Better audio from virtualbox

A project log for Silly software wishlist

Motivation to do some software projects by writing them down.

lion mclionheadlion mclionhead 05/22/2019 at 23:310 Comments

A pulseaudio server is a good investment when running Linux a mac. Audio on Virtualbox still studders & only goes to 1/2 volume, after 20 years of virtual boxes & virtual machine corporations now at 12 figure valuations. Cinelerra predates both pulseaudio & jack, still using esound for networked audio, but pulseaudio can emulate esound. The /usr/local/etc/pulse/ file needs

load-module module-esound-protocol-tcp auth-cookie-enabled=0 auth-anonymous=1

Then, the command line needs to be

pulseaudio -v --exit-idle-time=99999

They've firewalled it with multiple authentication layers & timeouts. On Cinelerra, the esound driver takes the IP address of the virtualbox host & a port of either 0 or 16001.  Playback buffer samples of 4096 has given the lowest latency without studdering.  While the playback buffer affects Cinelerra's stopping time, the audio continues playing until the later buffers in the TCP chain drain, which is always much longer

Pulseaudio allows Linux to access the full dynamic range & doesn't studder. After years of being a $3000 brick, the mac finally has acceptable audio, though very bad latency. Better latency would require native pulseaudio support in Cinelerra, until the next protocol comes out.