So your recording is too loud if anything (as expected) and the deterioration after 2 seconds is in the recording.
Does this laptop have an internal mic or not? Exactly what is the full name of the recording device you have chosen in Device Toolbar? If you have an internal mic, make sure you choose the “External microphone” recording device, not “Microphone”.
Did you turn off all recording enhancements for the external microphone? See http://manual.audacityteam.org/o/man/faq_recording_troubleshooting.html#enhancements.
The settings are, Windows sound device then, Microphone Realtek (High Definition) Speakers Realtek (High Definition)
There is 2 inputs on my Laptop one is for a Mic the other headphones, I don’t know if there is an internal Mic.
Right-click over the speaker icon by the system clock, then choose “Recording Devices”. Right-click in empty space and choose “Show disabled devices” then right-click again and check “Show Disconnected Devices”. Do you see any other mic devices appear?
Done that, the only thing that comes on is mixer and mute speakers there is no, ‘Show recording devices’
Sorry, done it again and a Mic comes up. and then stereo mix
If you want, after showing disabled and disconnected devices in Windows Sound as I described, you can restart Audacity then open Help > Audio Device Info… top right of Audacity. Press OK then Save.
Attach the saved deviceinfo.txt file for us. Please see here for how to attach files: https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/how-to-attach-files-to-forum-posts/24026/1
Then we can see what audio devices you have.
Is this it?
deviceinfo.txt (4.79 KB)
If you believe that microphone is the external microphone you are using then I still suggest you turn off its enhancements ( see Audacity Manual ) .
Also go to the web site of your laptop manufacturer and download and install (or reinstall) the latest Windows 7 audio drivers for your computer model.
Or buy an interface like the UCA202 to connect the mixer output to, then connect the UCA 202 to a spare USB port on the computer.
Thanks for all your help, I’ve just ordered a guitar Interface off E-bay for £22, I’ll give that a try, thanks again.