Re: Mic. and softphones [was Voice redirection: from mic. to speakers on wheezy laptop].
I only can encourage everybody to use jackd for audio, when ever
possible. Jackd by far and away isn't perfect, but it's the most
comfortable  way to handle audio connections for Linux.
There's a GUI written by Rui Nuno Capela to handle jackd connections,
called QjackCtl. There are also command line apps to handle jackd
connections, jack_snapshot and aj-snapshot.
If you use jackd, than you only do yourself a favour.
 During a discussion about Lennart Poettering I heard how exactly
pulseaudio does adjust the volumes. Another audio engineer said
something similar like "every engineer handling audio in that way, would
be here and now fired". I only can agree.