Only getting mono sound

Skip two paragraphs to get to the issue if you don't want to know the back story.

I was using Xfce until a few weeks ago. It ran fine...or at least it did. I ran into some issues with loading Xfce. It would crash my computer for whatever reason. I don't remember a particular update causing this issue. It just seemed out of the blue.

I was thinking my video card crapped out on me, however, it crashed when trying to load Xfce on my integrated Nvidia graphics also. I even re-formatted my computer and Xfce still crashed on me. I switched to MATE and no crashes since then. Got myself a new GPU too :) seems to be working great so far.

Anyway, for whatever reason, I only have audio coming out of the left speaker channel. It seems that any setting I try to change in MATE's audio controller doesn't keep. I did not have this issue when I was running Xfce. Any suggestions? I am part of the wheel and operator groups.
Sound is done by the kernel so the Desktop Environment shouldn't be the issue. It 'sounds' (pun intended) like a hardware issue. What audio card do you have? Please post the output of cat /dev/sndstat.
pcm0: <NVIDIA (0x0051) (HDMI/DP 8ch)> (play)
pcm1: <NVIDIA (0x0051) (HDMI/DP 8ch)> (play)
pcm2: <Realtek ALC888 (Analog 7.1/2.0)> (play/rec) default
pcm3: <Realtek ALC888 (Analog)> (play/rec)
pcm4: <Realtek ALC888 (Rear Digital)> (play)