I had a computer given to me, so i decided to set it up just for recording. Its a basic set up, i have a mic going into the mic-in on my soundcard and that records vox and guitar just fine. I was recording bass, which i did by running the line-out of my amp into the line-in of my soundcard, and no matter what i do i get a slight bit of distortion. I have the line-in volume set to about 75%, but i tried it lower and i still get distortion. I use audacity, and i have the line-in gain set low on that, low enough thats its not even close to clipping. I know its not my speakers either since i monitor it through 2 cabinets with a 12", 8" and 2 tweeters each. Anyone know a remedy to my problem?
Try doing some setting chances on Audacity or try another program to see if the bass comes out clean.

I'm thinking it could be that your sound card just doesn't like your bass amp. Cheap setups like this are prone to a lot of problems.

You could try a small Behringer mixer which would give you a nice upgrade. New better preamp for the mic, line ins, faders, EQ...

With those mixers you would run the main out to your computer's Line in. No more using the mic port with its cheap preamp on board...

If you have a simple computer mic you could swap that out for something like an SM57 Shure or just this which is good for vocals but may be better all around than a computer mic

The mic is an Audio Spectrum AS-400 dynamic and works well for me
Last edited by moody07747 at Sep 5, 2007,
simple computer setups like that are just prone to static, poor sound to noise ratios, and clipping. There are many affordable options.
Agile AL-3100 (highly recommended)
SX SST57 strat copy
OE30 Hollowbody
SX fretless bass
Epiphone PR-200 acoustic
Yamaha G-40 classical
Epiphone Valve Junior head
1x12 custom cab
4x12 Behringer Half-stack

My Solo Stuff

My Band

I have a decent Shure mic (its downstairs now, so i dont know the model no.) which records guitar and vox perfectly, i get no static or distortion at all. I Have a samson powered mixer that i could try to run the bass through to see if my soundcard hates the amp. Its a SB Live Platinum card, so its not like im using a really terrible integrated card *cringe*.
Since the computer was given to me and the mic is borrowed, i wanted to see if i could pull this off without spending any money at all. Thats why i use audacity (that and profession programs charge you out the arse).
I'll try to mic my bass and see if its just my Line-In port that hates me. The mic input is crystal clear, so even if the mic doesnt pick up the bass great, it will at least be clean.
your computer might just be trying to piss you off. play with distortion, so it'll think that you want distortion, so it'll give you a clean sound, thus giving you what you really want.

reverse psychology always seems to work.
Computers are generally out to kill us.
I'll try some stuff out later this afternoon and see what i come up with.
i have found that many computer sound cards just dont like bass guitar, really. probly has something with trying to process the low frequencies. i dont have problems playing bass back that was tracked else where, but i have had the similar problem when trying to do bass on some computers. i dont know for sure what the answer is, i really feel like it may be frequency dependent because even when i would track a clean guitar with lots of bass cranked on the amp i would have the same problem.
Quote by ILuvPillows?
Masturbate it off.
I ended up mic'ing the amp. With some creative EQ-ing it sounded pretty good. It handled the low freq's fine even after i turned the bass knob on the amp all the way up and played in drop D. Maybe my line-in port is screwed up. I'll try to turn of the 20db mic boost and use that as a line-in and see if it distorts. If it does i'll just mic it. I was playing with a pic because i am mainly a guitar player and the computer got mostly the higher harmonics, but i assume when my bass player plays with fingers and i get some more precise EQ going on it should sound alright.
Im pretty sure this is the mic i was using http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Shure-PG48QTR-Microphone-with-Switch?sku=270285
I have that and 2 ancient peaveys that actually sound good. I'll try both mics and a mix of both to see what happens.