[MPlayer-users] oss...alsa....a bit offtopic

Arpi arpi at thot.banki.hu
Sat Sep 7 03:19:28 CEST 2002


> [Automatic answer: RTFM (read DOCS, FAQ), also read DOCS/bugreports.html]
> hello, 
> On Fri, Sep 06, 2002 at 11:07:34AM -0400, gabor wrote:
> > what does alsa provide that oss doesn't?
> what oss can provide according to their website
> (www.opensound.com/linux.html):
>   OSS/Linux is aimed at the commercial Linux market
>   and new Linux users who require products which are
>   stable, easy to use and come with technical
>   support. If you think saving few hours of work is
>   worth $20, then OSS/Linux is for you!
> there are also drivers for free afaik, i'm not an expert on oss drivers,

the commercial oss drivers are perfect, and are available for many
platforms, not only for linux. but they costs money...
(except drivers for some common cheap cards, they provide them for free)

note, that 4front tech isn't a 'bad company', they spend the money for
purchasing licenses and tech level specifications for new cards to be able
to write drivers. unfortunatelly most of them are under NDA so no source :(

there are free (gpl, NOT written by 4front tech. ppl) drivers as part of the
kernel, but unfortunately many of them are incompletee, implements just a
subset of the oss api, and the advanced functions like ac3 pasthru, get
delay, controlling buffers etc aren't implemented or are buggy.
they are enough for xmms and some mp3 players but aren't enough for more
complex apps like games or video players, where low delay and buffer control
is required. alsa 9 is a better choice for such cards.

> alsa is gpl / lgpl, so if you have a few hours spare ("installing" my

the real advantage of alsa is having a well designed, modularized api,
so card drivers don't have to re-implement everything from scratch, just
implement the minimal functions to drive the cards, as much as possible is
implemented in the core as generalized code.
this results less driver-specific issues.

A'rpi / Astral & ESP-team

Developer of MPlayer, the Movie Player for Linux - http://www.MPlayerHQ.hu

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