Ubuntu – Surround sound woes with 14.04


I have intel onboard audio and am trying to get surround sound working over the digital coax spdif port. I followed these instructions:
…which got me to the point where I can use speakertest -c 6 and successfully hear sound out of all my speakers independently, but I can't actually select this new device from VLC, the built-in "videos" app, or mplayer without getting errors and/or no sound whatsoever.

Anyone using 14.04 and getting surround sound (via DTS/AC3 passthrough)? If so, how!?

Best Answer

Finally had some luck by doing the weirdest thing. Leaving pavucontrol up.

That's right - I just don't close it. As long as I select one of the two Digital Surround 5.1 profile options (one includes Analog input) under the built-in audio section under the configuration tab of pavucontrol then DON'T CLOSE that app, I get working 5.1 audio in all other programs. If I close it, I go back to wonky issues including my receiver freaking out trying to decode whatever my computer is outputting and not knowing what to do.

This doesn't feel much like an answer, so if someone can shed some light on what might be going on here I'd appreciate it.