Top Features of Shreddage Hydra: The Ultimate 8 String Guitar VST for Guitarists and Music Producers

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In this review I wanted to talk about a sampler instrument I have been using for a while.

In the past few years I’ve been utilizing midi quite a bit in my writing process and it’s been an absolute game changer. One of my favorite sampled guitars is Impact Soundworks released Shreddage Hydra, an 8 string guitar VST that delivers high-quality, realistic guitar sounds for a wide range of applications. In this review, I’ll be diving deep into the features of Shreddage Hydra and sharing my experience using it for songwriting, preproduction, and even mixing.

Key Features of Shreddage Hydra:

Shreddage Hydra offers a wide variety of articulations, making it highly versatile for different playing styles. The VST includes multiple pickup options, enabling you to tailor the tone of the guitar to your specific needs. The advanced engine, TACT 2.0, allows for total control over the articulations, while the Console feature provides a modular FX rack and mixer for further customization. Shreddage Hydra also supports MIDI capabilities, including double and quad-tracking, as well as MIDI guitar input.

In-depth Review of Top Features:

Articulations and playability:

The realism and expressiveness of Shreddage Hydra are impressive, with an extensive range of articulations that can be easily switched using keyswitches or MIDI CC. In comparison to other guitar VSTs I have used, Shreddage Hydra stands out in terms of playability and the ability to create lifelike performances.

Tone quality and customization:

Shreddage Hydra delivers a high-quality sound that can be easily adapted to various genres. The multiple pickup options and customizable parameters make it easy to achieve the desired tone, whether it’s a bright lead or a heavy, palm-muted rhythm. The sound quality in a mix is also impressive, and with the right processing, it’s easy to make the guitar sit perfectly within a track.

User interface and ease of use:

The user interface is intuitive and visually appealing, making it easy to navigate the various controls and parameters. The learning curve to get started is not steep, which means that even if you are new to virtual guitar instruments, you can start creating music quickly. However, with all the flexibility and options Shreddage provides -if you really want to get the most out of the instrument you will need to spend some time exploring all its features. But bottom line: it is super easy to get a dual tracked rhythm guitar part written and sounding great within a matter of minutes.

Preproduction Process: Benefits and Applications:

Shreddage Hydra has been invaluable in my preproduction process. It allows for quick and efficient experimentation with guitar parts during songwriting and arrangement stages, providing a cost-effective alternative to recording live guitars. The high-quality sound makes it perfect for creating demo recordings that accurately represent your ideas, streamlining the workflow. Additionally, Shreddage Hydra facilitates collaboration with other musicians, enabling you to easily share and exchange ideas even in remote settings. The tone is spectacular and allows you to really have a great reference tone for if you decide to track real guitars later.

Use Cases and Target Audience:

As a music producer, I’ve found Shreddage Hydra to be a valuable addition to my DAW. It enhances the production quality and provides an authentic-sounding 8 string guitar that can be used in various projects. For composers, Shreddage Hydra can be an excellent tool for scoring film, TV, and video games, offering creative possibilities beyond traditional guitar sounds. As a guitarist, I appreciate the potential to use Shreddage Hydra in to expand my riff vocabulary. I will often write certain things on the guitar based on feel. If I am writing a guitar part using midi then I tend to be more focused on how the part sounds instead of just regurgitating patterns I know very well with my hands. This can be a challenge to learn later on when I track the guitars for real, but it is a great way to get better at the instrument and build dexterity in your playing.

During the mix process I’ve actually used Hydra in a pinch for a quick fix of an out of tune guitar or a botched edit. In some cases I’ve even been able to layer it with other guitars to provide more depth and variety in the guitar tone.

Pros and Cons of Shreddage Hydra:


1. Comprehensive feature set

2. High-quality sound

3. Flexibility and adaptability


1. System requirements may be demanding for some users

2. Price point may be a consideration for budget-conscious musicians

3. Die hard guitarists won’t want to “cheat” on their instrument


Overall, I’m thoroughly impressed with Shreddage Hydra as both a guitarist and music producer. Its comprehensive feature set, high-quality sound, and adaptability make it a valuable addition to any musician’s toolbox. While the price point and system requirements may be a consideration for some- this plugin lives in my writing template and will stay there until something better comes along, but this thing will be pretty hard to beat!

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