Audio Failure___!

My L5 is one year old later this month. Today, audio output died! I can see the level vary on the volume setting meter, but no sound comes out for every selectable sink and app. This is true even for a USB audio adapter.

Everything other than audio output seems to be working OK. I am typing this message on it now.

I haven’t contacted support… yet.

Anyone else see this?

Any advice?

As a temporary measure, I was going to tether a SIMless Spydroid to the L5. Anyone know of a usable XMPP voice call client for Android?

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Contact Purism support.

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If even a separate USB audio device produces no sound (and the sound devices are shown in sound settings)… Are you sure your hearing is not impaired (just asking for troubleshooting), have you checked if you your ears can receive any sounds from other devices (like birds, TV, people etc.)…? :wink:


Fair question. I clearly heard my own cursing as I tried to diagnose the problem. I know my curses were not silent, or merely internal bone conduction, because I saw the mic meter moving in the sound settings!


I can’t say that I’ve experienced this. Sound is fine with my L5 and no updates recently have had any effect on it (nor can I see any available). Any hints maybe from what you were doing with it in the last day or two - can you retrace your steps? Any updates, new apps, messed around with settings? And I don’t suppose you have a recent backup that you can revert to…?

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No updates for about two weeks.

I was driving and had indication of network connection in the status bar, but mo connectivity. When cycling the kill switches didn’t work, or even show in the notification bar, I tried to reboot. It hung, so I hard killed it by holding the power button. Startup was fine… except no audio output. :roll_eyes:

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Ay, not much to go on there. Seems like some random thing, likely. Next step would be to grab some relevant logs for clues. Maybe journalctl | grep 'snd' > file.txt (and/or ‘audio’, ‘sound’, ‘error’, ‘fail’) for starters…? Edit: and just as a reminder, there might be a lot of alarming things that are not related and do not seemingly cause problems (looking at my own logs).


Check that you haven’t muted it.

Have you tested with headphones plugged into the jack at the top?

For fun, if you have a lapdock or other suitable hardware, have you tried sending audio out via HDMI? (presuming that the monitor itself has speakers)

Otherwise …

This would be totally painful but:

  • Use Jumpdrive to image the eMMC drive
  • Reflash the phone
  • Test audio
  • Use Jumpdrive to restore the eMMC drive

If audio works on a reflashed phone then some config may be messed up in your phone as it is now. If audio does not work on a reflashed phone then it would tend to suggest hardware.

As everything else is working fine, another way of achieving the above test - with less disruption - could be:

  • If you are currently using the uSD drive then take the uSD card out (and adjust anything that will be annoyed by the disappearance of the card)
  • Flash the disk image to a new empty uSD card (probably can be done either on a host computer or on the phone itself)
  • Put the uSD card into the phone
  • Boot from the uSD card (requires up to date uboot)
  • Test audio

You should kill the cellular modem while doing either of the above tests as you don’t want calls, call logs, SMSs, MMSs ending up on the temporarily booted phone, if at all possible.

Caveat: I haven’t had the problem you report and I haven’t had to do either of the above troubleshooting procedures.


Is there a “mute” function separate from the volume control? If so, I don’t know where to find it.

Yes. That is the normal way I use the phone while driving.

Oh, that’s interesting. I will have to try that!

Roger that… last resort!

That occurred to me. Probably next step after trying HDMI audio – unless Support comes up with something.

Thanks for the advice!

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Yes. At Settings > Notifications:

and in phosh Mobile Settings app:


Did you try the PulseAudio Volume Control package? That one has a lot more audio options to play with than the GUI currently on the Librem 5.

It is in the software center.

Also, did you insall something that is conflicting with PulseAudio recognizing the audio device? See this link, if so: sound - PulseAudio not detecting any devices - Ask Ubuntu


Ah… it was not muted and I did not try PAVCtl. I did, however, discover the problem.

I’ve had Dino installed for almost a year, but had not messed with for a long time. I also had setup my XMPP account in Calls and Chats, but had also grown bored with them… it was all just so clunky.

I started messing with Dino again in the last few days – it seems to have gotten somewhat better – and gradually noticed that Chats was crashier than usual. It got so bad today (with Dino running all day) that my grey matter finally made the connection. I disabled my XMPP account in Chats and sound immediately started working!

So, not a hardware problem… a software conflict!


Mark your answer as a solution.

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