Review: Emotional Guitars Bundle by 8Dio


8Dio has given us a unique take on a guitar sample library. Emotional Guitars rejects conventional articulations in favour of a mood-driven approach that offers the composer a quick and direct line to the heart of the matter.

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Review: Emotional Guitars Bundle by 8Dio

For Emotional Guitars, 8Dio have aimed to create content with a focus that is more about how the sound feels, as opposed to playing a particular articulation. Almost two years in development, the bundle collection includes all three of the Emotional Guitar series – Pads, Multi-Samples and Rhythms – at a considerable saving. Together they cover a wide variety of playing styles across 32 different emotions, deriving from the work of psychologist Robert Plutchik, that can be mixed and matched to taste.

Emotional Guitars Bundle sells for $298 from 8Dio


The goal of this library was pretty ambitious – to encapsulate the entire range of human emotions and present each one of those to the composer using only guitar sounds, in order that they can then convey those primal instincts to their audience. It broadly achieves those aims, but sounds and emotions are so personal not all of them are going to match. One person’s ecstasy is another person’s apprehension. So, to get the best from this library it pays to be open minded as to what each group of emotions might offer and don’t be too led purely by the name.

This will be very useful for any media composer across a wide range of end uses and genres, so it gets a big thumbs up for flexibility. Of course, it is limited to one single instrument and that itself will have restrictions, but many of the sounds were not obviously guitars and bordered on organic synth textures at times.

The interface is easily navigable with a range of options. The stack and stretch functions amplify the sheer range of sounds hugely, as does the transform impulse response engine. Not all of the parameters worked as expected, particularly the rather tame attack and release knobs, which was a bit of a shame. I would have liked the rhythms to have had more percussive content and the pads can be tricky to use as some of them have harmonies, whilst others are simply root notes. Arguably, they could have used less emotions, as they can sound quite similar when the emotions are naturally closely related.

Cost-wise it’s reasonable at the current bundle price, though the individual sets might be a touch on the high side. However, barely a week goes by without an 8Dio sale, so if you are on a budget I am sure in time these will be available for a superb price.

Overall it was not a “wow” moment, but often the most useful libraries are not initially and I think it will serve well over the long term as a way to quickly inject guitar tones that have the perfect vibe for your composition. Especially for those who either don’t play guitar or lack the time or gear to spend ages dialing in just the right amp tone and pedal settings this library needs serious consideration. Some might argue it borders on the gimmicky, though the exciting thing for me is how it acknowledges that emotion is not just in the notes we play, but also within the inherit sound characteristics of the instrument we are using. With 32 such emotions to play with, it goes far beyond distortion = angry and shimmery delay = joy. It’s way more nuanced than that. Above all it’s a brilliantly inspirational tool, as you are guided by the sound itself, leading you to unexpected and exciting places.


Emotional Guitars: Bundle downloads as 7.5GB, compressed down from 17GB of original content

The 48k/24bit stereo wav samples derive from one player with a variety of guitars and various pedal, amp and other processing combinations.

The bundle comprises three separate products – Pads, Multi-Samples, and Rhythms that are also sold separately.

Each is divided into 32 articulations that correspond to emotions on Plutchik’s wheel.

The full version of Kontakt is required.

Emotional Guitars Bundle sells for $298 from 8Dio


Demos of Emotional Guitars Bundle by 8Dio


Videos of Emotional Guitars Bundle by 8Dio

Contributor Sam Burt reviews Emotional Guitars Bundle by 8Dio
“A unique take on a guitar sample library rejecting conventional articulations in favour of a mood-driven approach offering composers a quick & direct line to the heart of the matter.”