ALSA is the new sound package for Linux, Its integrated into every Distro.There was and old package I dont remember what it was called ,but this is what every Distro is moving to. Some of the Distro still use the old package by default because it supports alot of older hardware,every Distro Ive seen gives U a choice somewhere under your sound settings of which sound service to use.Since U can choose the sound service,not all mixers and such have been updated to use the new service,so some mixers may work on the old service and some on the new service,and also some mixers u can choose which service.
MP3 is not nativily supported on linux,because of legal issues,but there are ways around that,atleast Ive found ways on suse linux.
If U have any Issues no matter What disro U choose,best place to find answers,Is on that distro's Forum.
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