I'm currently having a lot of trouble trying to get Alsa PCM to do anything other than Stereo/Mono. I'm more than certain the raspberrypi is capable. However I can't seem to find the information I need to get Alsa to run with anything higher than stereo.

amixer shows me this.

osmc@osmc:~$ amixer
Simple mixer control 'PCM',0
  Capabilities: pvolume pvolume-joined pswitch pswitch-joined
  Playback channels: Mono
  Limits: Playback -10239 - 400
  Mono: Playback 120 [97%] [1.20dB] [on]

tvservice -a output

osmc@osmc:~$ tvservice -a
     PCM supported: Max channels: 8, Max samplerate: 192kHz, Max samplesize 24 bits.
     AC3 supported: Max channels: 6, Max samplerate:  48kHz, Max rate  680 kb/s.
     DTS supported: Max channels: 6, Max samplerate:  96kHz, Max rate 1536 kb/s.
  DTS_HD supported: Max channels: 8, Max samplerate: 192kHz, Max rate    8 kb/s.

I have OSMC installed as my main boot, with RetroPie installed as a program within it. My main goal is to get 5.1 surround to work with Moonlight so I can play Steam games in full surround on my television. However it seems that moonlight uses Alsa which forces it to 2.0 Stereo.

Altho I can get 7.1 surround through Kodi watching a movie. I'm pretty sure thats only because of the passthrough. Can Alsa passthrough the audio? I'm very confused and rather frustrated. So any help is appreciated.

Also I have my pi set up as follows Pi > Sony Receiver > TV through HDMI.

If you need any more information please feel free to ask.

1 Answer 1


If surround sound directly from alsa is what you need, I suggest taking a look at this article: http://alsa.opensrc.org/SurroundSound

The article also covers JACK.

  • This seems to be for analog audio. I need it for over HDMI. Dec 21, 2015 at 0:39
  • @KillerXtreme You should be able to change default audio output to HDMI in alsa's config. Dec 21, 2015 at 0:39
  • It is coming out of HDMI, however only in Stereo. I want it to access all of the speakers available on my system. Which for my receiver is 7 speakers and 1 LFE, if I can at least get 5.1 Surround I'd be happy. Dec 21, 2015 at 0:45
  • Neither of those articles helped me in the slightest. Dec 21, 2015 at 1:30
  • Up until this product, it was only possible over HDMI. kickstarter.com/projects/1250664710/…
    – Matt
    Jan 19, 2017 at 5:47

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