DI straight into soudcard?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by ryker888, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. ryker888


    Jul 21, 2008
    Birmingham, AL
    Since I have no proper means of recording, could I go from a DI straight into the sound card of my PC? Also I have a smaller amp that has a line out, could this be another alterative?
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Most sound cards of decent quality have a preamp built in, with an unbalanced 1/4" input jack, so no DI is needed. If your soundcard has no preamp, you need a preamp, not a DI. If your sound card has a preamp but does not have an unbalanced 1/4" input jack, then you do need a DI.

    The line out on an amp can usually be used as a DI, but it depends on the specific amp. RTM. :)
  3. LuvMusic


    Aug 18, 2007
    Oak Park, IL
    Also beware of lag going straight into a sound card. Depending on your sound card, the amount of memory on your PC and the speed of your processor many people experience significant lag issues going straight into a sound card.
  4. dannybuoy


    Aug 3, 2005
    What soundcard do you have? I assume built in sound or a standard consumer soundblaster card?

    Using the line out from your amp will work just fine in most cases and seems to be your best bet. You can plug your bass directly into the mic/line in on standard PCs, but sound quality will not be great. Best to save for a cheap USB/Firewire interface that has high impedance guitar inputs. I've got a Mackie Onyx Satellite that does a great job.

    Lastly, assuming you're using a PC and not a Mac, if you do have a big standard soundcard that doesn't use ASIO drivers, download ASIO4ALL to give you a performance boost. With this you can use great plugins like Ampeg SVX to process your sound in real time and simulate a proper bass amp.
  5. Nyarlathotep

    Nyarlathotep Inactive

    Feb 5, 2006
    West Coast of Canada
    1 - Don't use the headphone out (if any). You prolly won't be able to attenuate the computer input enough. My laptop can't.

    2 - The line out would prolly work, but require a fair amount of attenuation on your volume control on you comp. You also run the risk of ground loops. See #3 for explanation.

    3 - The DI, if it has a signal pad and ground lift, would be the best bet. Even if it only has a ground lift its still better IMHO/E than the line out. I use my laptop for recording, but I can't power it thru AC (I have the LT more for size than portability and the batt sux ballz) because the line out/FX send ground loops with the LT. When I get my DI today, that will all be OVER :hyper: