Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Dowina produce incredible hand crafted acoustic guitars. Using the best tone woods these guitars are wonderful to play and beautiful to look at.

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DouglasM
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Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by DouglasM »

Hi,

I've recently discovered Dowina guitars, and am seriously considering ordering a slightly customised version of the Cabernet DCE Dreadnought cutaway in cedar, with mic based electronics, as I hate the piezo sound. So I guess that will be either the LR Baggs Anthem system (I'm not sure if Dowina supply the LR Baggs Lyric system) or Fishman Elipse Blend system.

I am used to playing shorter scale Godin made acoustic guitars with the 43mm nut width. I feel comfortable with these, but want something a bit better in quality, and I believe this could be Dowina!

I have thought about sticking to a dreadnought, as I will mainly be using it to accompany my voice at gigs, but also want a versatile guitar that can be used for strumming, fingerstyle, flatpicking, soling etc, but also that will be great for recording. The GA size also looks great, but I can't afford to buy two models yet :-(

My problem is that I cannot 'try before I buy', so am a little concerned at the longer scale length and the 45mm nut, although I believe that I can have a customised nut width between 43mm - 48mm for this model.

I have a few questions:

Does anyone own this model?

Is it exactly the same size as a standard dreadnought cutaway, or is a bit smaller/more comfortable than others to play?

Was there an older version of this model that had a shorter scale?

Any thoughts as to which electronics system would most closely replicate the natural acoustics of this guitar?

I presume that a less intrusive pickup system (that didn't involve cutting a hole in the side of the guitar) would help to maintain the original acoustic properties of the guitar?

Any advice anyone could give me would be appreciated :-)

Thank you!



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Saul
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by Saul »

Hi Douglas, welcome to the forums :)

It won't come as news to most people that I am a huge fan of Dowina guitars but I do have a selection of other brands too so it is not all one-way traffic here :)

I do have the Cabernet DCE but it is out on loan...extended loan it seems :think: but anyway, yes a fantastic guitar.

So to your questions;
Is it exactly the same size as a standard dreadnought cutaway, or is a bit smaller/more comfortable than others to play?
It is pretty much the same size as the Godin Metropolis if you know that guitar?
Was there an older version of this model that had a shorter scale?
Older version yes but same scale length as far as I know.
Any thoughts as to which electronics system would most closely replicate the natural acoustics of this guitar?
I am not a massive fan of onboard electronics but the L.R. Baggs 'Lyric' gets my vote. Although the Anthem is pretty good too. I don't know if Dowina are using the Lyric at the moment but they are pretty accommodating of customer requests so always worth asking :)

I presume that a less intrusive pickup system (that didn't involve cutting a hole in the side of the guitar) would help to maintain the original acoustic properties of the guitar?
On the Antique series with layered back & sides, I would say it makes no difference but I definitely don't want any wood cut out of an all-solid construction guitar! I think Stan Marinov who owns Dowina would agree with that :)

Not sure any of that helps but I am happy to answer any other questions you might have.
Saul
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DouglasM
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by DouglasM »

Hi Saul,

Thank you very much for answering my questions :-)

I was asked by Dowina UK to email Erika directly about buying a customised Cabernet DCE (which I have now done), so hopefully she will get back to me in the next few days.

I agree about the Lyric, and also feel that this will be the least intrusive fitting (as long as Dowina can be accommodating). I certainly don't want a hole cut in an all solid guitar!

I have a few further questions:

Do you know what the differences between the old Cabernet model and the new one are?

I'm used to playing shorter scale Godin made dreadnoughts (so I am familiar with the Metropolis size, as well as Seagull/Norman short scale dreadnought sizes). I loved my Seagull Entourage Rustic cutaway that I used to have!

Do you find the playability of the Dowina models to be easy, bearing in mind the long scale length?

What is the fretboard radius of the guitar?

What do you love so much about the Cabernet DCE? Do you have any videos of it?

Do you know if the deluxe Dowina gig bag has a good neck support for the guitar when housed inside?

Sorry about all the questions, but I would really be taking a punt by buying the guitar before trying... I just have a good feeling about this brand! :-)

Thank you!

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DouglasM
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by DouglasM »

Hi Saul,

Did you receive my previous reply?

Best regards

Douglas

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Saul
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by Saul »

Hi Douglas

I thought I had responded but I must have gotten sidetracked and closed the browser before I finished.

I don't know the radius of the fretboard. Erika will be able to advise on that though. The only thing I can say is the fretboard is pretty flat, not too much of a curve in it.

Differences between the older Cabernet and the new one? I have not played the older version. Cosmetically they look identical. I think the only difference I can think of is that the fingerboard is now ebony where previously it was rosewood. Back and sides are rosewood and for the top, there is a choice of US Sitka Spruce, Canadian Cedar or Dolomite spruce.

The Cabernet or Ceres in the UK is a lovely guitar. Superb build quality and wonderful sound however it is not my favourite guitar from the Vintage range. That would be the Chardonnay/Sol. I just prefer the American walnut back and sides and mine has the rosewood fingerboard. I posted a couple of photos on the forum here viewtopic.php?f=168&t=10403
Saul
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DouglasM
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by DouglasM »

Hi Saul,

Thanks for the reply!

I've since been in contact with Erika, who has been very helpful.

Your Chardonnay/Sol guitar looks lovely. I'm waiting for Dowina to begin production on short scale length guitars before ordering one. Erika says that they are looking into this option and will keep me posted.

So I just have to decide between the DCE and GACE shape. As long as I can do heavy strumming on a GAC model, then I may go for that size. I'd love to have a Bona Vida model as some point also... perhaps a nylon string version! :-)

Once the lockdown is over, I'll see if there are any London guitar store retailers who have some Dowina guitars that I can try out.

Thanks again !

Douglas

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Saul
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Re: Dowina Cabernet DCE cedar advice

Unread post by Saul »

Erika is a big fan of the Bona Vida nylon string guitar. It is her design if I remember correctly :)

No problems strumming on the GAC. Sounds wonderful (Y)
Saul
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Dowina Acoustic Guitars: Dowina Cabernet DC
Dowina Chardonnay GAC DS - Dowina Rustica GAC - Dowina Marus - Dowina Puella

Please Note: This site is supported by Amazon Associate and other affiliate links. Any links in my posts may lead to products on the Amazon website or other vendors websites. These will not incur any extra cost to you but may support the running costs of the site via the generation of a small commission should you choose to purchase a product.

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