"SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device"

I'm hoping this is the right place to post this. Machine id a ThinkPad X200 running Kubuntu 9.04. Sound works on other applications and is OSS.

I get no sound at all with Kdenlive, though video plays just fine. I've tried "Auto" and "OSS" in the playback driver setting, but in each case i get the error ""SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device". This error appears no matter what driver I select.

No doubt somewhere here there is a discussion/remedy of this, but I've not been able to find it; my apologies if this is something that is found in TFM someplace!

Anyhow, I'd love to get it working, and if there's a magic incantation that will allow me to do so, I'd much appreciate hearing about it.

Thanks in advance.

In system settings>multimedia you can set your audio preferences for prefered applications. you can move up devices you prefer to use for the application. might be worth a shot!

I have no System Settings > Multimedia. In Kcontrol I have Sound & Multimedia > Sound System, but its only prioritization is to allow the KDE sound systel exclusive control to relinquish control to other apps after a specified time -- default is a minute of idleness. I've reduced this to 10 seconds, but no joy.

Might I be better off installing some other sound system, ALSA, say, and nuking OSS plus anything else there? Linux sound can be a real mess to deal with, especially on a notebook machine. I'd try to set it up on the desktop machine, but I'm running 8.04 LTS, and already broke a whole bunch of stuff because I didn't catch that there's no good version for 8.04, and apt-get uninstalled mplayer and a dozen other things when I tried . . .

I have the same problem. No matter what I select, I get "SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device". I have two soundcards, ca0106 (Soundblaster Live) and internal HDA Intel (STAC92xx). Both work properly with, for example, mplayer (-ao alsa:device=hw=1.0 or hw=0.0 selects the proper output).

But with kdenlive, when I try to select which device should be used, it offers me only "Default" device.
I tried to do with system settings>multimedia->audio preferences, but nothing changed (it, however, works for, for example, amaroK, which then plays through selected device).

Could you help me?

EDIT: I managed to get rid of "SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device" by setting:


But another problem emerged. Once I press "play", I hear some pops (indicating that audio device is somehow open/initialized), but then it is mute until I press "pause"; then, I hear a single pop. I get no sound from clip. Another question: where is the volume control? Maybe it's just muted?

And, another problem: how to add an audio file to project? Whenever I drag n' drop a mp3 or wav file to clips, I get "Clip ___.mp3 is missing or invalid. Remove it from the project?" Maybe did I compile the kdenlive without support for that files? But if I use Project -> Add Clip, and filter is set to "All supported files", it does show mp3's and wav's/

What distro do you use?
On Ubuntu there are some known sound issues (search for "pulseaudio")

Yes, I do use Ubuntu, but I tried also without pulseaudio (uninstalled it entirely, as it was recommended) and this didn't improve. I'm puzzled by two issues:

1. I have two sound cards; why kdenlive doesn't see it and the only output card it proposes is "Default"?

2. Where in kdenlive is the master volume control? In most multimedia software, including video editing, there is a slide which allows to control output volume during playback. I'm asking mainly because I think I have somehow muted output. When I press "play", I hear several pops (meaning that sound device was initialized/open) and then I hear silence, until I press "pause" - then I hear a single pop.

Kdenlive has no master volume control. (at least as far as I know)

Thank you, this answers my second question - I have to cope with it, and run some ALSA volume control software.

And how about first issue - how to select an ALSA device for playback? I have two sound devices, namely standalone ca0106 and integrated intel stac92xx (as seen by system), but none of them appears in configuration window. The only position on drop-down is "Default".

The very existence of this drop-down suggests that kdenlive is designed to have a choice from multiple sound devices, but apparently this doesn't work for me.

Kdenlive uses `aplay -l` or reads /proc/asound/pcm for lines with "playback" if no aplay available. It uses these to generate plughw:, ALSA PCMs. Then, it sends that to MLT, which sets the environment variable AUDIODEV for SDL. You must restart Kdenlive after making changes. Hopefully, this helps you figure out why cards are not listed.

I'm running Gentoo Linux, kernel 2.6.31, with kdenlive 0.7.6.

As it happens, I have exactly the same problem.

I can add clips, but I hear nothing. kdenlive is detecting that the clip has audio, and seems to recognize the codec. I can split audio and see the waveform, but I don't hear anything. Sound works just fine in every other application I use.

I tried installing pulseaudio, but there was no change, apart from a new error message when I set the output driver to ALSA:

"SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device"

I've tried a number of different sound constellations, without any luck.

I don't understand why this should be so complicated, really. Sound works fabulously for everything else, and it's never really been a problem.

I'm running a Thinkpad T40.

In a terminal, does 'melt some-video-file' play with audio?

Ubuntu Lucid Users --

I was getting the "SDL failed to open audio: No available audio device" error.


I am not using PulseAudio. I removed the pulseaudio package with Synaptic for various other non-Kdenlive reasons (which also requires that package ubuntu-desktop be removed). In (Gnome) menu System->Preferences->Sound Preferences->Audio, Default Output Plugin and Default Input Plugin are set to ALSA, and also in System->Sessions->Startup Programs, Pulse Audio Sound System has been unchecked. Package libpulse0 (and other similar libraries) remain installed.

What I Did:

Add the package libsdl1.2debian-alsa (version 1.2.14). This requires that libsdl1.2debian-pulseaudio be removed.

Now I have audio in Kdenlive (and melt from the command line).

My guess is that the magic incantation is:
sudo apt-get install libsdl1.2debian-all

I had the same error (Kubuntu 10.4 - same error message and no sound in kdenlive, but the rendered movie had sound), and the problem was fixed by installing that package. I got the tip from this old bug report:

The package libsdl1.2debian-all should work for everybody, but if you know which sound manager you have (alsa, arts, esd, oss, pulseaudio) it might work to install a single package instead (like the last poster did).
But *-all is probably easier, and less prone to break stuff in other programs.

Unfortunately my latest installation of Ubuntu 10.04 has resulted in a stalemate with regards to libSDL and PulseAudio. Apparently the only way to install the needed library (libsdl1.2debian-all) is to remove the ubuntu desktop package, and Synaptic advises against doing that. Can anyone suggest a solution ?



Configure ALSA and PulseAudio to output through Jack. That's what KXStudio, based on 10.04, does.

Just want to report that under Ubuntu 10.10, removing the libsdl pulse audio package, e.g.:

# sudo apt-get remove libsdl1.2debian-pulseaudio

Resulted in Ubuntu automatically requiring that the libsdl1.2debian-alsa be installed. Works like a charm now.

After upgrading to Kubuntu 11.04 I have this problem too. Audio works fine in other apps. HW: HP dv4 Intel sound card.