I'm trying to use a software called "Amplitube" as a guitar amplifier on a macbook air. However I'm really confused.

I used to have a mac with both a mic input and sound output jacks so I simply plunged in and everything worked fine except some settings of the modeler caused sound corruption maybe due to high processing demand.

So my question is do I need a so called "audio interface" in order to solve the sound corruption problem? Is "audio interface" another name for sound card?

And also the problem that my current macbook has only one input/output (They are consolidated), could it be solved by the audio interface?

After all how can I record my playing using a backing track and capture my playing using a camera?

Any help on any of these questions is highly appreciated.

3 Answers 3


Yes you need an interface. For any recording, I suggest you do so. A simple USB interface with a couple inputs should suffice. Not sure on your budget but it's worth it. Better monitoring, better converters. What DAW are you using to record? Pro Tools, Logic? Get the right tools then you can use Amplitube as a plugin on a track and record directly in your software. Unless you already are?

Check out a USB interface. Generally low cost and will give you the flexibility you need. If you like Pro Tools, or have yet to learn it, look at the MBOX. Again, depends on your budget but you've got a lot of options.


Fwiw, the audio jack on a Macbook is both input and output.

Apple uses the CTIA standard for wiring up their audio jacks...

CITA wiring


You could look for something like this, just make sure the piece you look at is CTIA rather than OMTP.

  • Is there a difference between using this instead of an audio interface if I solely want to connect a single guitar?
    – user1
    Commented Feb 9, 2015 at 22:35
  • @user1, As far as the mechanics of getting sound in and out of the computer, no, there is no difference. If, however, you are interested in the quality of the sound, most definitely. This will suffice if you just want to get your feet wet, but if you're looking to produce something of quality, you should certainly look into getting an audio interface.
    – JoshP
    Commented Feb 10, 2015 at 13:16

If you only have one headphone jack then you can't fix the processing problem. Amplitube requires you to plug and input(the guitar) and then feed an output cable into some kind of speaker, it can be any speaker although a guitar amp is what you really need. So you need two headphone jacks.

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