Ubuntu 10 pulseaudio line in pass through

Like some of you guys I just got rid of Windows 7 and installed Ubuntu. How do people choose from the multitude of distributions that are out there? Coming to a new operating system requires a lot of help and support with simple problems that have not been encountered in Windows. Ubuntu stands out when it comes to these because of their vast amount of support forums out there as well as the simple package manager ‘apt-get’ which allows you to install pretty much anything you can think of. The vast community keeps this package manager full with the latest software they can so that the end user can easily install it. If you do have questions when it comes to your install, Google is the universal place to search for answers.

Now lets get to the issue. I have an Korg Electribe MX which i wanted to plug in to my line in plug on my computer. What this allows me to do is play the sound from it through my computer into my headphones. This way  I do not have to switch my headphones back and fourth between my computer and this synthesizer. It seems though that Ubuntu 10 cannot do this out of the box since it is using the pulseaudio server. There is an option for this though.

First I recommend you install PulseAudio Volume control.
$ sudo apt-get install pavucontrol
This will give you access to your sound device volumes and settings. This is where you will be making your change.

PulseAudio does not allow the user to control their line in by default. For this to work you will have to install the loopback module. You can enable the loopback module directly by running the following command in your terminal:
$ pactl load-module module-loopback

To make the module automatically load in the future use the following command:
$ sudo sh -c ' echo "load-module module-loopback" >> /etc/pulse/default.pa '

This will add the required information to your configuration files so that next time you start your computer the module will load again automatically.

Once you have this, open up the PulseAudio Volume Control and under the Recording tab you will be able to choose where you would like the output from line-in to go. Pick internal audio and you will now have sound coming from whatever you plug into it. Make sure that under the Configuration tab, the Internal Audio interface is set to Analog Stereo Duplex or something thats Duplex so it recognizes the line in as a device.
I noticed that the quality of the sound coming from my Korg Electribe is not as great as when I am plugged in directly to it. The convenience outweighs the sound quality right now. If there are any questions post your question in the comment section below.

  • Gelopez

    to make the module automatically load in the future is not working, is there something missing?

    • adriancoroian

      What is not working? Are you getting an error when running the command? When you look inside the file /etc/pulse/default.pa do you see a line load-module module-loopback?

  • Very handy. Thank you.

  • brilliant! i’ve been looking for 2 hours for this. the command for the auto module load is incorrect, you need to remove the last “