulseaudio itself anymore. It would be 
nice to have a simple way to turn it off. I think it's more about 
desktop control than the server itself that is the issue these days.

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