Help Connecting Guitar to PC (laptop) for Amplitube!

Discussion in 'Recording Studio' started by Thrill, Oct 26, 2014.

  1. Thrill

    Thrill Senior Member

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    So Ive got Amplitube 3 that I just installed and Im trying to connect my guitar to my laptop to get it going, but so far Im having trouble.

    Ive tried connecting the guitar straight into the microphone input of my PC and that doesnt work, so I tried connecting the guitar to my shitty little amp then running a cable out from the headphone output and into the microphone input on the laptop and that doesnt work.

    So now I guess the next step is getting a guitar usb interface. Ive been looking these up on amazon and theres mixed reviews (this is the one Ive been looking at [ame]http://www.amazon.com/Behringer-UCG102-BEHRINGER-GUITAR-LINK/dp/B000PAPO9W/ref=sr_1_cc_2?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1414363714&sr=1-2-catcorr&keywords=guitar+usb+interface[/ame]. Some people say they work perfectly right out of the box, some people say they got them to work after messing with it for a while, and other people say theyre garbage and dont work at all.

    Anyone have a recommendation for a way to connect my guitar to my laptop that will work and wont cost me a ton of money? (looking to spend no more than around $80 if I can avoid it).

    Also another thing Im seeing is even when theres nothing plugged into my mic input when Amplitube is up its still pushing out this real electric sounding squeal/crackling. Could it be the cooling fan causing interference or some other issue with a laptop?

    Im a total noob at this so if someone could school me a bit and give me a recommendation to get this working Id appreciate it. Or maybe Id be better off getting a small amp modeler/effect processor like a Line6 Pod or something?

    I really just want to be able to play with headphones and get a wide variety of tones and effects. I know it wont be super great recording quality stuff, but this is just for sitting around and playing to myself.
     
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  2. Redd

    Redd Junior Member

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    I'm going to be getting the focusrite USB audio interface. This seems to be the one that a lot of people recommend, apparently Roland and Tascam do some good ones as well. You can get cheaper ones by all accounts but from what I hear it's very much false economy as they are supposed to be a bit on the rubbish side. I should point out that I'm no expert in this field but I am sort of at the stage where you are at the moment and after doing a lot of asking for advice I'm told the above unit or one of the near equivalents is really the only way to go if you want it sound decent.

    I'm sure there will be people with much more knowledge along soon but that's pretty much what I have managed to ascertain so far from my research and much more knowledgeable people.
     
  3. Mexicanbreed

    Mexicanbreed Senior Member

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    Focusrite gets mentioned a lot around here, but I have no experience with those, since I had a bit of a hard time finding an interface in my neck of the woods.

    I did find this one:

    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Tascam-US122MKII-Audio-Midi-Interface/dp/B002TTOJUC/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1414379864&sr=8-2&keywords=tascam+us-122"]http://www.amazon.com/Tascam-US122MKII-Audio-Midi-Interface/dp/B002TTOJUC/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1414379864&sr=8-2&keywords=tascam+us-122[/ame]

    [​IMG]

    You can record a mic and a guitar at the same time, or two mics at the same time. It has got headphone out, or you can plug to studio monitors from the back. I use this interface to play through Guitar Rig 5, no real problems so far. I chose this one specifically because it also does MIDI I/O, which not many others do, at least not in this price range.

    With this, I hope to be able to plug the guitar, a MIDI controller, a mic(if I ever want one), etc. Pretty complete for its price. Regarding the electronic crackling...I donĀ“t know what causes it, but GR5 did the same to me once I forgot to plug the cable into the interface. Everything worked fine once I plugged in and the signal got through.

    NOTE: There are a few guys around here who really know their stuff (Freddy G comes to mind in the first place, but there are others as well with real professional experience in the field). It would do you well to read some threads around here.
     
  4. El Kabong

    El Kabong Senior Member

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    Focusrite is definitely the way to go... :thumb:
     
  5. DavGrape

    DavGrape Silver Supporter

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    Plug into the Line in, not the mic input. It's a stereo input, but a mono plug is fine.
    Amplitube will output both channels.
     
  6. craggles

    craggles Senior Member

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    I use a Behringer USB interface. If all you want to do is play with headphones through Amplitube, this will serve you nicely.

    Mine's been going strong for almost 4 years... no issues at all. Only $40.

    [ame=http://www.amazon.com/Behringer-UCG102-BEHRINGER-GUITAR-LINK/dp/B000PAPO9W]Amazon.com: BEHRINGER GUITAR LINK UCG102: Musical Instruments[/ame]
     
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  7. spitfire

    spitfire Senior Member

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    Well, you could go with the iRig, that's what they're for. Though I use mine with my Win 8 notebook, I'm not 100% sure all are PC/Win compatible. They seem more iOS oriented.

    But if you want other options like line in, or mic connections, then more general purposes audio interfaces are the way to go. The number of choices is overwhelming. But I just plowed through a lot of this for a desktop interface and settled on a Focusrite product.

    Aside from the hardware, they all will have some sort of mixer app for controlling the unit. How this software works can make a big difference in how the unit works. Though all are going to allow you to record and playback. The Focusrite is very flexible. I can't think of any mixing or routing you can't do with it. Others may be as flexible, though I know the MOTU products have some serious limitations on output routing.

    Concerning the squealing the OP mentioned. I've heard this before, but only when Amplitube was not installed correctly. This may also be why nothing seems to work. As other have mentioned, you might get some sort of signal from a guitar to get it, but the quality will be low without some sort of interface.

    I have found Amplitube to be ridiculously difficult to install (I use Windows). At a minimum, you must install it using the account that you will also run the software in. Second during installation this means the account MUST be set to have administrator privileges.

    If you want to run it within a normal user account (as I do), I have to temporarily change that account to and admin account, install Amplitube, then change that account back to a user account. Installing from an admin account, but trying to run from a different user account will NOT work. Also, trying to install using the "Run as Administrator" option does not work.

    Going back to an admin setting is also necessary anytime you want to update or add gear. It's one of the stupidest things I've ever run across in software installation, but it's the way it is.
     
  8. Thrill

    Thrill Senior Member

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    Thanks for the suggestions everyone. What I ended up doing was getting a Behringer V-Amp 3 amp modeler/effect processor, which also came with a Behringer UCA222 usb audio interface. To be honest, I havent even used the audio interface or Amplitube. The V-Amp is great on its own and Ive had no desire or need to go to the computer. I may try my hand at some recording if I can find some cracked software.

    @Spitfire, I had no problem installing Amplitube. It was a cracked version I got from a torrent site (Call me a thief and a scumbag if you must, but who pays for software these days?). I just installed the program and applied the crack patch and it was up and running.

    Since were on this topic, what is a decent recording program? Ive been hearing a lot of people using Garageband or something like that. The last recording program I used was Cool Edit Pro 2.0 and that was at least 10 years ago lol.
     
  9. spitfire

    spitfire Senior Member

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    All sorts of people pay for software. These companies have to make money from it. The fact that digital downloads make it easy to steal content, doesn't make it okay. The fact that you may think everybody does it, doesn't make it okay. The fact you're not likely be caught or punished, doesn't make it okay. The fact that you might be a poor high school or college student, doesn't make it okay. It's simply not okay.

    Odds are you don't steal other things and don't consider yourself a bad guy. So please stop and really think about this. There are plenty of low cost ways of doing most things. And some truly free things available. Imagine you were the one working to make these products, would you think it okay if people used your work without paying for it. Imagine your musical interests become your livelihood. Would you think it okay for people to steal your music, just because it's easy. I'm sure you wouldn't.

    Every dime you save stealing software is a dime that doesn't go to the people who created it or a dime they have to get from customers who do pay for it.
     
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  10. lucidspoon

    lucidspoon Senior Member

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    The nice thing about Behringer products is that they're cheap, so it doesn't cost a lot when you inevitably have to replace them. I went through a few V-amps (desktop and rack) years ago before giving up on them.

    GarageBand is Mac specific and should come on all Macs. A great, cheap alternative is Reaper $60 and worth 5x that.
     
  11. KP11520

    KP11520 Senior Member

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    I assume you're using A3 in stand alone and not as a plug-in in a DAW.....

    So for A3 to work, you have to open the app and point it whatever hardware device you are using to send the guitar signal in to A3.

    So when open, Click on: Settings > Audio Midi Setup >

    The very top drop down box will have what choices it sees that might work.

    Maybe DirectX or whatever drivers that run the audio on your laptop will need to be chosen if you're using Line in or Mic in and choose the whatever applies.

    When you get a USB AI, you will need to install the drivers and get it up and running and then choose it in A3.

    Next question.... Where will you send what you want to hear? Through the AI or the sound card? (because they each have different speaker setups for best results).

    Oh yeah... Sometimes Laptop power supplies make so much noise, you have to run on battery. I hope this is not your case.

    And I'd go with a used Focusrite on CL long before I'd using anything by Behringer. But that's up to you.
     
  12. kevinpaul

    kevinpaul Premium Member

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    Right click on the volume symbol and you will see all the settings. Microphone setting needs turned on for that port and the interal needs turned off.
     
  13. GeeJay

    GeeJay Senior Member

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  14. kevinpaul

    kevinpaul Premium Member

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    I got a Lexicon Alpha from Amazon for $58.00. It works great and a simple set up. I can run a mic into it and a guitar. I use fender fuse.
     

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  15. kevinpaul

    kevinpaul Premium Member

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    Good recordings. Not very hard at all
     
  16. Gibson_Ed

    Gibson_Ed Senior Member

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    I just bought an iRig HD to have a portable recording/practicing solution. Turns out this little $99 digital guitar interface is a whole lot more capable than I imagined! It comes with the free Amplitube app and a few assorted stomp box and amp models for the iOS app, and also came with the PC/Mac versions of Amplitube 3 and several other audio applications as well!

    The iRig HD is a step up from the regular $39 iRig (and upcoming iRig 2), where you get studio quality audio with no crosstalk and interference, making it suitable for a live rig. While I still love my real audio hardware, the iRig HD coupled with Amplitube and the various amp and stomp box models provide excellent tone!
     
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  17. Thrill

    Thrill Senior Member

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    This thread is oldish, and Id just decided to get away from digital, computer fx and amp modelers, but after seeing how my friend has his Pod HD500 or whatever set up to his PC with the software and has it connected to his amp, and how great it sounds and how super versatile it is, Ive been thinking more and more about doing this. It just seems super easy to do and hes easily able to disable the preamp to get a pure amp tone with just using the pod software to add some effects and EQ.
     

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