CMI8788 ALSA Linux Driver Rewritten
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 13 November 2007 at 10:30 PM EST. 1 Comment
Back in September we were finally able to test the Razer Barracuda AC-1 under Linux. This sound card, which employs the C-Media Oxygen HD CMI8788 audio processor, took quite a while to be supported by ALSA but the CMI8788 driver found in ALSA 1.0.15 was very problematic. This is the same APU found on other high-end sound cards such as the Auzentech X-Meridian, Bluegears B-inspirer, and ASUS Xonar, but with this driver it had worked worse than most cheaper alternatives.

However, the author of the ALSA CMI8788 driver, Clemens Ladisch, has rewritten this driver from scratch. This developer finally got his hands on an ASUS Xonar, which has led to this rewritten driver. Analog playback, digital playback, analog recording, and digital recording should be working to varying extents with this new driver. What is not yet implemented, however, is front panel output, mixer controls for analog recording, and SPDIF port controls.

More information on the C-Media CMI8788 Linux status can be found on this ALSA Wiki page. This driver is now called snd-oxygen or snd-virtuoso and we will be testing it here internally with the Razer Barracuda AC-1. For now the driver needs to be downloaded manually (the download link can be found in the above-mentioned Wiki page) but should appear in ALSA 1.0.16-rc1 and later.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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