I’m not sure if this is one two issues.
The selected audio output device is blank after restarting after the last output device has been disconnected. One example would be that HDMI is connected and the audio output device is set to HDMI. Then computer is then shutdown and the HDMI cable is disconnected. The computer is started and the selected audio output device would be blank.
Clicking the down arrow on the selection will show headphones and internal speakers on the laptop. Selecting one of these works fine and the Test button in the sound settings outputs the audio on the right device. But outputting the audio from any audio source (Gnome Podcasts, Google Chrome, Spotify etc.) started before the selection won’t output any audio on the selected output device until the audio source is restarted. One example would be that Gnome Podcast is running the a new audio output device is selected. There won’t be any audio outputted from Gnome Podcasts (testing with the Test button in the Sound settings works) until Gnome Podcasts is restarted.
I guess expected behaviour for 1. would be to default to any of the available output devices and 2. restart of the audio source wouldn’t be needed.
System: Intel laptop with Fedora Workstation 34 with latest updates.
Please let me know if any other information is needed.