Rec: audio input level too high? simple attenuator or matching circuit please

I’m trying to record TV from my MOD box to my UPMOST external USB TV tuner/capture card.
The audio sounds muddy and to use an old am radio term over modulated like the input level is too high. Is this the case?

What I do know. Digtial TV capture is great! Both audio and sound. So I guess the encoding to the video format end is ok.
Analog video in is eh… good enough! The analog audio is the problem.
My MOD box used to have the ability to adjust the volume via the remote control. That feature has mysteriously disappeared.

I was thinking of buying a stereo variable resister putting it in a box and using that as a simple volume control. Would that work? OR do I need a more sophisticated circuit? I know nothing about theory but can slap together something from a schematic. Any ideas? Can you draw me something to build. Thanks.

Is there an option on the USB tuner/capture card’s software to lower the input volume? Or on the computer itself?

Yes, there is, but it just doesn’t sound right. I think that the actual signal may be too strong for the input of the device itself
If the only volume control that is available is from the “mixer” of the sound card, isn’t the volume control being done at the sound card level, not actually varying the gain of the device’s inputs?

So you think it’s an impedance problem?

Just to check, it’s line out from the mod box and line in in the sound card? No mic connections or anything being used?

Overdriving an input usually results in distortion, not a “muddy” sound. Still, if you want to try attenuating it, use a 1K potentiometer (variable resistor). Get a log taper if you can (linear will work, but the adjustment range will be all ‘squashed up’ at one end). Signal comes in on one of the outer pins. Signal comes out from middle pin. Other outer pin is connected to ground.

Alternatively, you can just stick a low-value resistor from signal to ground, to load down the output amp. The actual value will depend on the output impedance of the driving amplifier, but try 100R to start with.

Also, make sure you’re taking the output from the line output (usually a phono jack), not a headphone socket. If you have no choice in the matter (you only have a headphone socket), use the loading method.

oops, irishstu just said much the same thing.