Although PipeWire has started to take positions , that does not mean that development PulseAudio has stopped. In fact, the fifteenth version of the veteran sound server that has accompanied us during the past decade has recently been published, and which we will see if it remains by default in the next Ubuntu LTS.
What stands out the most about PulseAudio 15 is the inclusion of support for Bluetooth LDAC and AptX codecs for A2DP, support for high-quality SBC XQ configuration variants , native support for Bluetooth HFP profiles, plus support for the Bluetooth A2DP AVRCP absolute volume to control the volume of connected A2DP devices. Another interesting detail is that the ALSA path configuration files can be placed in the user’s folder.
Hardware support has been improved on some devices, most notably the SteelSeries Arctis 9 wireless headphones, the HP Thunderbolt Dock 120W G2, the Behringer U-Phoria UMC22 audio interface, the OnePlus Type-C Bullets headphones and the Sennheiser GSX amplifier. 1000/1200 PRO. On the other hand, new options have been added for ‘module-jackdbus-detect’, which takes care of automatically loading a JACK receiver and source when JACK starts up.
Although PulseAudio is a server closely tied to Linux, but it also supports other operating systems. For Windows, it should now be possible to compile PulseAudio with Meson using MinGW, various fixes have been made and the server can be run as a service on Win32. As far as concerned FreeBSD is , sound card disconnect support and device descriptions have been improved , and hot-plug devices now support ‘module-devd-detect’.
For application developers, PulseAudio 15 has introduced a new API for sending client messages to PulseAudio objects and a new mechanism that allows applications to disable shared memory on their connection to PulseAudio.
For packagers, from PulseAudio 15 we can highlight the removal of support for the Autotools build system, the possibility to avoid loading X11 modules when using the GNOME session on Wayland and that the supports for OSS and Valgrind are now configurable in Meson.
If you don’t want to go through the torturous compilation process, the easiest way to get PulseAudio 15 is by using a distribution rolling release , with the hackneyed Arch Linux leading the way. However, updating this component is rarely something critical for the user, who generally sees that the version provided by the distribution he uses is sufficient for his needs. Those who want to know all the details can consult the release notes .