Thanks for all the feedback on this! Definitely have a lot more options than I was previously aware of to look into.
And yes, Billy, the direct sound of the guitar is terrible. I've managed to get some decent tone with a chain of PSP plugs, but it's still wonky and unbalanced. Time to upgrade, for sure. Or just give up on performing out with a laptop altogether and use an actual amp for once...
yeah let me know how this falls for you. I've been considering getting a DI/amp model for my synth...and, as I probably wrote on 12k forum v1 - I love playing through amps, even if I'm using my computer...so maybe I can convince you to just spend a LOT more money and get a really classy amp?