jvgruss wrote:As a side question: why would I not have any problems recording with Audacity, but when I try to use those Guitar Modulation software apps it gives me problems?
3 things to consider, jvgruss:
When using a software amp sim, you just want to send a dry guitar signal. The software does all the 'amplifying' for you. It sounds like you're running your guitar through your pedal and or your amp first before the computer, right? You don't want to do that. Plug your guitar directly into the soundcard (caveat: I know nothing about PCs and their soundcards, I'm a Mac guy. I'm assuming you can do that without damaging anything. If not, please ignore!
Either Guitar Rig or Amplitube need initial routing. Launch the standalone app and search the drop down menus for 'audio/midi setup'. Make sure all the ins and outs are kosher.
Either GR or Amplitube should also be available as plugins in Audacity. Meaning you can use Audacity as the recording software and apply the amp sims from within it. Try that and see if it makes any difference.
As Moonrider mentioned, an interface will tend to make all these problems go away.