Bug 58880 - SB Live! (emu10k1) sound distortion problems and their solution
SB Live! (emu10k1) sound distortion problems and their solution
Product: Red Hat Linux
Classification: Retired
Component: kernel (Show other bugs)
i686 Linux
medium Severity medium
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Assigned To: Arjan van de Ven
Brian Brock
Depends On:
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Reported: 2002-01-26 09:56 EST by Costa Tsaousis
Modified: 2007-04-18 12:39 EDT (History)
0 users

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Doc Type: Bug Fix
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Last Closed: 2002-01-26 09:56:05 EST
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Description Costa Tsaousis 2002-01-26 09:56:00 EST
From Bugzilla Helper:
User-Agent: Mozilla/4.78 [en] (X11; U; Linux 2.4.9-21smp i686)

Description of problem:
RH kernels above 2.4.7 produce noice, scratches and generally distort sound when
a SoundBlaster Live card (emu10k1) is used.

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Install a RH 2.4.9 kernel (all versions)
2. Use the play command to play wavs (and possibly others, such a few games,
RH Bugzilla contains a bunch of such incidents.

Actual Results:  The sound starts with a scratch, or it is totally distorted.

Expected Results:  The sound produced should be clear.

Additional info:

This is a problem that has to do with the high memory kernel option.
emu10k1 seems that cannot operate correctly when the high memory option is
turned on (with either 4 or 64GB value).

I have verified that with this option turned off, emu10k1 works as supposed.
Additionally the kernel mailing list has a fix for this, so that emu10k1 will
work correctly with high memory. Use this link and follow the thread to find the


The solution is very simple. Change:

#define EMU10K1_DMA_MASK 0xffffffff /* DMA buffer mask for pci_alloc_consist */ 


#define EMU10K1_DMA_MASK 0x7fffffff /* DMA buffer mask for pci_alloc_consist */ 

and the problem should dissappear.
Comment 1 Arjan van de Ven 2002-02-11 11:31:16 EST
If this makes the difference then this is wrong too ;(

Anyway we have a emu10k1_new driver in the 2.4.9-21 erratum which lots of 
people see work better.
Comment 2 Costa Tsaousis 2002-02-11 13:25:04 EST
ok. The solution may be wrong (afterall I tryed to distribute the suggestions 
of others), but the cause, I believe, is not wrong.

I have compiled 2.4.15 with and without HIMEM. When HIMEM was on (either 4 or 
64GB) I had distortions while when it was off it worked perfectly.

Both compilations from exactly the same source tree, all other options the 

If that makes a difference, my machine is i686 SMP.
Comment 3 Costa Tsaousis 2002-02-11 13:25:52 EST
Also, 2.4.9-21smp still has the problem.
Comment 4 Arjan van de Ven 2002-02-11 13:30:43 EST
the emu10k1_new driver ? (you need to change emu10k1 to emu10k1_new in

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