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  1. #1

    microphones on apple macbook air

    Hello Guys,

    I'm running linux on an mba. I can't make the microphones (neither external nor internal) work.

    It seems there is a problem with Linux kernel trying to decipher apple (intentionally) corrupted bios, in particular the mic pins are wrongly assigned.

    Can someone help me solve this?

    Since I'm not allowed to post links, let me just say that many relevant data are in a unix & linux stack exchange question, the number 73044, with a similar title.

  2. #2
    Linux Newbie user-f11's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Sofia, BG
    Quote Originally Posted by nicolo_p View Post
    I can't make the microphones (neither external nor internal) work.
    1. Was your MacBook Air originally with that linux you are running, or you have 'digitally remastered' the mba with custom installed linux distro?
    2. Does it have two separate jacks (one for speakers and one for microphone), or is it only one combined jack?
    3. Have you tried resetting the System Management Controller and the NVRAM/PRAM?
    4. Have you checked the maintenance info on the apple support forums?
    5. Which is your linux distro?

  3. #3
    1. it was originally running Apple Mac OS X, then I put Ubuntu Linux 12,04 on it
    2. it has only one jack, which is used for both headphones and microphone; moreover, it has an internal microphone
    3. what do you mean? alsamixer? reboot? (sorry)
    4. (if I understand correctly) the mics worked under OS X, it is under Linux that they give trouble.

    Moreover, let me add that this is a well known problem among the alsa and kernel people, and my mba has audio at all just because a guy a couple of years ago wrote a patch to the kernel; he tried the same for the mics (combinations of verbs on the board) but witout succes.

    Can anybody shred light on how Mac OS X powers (at EFI level?) that mics?

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    Linux Newbie user-f11's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Sofia, BG
    If you have changed Mac OS X forget about It.3. You don't have this option any more.
    Try to download custom drivers. Go to the web page of the OEM and see whether they provide some sound card drivers (with microphone support) to patch the kernel.
    Try also a USB microphone, for there is a risk to outwhistle the current audio driver if you start patching the kernel with complex audio-mic jack drivers.

  6. #5
    if you take a look at realtek driver for linux, it says 'This Source Code is from world wide web dot alsa-project dot org.' (thanks to the stupid feature preventing me to post urls)

  7. #6
    Moreover, looking on google, I found a guy running Arch Linux and apparently having some mic pin in the alsa script result (I put the alsa script result in the unix & linux post, which has also all the relevant data)

  8. #7
    Linux Newbie user-f11's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Sofia, BG
    RE: ... the stupid option of references
    You can publish references on this forum without any problems:
    For Google search see this: Google
    For Yahoo search see this: Yahoo! Search - Web Search
    Where is the problem.

    RE: ... the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture
    First look in the repo list (of your Ubuntu distro). Open the package installer ('Add/Remove Software' or and in the search box write: alsa
    If you find some package with drivers for your iPad you may install them. But in my view you will need the custom drivers of the OEM (Apple).

  9. #8
    yeah, actually I'm prevented from doing that as long as I'm under 10 posts.

    I've taken a look at Ubuntu package installer (and of course I've got ALSA on my laptop), the problem is they don't provide anything specific for my mba1,1. As regards the OEM driver, if yuo take a look at my other post, I mention that the guy who wrote the kernel patch for audio also took a look at some Mac OS X .kext files, to find some help in guessing which pins are what; unfortunately, he wasn't able to do the same for mic pins, and suspected there was something going on at BIOS/EFI level.

  10. #9
    Just throwing this out here.

    kernel patch for microphones on Apple macbook Air 1,1 (Early 200 - Stack Overflow

    Without you posting specifics about your Macbook air like

    Easily find your hardware specifications (and some system monitoring commands) in Linux

    Me. I use INXI script to post machine specs in forums.

    Installation - inxi - How to install inxi using a variety of methods. - A newer, better system information script for irc, administration, and system troubleshooters. - Google Project Hosting

    $ inxi -b
    System:    Host: biker Kernel: 3.9.2-antix.1-486-smp i686 (32 bit)
               Desktop: IceWM 1.3.7 Distro: antiX-13-beta2-pt1_386-full Ahmad Sami 24 March 2013
    Machine:   System: manda product: Intel powered classmate PC version: Gen 1.5L
               Mobo: N/A model: N/A Bios: American Megatrends version: CM94515A.86A.0024.2008.0715.1716 date: 07/15/2008
    CPU:       Single core Intel Core CPU N270 (-HT-) clocked at 1600.00 MHz
    Graphics:  Card: Intel Mobile 945GSE Express Integrated Graphics Controller
               X.Org: 1.12.4 drivers: intel (unloaded: fbdev,vesa) Resolution: 1024x600@53.3hz
               GLX Renderer: N/A GLX Version: N/A
    Network:   Card: Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E PCI Express Fast Ethernet controller driver: r8169
    Drives:    HDD Total Size: 63.3GB (-)
    Info:      Processes: 97 Uptime: 1:05 Memory: 233.2/2014.9MB Client: Shell (bash) inxi: 1.8.47
    I refuse to let fear and fear of others rule my life. It puts my humanity at risk.
    Accepting Death is the only way to stay alive.

  11. #10
    hi, as i said before, i can't post links until i'm 10 posts, but since you posted for me, the third link is mine, and contains all specs. the others i've already seen in the past, and are for other models

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