Ubuntu – hissing noise over headphones only in Ubuntu


So I've looked at many of the other forums but nothing I've seen so far has eliminated my issue. As soon as I boot up my laptop, Lenovo T440s, I start hearing a pop then a loud continious hiss that seems to cut out anytime the sound adjusted. This only happens when I boot into Ubuntu, when I boot into windows I do not have this issue.

I tried muting my mic, I tried alsamixer, neither worked. The pop and hissing does not happen over speakers, only headphones, and it happens with the same intensity no matter what my volume setting is, even when it's on mute.

When I open 'sound settings' it stops, but nothing I've done there has prevented it coming back. The only thing so far that stops it is if I have other sounds playing. It almost seems like it is a result of the soundcard not being used. Any ideas out there? or forums that already dealt with this that I did not see? Thanks

Best Answer

This might be the Intel sound card entering power save mode. Check whether power save in currently enabled via:

    cat /sys/module/snd_hda_intel/parameters/power_save

If this returns 1, power save is enabled; it returns 0 otherwise. Check to see if changing this solves your problem by runnning

    echo 0 | sudo tee /sys/module/snd_hda_intel/parameters/power_save

Then play some music, pause it and see if the noise returns. If the problem persists, it's something else.

If this does get rid of the noise, you'll find it's only temporary, since the value can be reset on reboot or on switching between battery to AC power. A few different services could be changing this value, so try configuring each of them:


To /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf, add the line:

    options snd-hda-intel power_save=0


To /usr/lib/pm-utils/power.d/intel-audio-powersave, add or uncomment the line: INTEL_AUDIO_POWERSAVE=false


If installed, in /etc/default/tlp, set the following:

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