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Thread Recording/Amplifying an Electric guitar with a PC (Newb)

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1 Recording/Amplifying an Electric guitar with a PC (Newb)
Hey there.

I recently got an Audigy 2 ZS Platinum Pro for my PC (for gaming purposes), but have recently decided to use it to amplify my electric guitar (my old amp having broken)... And maybe make some small recordings.

The Audigy has two Line-In's, into which I can plug in my guitar. (Phono jacks)

Guitar -> Line In on soundcard

However, when using this setup, volume is low and the quality of the sound
produced is terrible.

Trawling these forums, I have found that many people first connect the guitar to a mixer or preamp, and then to the Line In on the soundcard.

Would doing this (Guitar->Mixer/Preamp->Soundcard) improve sound-quality and volume? I'm looking for clear sound without hissing, etc.
Which of the two (Mixer or Preamp) would I need?

Secondly, can you recommend any software for realtime distortion (all guitar effects in general)? Preferably Tremolo, Wah, etc.

I think that line 6 makes a product that will solve all of your problems. The Line 6 Guitar Port. It's a USB interface which goes into some pretty good modeling software. At $99 it's probably the most affordable solution, programs like guitar rig offer the same help, but at a much higher price, and without the advantage of the USB interface. Hope this helps.
Hey Meshsmith,

In short, yes......

A signal coming out of an electric guitar is not the same as the line signal coming out of a mixing board, guitar amp (line out) or other system such as a cd player.

You would need two pieces of equipment to make this work properly.

1. A direct box - this will convert your instrument impedance to line impedance and remove any hum and noise in the signal.

2. A pre-amp - now that your signal is clean, you'll need to bring it to proper level to remove any noise from recording at a low volume. Careful not to make it too loud, as this will cause clipping. You won't get that overdrive sound of distortion that you get with a tube amp, you'll get a rather nasty clipping sound.

I tried not to get into the bigger details and just answered what you asked, so if anything else, feel free to elaborate.

Behringer makes a DI/Preamp that's decent...


hey dude,
Depending on what you want to do with it... I think I'm doing something similar to what you're trying to do. I use a ZOOM 606 guitar pedal right now. The pedal has a bunch of crazy effects, and it also simulates different amplifiers. Because of that it's got an amp built into it (with its own gain control), so I hook that (with adaptors to change the size of the connectors 1/4" --> 1/8") into the line in on my sound card. Now my problem is with hum, but with a direct box like mackovyak suggested... I'm gonna try that out.

Just another option for you, should solve your amp and direct effects problems.