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7 Best Metal Guitar VST

It’s hard to describe tones – so we end up using adjectives that make no sense unless you are a musician. Words like crunchy, smooth, screaming, thick, ice picky, and many more that just confuse anyone listening in on the conversation. The tones we all search for in metal have a specific sound that you just know when you hear it. 

We have pulled together some of the absolute best choices for digital guitar tones. These companies have all gone above and beyond in the creation of these tones whether they are emulating a specific artist or just a classic amp that has been used to make history. 

What To Look For When Choosing a Metal Guitar VST Plugin

With this list of the Best Metal Guitar VSTs, we put together a guide to help you figure out the best choice for you. These are all important pieces to keep in mind whenever you look for new plugins and equipment. If you are looking to get a broader sound than just metal, check out our look into the Best Guitar VST Bundles

Pricing

Guitar VSTs can run up the price depending on the company and what all is included. Obviously the more that is included, the more you will likely be paying. Most of these packages and single amps can be found at discounts throughout the year if you keep an eye on their websites. 

Compatibility – System Requirements

The last thing you want to happen is buy a new VST and download it only to find that nothing is compatible. So always make sure you check how it will work with your computer so it won’t crash every 5 seconds. 

DAW Compatibility

As long as you have kept your DAW up to date you should not run into many issues with using these VSTs. Some of them even work on their own independent systems like Amplitube who has created their own DAW geared specifically around their amps and guitar equipment. 

If you are new to the world of recording and interfaces, check out our look at Sountrap. It is perfect for beginners and has many great guitar presets for a bunch of different styles. 

Frequency of Use

Some of these amps touch many different genres and can be adjusted to work in other genres as well. Take into account how often you feel you will use this as well as what all you might use it on. Is this the right tool for what you want to accomplish?

Skill Level

If you are looking for the Best Metal Guitar VSTs, you are probably a semi-experienced guitarist who either knows how to get the sounds you want out of an amp or you are looking to learn. In either case, these are all perfect for you.

The VSTs you see will provide professional-level quality sounds all with tutorials and presets that will push you in the right direction. 

7 Best Metal Guitar VSTs

Here in no particular order, are our choices for the best metal guitar VSTs. 

1. PRS SuperModels – Waves

PRS SuperModels
PRS SuperModels – Waves

The PRS SuperModels are all that you would expect and more from an amazing company like PRS. Like their guitars, these amp VSTs are able to conquer a variety of sounds from amazing cleans to head banging chugs.

This VST specifically focuses on the Archon which is the high gain model of the collection. Both David Townsend and Chris Rakestraw (Megadeth Producer) have created presets included for this package.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Thrash and Much More
  • Price: $129
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for FL Studio

System Requirements:

MacWindows
Memory8 GB RAM8 GB free disk space on the system drive8 GB RAM8 GB free disk space on the system drive
Operating System10.12.6-10.15Windows 10 64 bit

2. Toneforge Misha Mansoor – JST

Toneforge Misha Mansoor
Toneforge Misha Mansoor – JST

Misha Mansoor is well known specifically for his incredible guitar playing in the band Periphery. He has developed his own company creating an incredible distortion pedal (the Precision Drive) that is just a beast in itself.

A digital copy of this pedal is included in the package that Misha has designed with Joey Sturgis Tones. if you get the chance, check out Ole Englund’s video about the Misha Mansoor Toneforge. He also does reviews of many other metal VSTs.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Progressive Metal, Djent, and Metalcore
  • Price: $149.00
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Studio One

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory8 GB RAM8 GB RAM
Operating SystemOS X 10.6.8 and aboveWindows 7 and above

3. Amplitube Joe Satriani – IK Multimedia

Amplitube Joe Satriani
Amplitube Joe Satriani – IK Multimedia

Joe Satriani has built a career off of his crazy guitar playing and lightning fingers. His style is unique and these sounds can be built into any great tone. With this package, you get 5 stompboxes, 3 amplifiers, 3 cabinets, and 4 rack FX.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Progressive
  • Price: $99.99
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Reaper

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested
Operating SystemOS X 10.7 or laterWindows 7, 8, or 10

4. Guitar Rig – Native Instruments

Guitar Rig
Guitar Rig – Native Instruments

The 2 amp heads I would focus on for great metal tones would be the Gratifier which is modeled after the Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier and the Van 51 which was made to sound like the classic Eddie Van Halen tones.

Overall there is a lot more in this package that can be utilized but for purely metal tones, those 2 would be the best choices.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Glam Metal/ Heavy Metal
  • Price: $199.00
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Reason

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory4 GB RAM2 GB RAM
Operating SystemOS 10.12 through latest updateWindows 7, 8, or 10

5. Amplitube MESA Boogie – IK Multimedia

Amplitube Mesa Boogie
Amplitube Mesa Boogie – IK Multimedia

The Mesa Boogie is a staple in the metal world. It has been used on countless tracks and for many amazing recordings and you have the opportunity to use the different types in the comfort of your home studio for a fraction of the cost.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Thrash Metal
  • Price: $149.99
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Logic

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested
Operating SystemOS X 10.7 or laterWindows 7, 8, or 10

6. Toneforge Menace – JST

Toneforge Menace
Toneforge Menace – JST

Mentioned above was the Misha Mansoor special with JST, here is one of the amazing amps that helped JST make its name. The Toneforge Menace is a chest-beating amp that you can riff, chug, and play leads through with ease. To get an idea of what all this amp setup can do, check out a video from JST here.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Core/Djent
  • Price: $79.00
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Pro Tools

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory8 GB RAM8 GB RAM
Operating SystemOS X 10.6.8 and aboveWindows 7 and above

7. Dimebag Darrell CFH Collection – IK Multimedia

Dimebag Darrell CFH Collection
Dimebag Darrell CFH Collection – IK Multimedia

Groove and Heavy Metal icon Dimebag Darrell made a name for himself for his screaming tones and lightning guitar playing.

With a focus on the album “Cowboys From Hell,” IK Multimedia put together this package that goes for Dimebag’s classic sound in both amps and pedals. Included are 5 stompboxes, 2 amplifiers, and 2 cabinets.

  • Who’s it for? Metal Producers and Musicians – Heavy Metal/Groove Metal
  • Price: $99.99
  • DAW Support: All popular DAWs supported, good for Cubase

System Requirements: 

MacWindows
Memory2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested2 GB RAM4 GB Suggested
Operating SystemOS X 10.7 or laterWindows 7, 8, or 10

Metal or Die

Metal is a staple in much of society, you can find incredible subcultures built into many places all over the world. Finding the gear you want and at a decent price is not easy all the time.

With the option of working digitally, you risk no chance of breaking your gear from a clumsy roadie or bandmate spilling a beer on your equipment. If you are also wanting to make full songs and play along with drums while you are writing, there are some incredible Drum VSTs out there that you should try. 

If you are interested in learning about other VSTs and general plugins, take a look at our catalog of reviews and comparisons here.