Guitars with soul for a resonance of life
“Verbis defectis musica incipit”
The ancient castle of Dowina – today’s Devin – is situated on the junction of the rivers Danube and Morava, between Bratislava (Slovakia) and Vienna (Austria). The 9th Century Latin (864 AD) Fulda Chronicle (Annales Fuldenses) says “Dowina – id est puella“. This translates as Dowina means a girl in ancient Slavonic language. Nowadays the castle ruins remind us of an era of great glory and are a luminous inspiration for sensitive artists. This magical place also gave birth to Dowina guitars. The guitars derive their name from this famous castle and its heritage.
Our history started in 1979 in Devin Village with the creation of a violin workshop overlooking the castle. Afterwards came the concept of unique guitars, inspired by the violin maker’s know- how, experiences and intuition, each one perfect and individual. As from 2010 we are moved to our larger property in Devinska Nova Ves, encompassing a production center, warehouse, custom shop and administration.
It all starts with the selection of the materials used. Of crucial importance for guitar sound is the acoustic quality of the top plate and bracings, requiring superb stiffness with little weight. As a standard we utilize either selected Sitka or Cedar from Alaska / West Coast USA. Furthermore we use selected Spruce from the Dolomite Alps – Val di Fiemme, Italy. Among other superior features it has an extraordinary acoustic ratio “A”. For the technically minded this is the ratio of the speed of sound through the wood (m/s) to the wood density (kg/m³), up to a phenomenal 16.0 m4kg–1s–1. This figure is up to 35 % better than standard tonewood spruce (e.g. German Spruce, Engelmann Spruce and the like). It is no wonder that Stradivari, Amati, Guarneri and other famous violin makers used Dolomite Spruce from Val di Fiemme.
Our production program
Solid top Antique series – models Puella, Rustica, Marus and Danubius incorporate optimized soud quality/playability/value-to-price ratio features. They are designed as a universal music instrument for daily playing and practicing.
Other than in violin construction, development of flattop guitars shape is not finalized yet and gives enough space for new ideas, experiments and improvisations. This is also the idea realized in crafting of all solid Vintage series models. Their names are not assigned randomly but are inspired by the local wine varieties – Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Cabernet. Advanced guitars of Vintage series satisfy even the most demanding musicians; those who appreciate superior guitar sound just as a connisseur appreciates superior wine. They are individually created with application of similar production philosophy as applied for a master violin. Among other secrets this means:
– superior tone-wood selection
– individual graduatin the thickness of the top in specific areas to allow the to to flex more near the edges, and hence, gain more of a deep, fundamental tone
– discrete bracing design according to top´s features
– tops are individually finally tuned to a basic harmonic tones in optimal tonal scale range started with H for more bass reflection and chord play, C for finger picking up to D for solos in a band application
– each instrument is solitary crafted for professional application by our master luthiers
As the name gives, our Master series models are intended for professional application with the utmost challenge for tonal and handcrafting perfection. There are jewels and investment with raising value. Crafting of each master model is according to the individual tonal and material requirements of the final user. We can offer combination of very best top plates together with solid back and sides made from superior wood. Master models are Amber Road (Rosewood and flamed Maple), Acero (flamed Maple), Wenge, Granadillo and finally our flagship Cocobolo. Each guitar is unique and takes many hours of master crafting before it became state of the art between handcrafted guitars,
With final quality control we can give our promise that each one of our Dowina guitars will play beautifully and easily. It is an instrument from musician to a musician, form friend to a friend…