Cutthroat Audio Down Brownie

Ron W

Cable Guy
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
266

JedimasterPaul

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
711
Has anyone compared the Down Brownie to a Crema Wheat? If yes what are the differences and/or similarities?
I thought the Crema Wheat was a tweaked Tweed Deluxe (i.e.,, 5e3). Wanted one of those for a while, but never got one. . The Down Brownie is a Brown Deluxe, 6g3 with some convenient mods.

I have owned Tweed Deluxes before (just not the CW), but for me I prefer the Brownface Deluxe. DB is great! Can't wait to get the Penguin I have on order to go with it. Too bad Ron doesn't make a 6g11 reverb unit though.

Others can probably do a better job of comparing 5e3 vs 6g3, but as I recall the 5e3 has even less headroom than the 6g3. But the 6g3 overdriven sound is tighter. Cleans on both sounds great to me - as in cleans with a lot going on, as opposed to sterile cleans. Sorry, that's probably not very helpful
 

ebenezer

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,143
Has anyone compared the Down Brownie to a Crema Wheat? If yes what are the differences and/or similarities?
I actually sold my Crema Wheat for a Down Brownie back in the day. So to be fair I didn’t get to do a proper a/b, but I do remember what my initial impressions of the DB were compared to the CW. I remember thinking the DB was more forgiving than the CW. The CW was much stiffer feeling than the DB, and I assume that was part of some of the CW mods to boost the headroom of the typical 5e3 type amp. It worked, but in my opinion lost to magic of the 5e3 in the process. Don’t get me wrong, the Crema was a great sounding amp, I just wanted a louder 5e3, and in my opinion it wasn’t that. The DB isn’t that either, but I never wanted it to be. It can sound like a 5e3, but it’s more of n feel than sound. It does it’s own thing which I love. Anyways, I hope that helps.
 

Ron W

Cable Guy
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
266
All you cats and kittens, don't forget that @Ron W makes cables that are most excellent as well. I am rockin' two of his Royal Wulff cables for my humbucky guitars.

Plus, Ron is a great cat and salt of the earth type of guy. Highly recommended to do business with.
Thank you, Fred! Glad to hear you're digging the cables.
 

Gallery

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,520
Too bad Ron doesn't make a 6g11 reverb unit though.
6G11 is the Vibrolux. You mean a 6G15?

I’ve been bugging Ron to make a Reverb unit since 2017. I wanted one to match my DB. But what I really want Ron to tackle is the 6G16 Vibroverb. I can only imagine what glorious magic he could make out of that circuit.
 

JedimasterPaul

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
711
6G11 is the Vibrolux. You mean a 6G15?

I’ve been bugging Ron to make a Reverb unit since 2017. I wanted one to match my DB. But what I really want Ron to tackle is the 6G16 Vibroverb. I can only imagine what glorious magic he could make out of that circuit.
thats what I meant of course, all those numbers run together after a while
 

ajoel32

Member
Messages
387
Just got my Down Brownie this afternoon and spent just a few minutes with it. Very early initial impressions: it’s a very nice amp! I A/B’d it with my Swart AST. Definitely in the same family. I found the attack on the DB to sound harder, and the overdrive a bit harsher/more aggressive. The Swart felt a little sweeter, less attack on the note, a little warmer. And a little boxier. The DB sounded bigger. The DB can do cleans very early on the dial, and by rolling guitar volume. Obviously I’ll need to learn this amp to coax out the best. And I’ll continue comparing with the Swart. At this point, I don’t see the need for me to have both, as they overlap quite a bit to my ears. Which makes sense in a way, as I’ve always heard the Swart was somewhere between a Blackface and Tweed.
 

Gallery

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,520
Just got my Down Brownie this afternoon and spent just a few minutes with it. Very early initial impressions: it’s a very nice amp! I A/B’d it with my Swart AST. Definitely in the same family. I found the attack on the DB to sound harder, and the overdrive a bit harsher/more aggressive. The Swart felt a little sweeter, less attack on the note, a little warmer. And a little boxier. The DB sounded bigger. The DB can do cleans very early on the dial, and by rolling guitar volume. Obviously I’ll need to learn this amp to coax out the best. And I’ll continue comparing with the Swart. At this point, I don’t see the need for me to have both, as they overlap quite a bit to my ears. Which makes sense in a way, as I’ve always heard the Swart was somewhere between a Blackface and Tweed.
Awesome! The Brown Deluxe cabinet is so good. I'm always afraid small combos will have that boxy small amp tone, but the Brown Deluxe cab is so open and big sounding. I've hooked up many other amps to my DB cabinet and they all sounded great through that cab. I often play my Benson Monarch through the DB cab because it sounds so good through there. In fact, I want to pick up a head switcher so I can run both the DB and Monarch into the DB cab and footswitch between the two using the Monarch for cleans and the DB for dirt. That would be my ideal two channel rig. Try connecting your Swart to the speaker in the DB and A/B them that way for a fair comparison. I've heard the same that Swarts typically fall in the Brown range, but I have no first hand experience.

For cleans you'll really want to spend some time with the DB and a single coil guitar. While the classic combo is a Les Paul and Brown Deluxe and together they make that instantly recognizable sound, a Strat or Tele open up more range in the clean and low gain tones. I have an HSS Suhr Classic Pro and having both the humbucker and single coils in the same guitar with the DB makes a big difference.
 

JK1965

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,147
Just got my Down Brownie this afternoon and spent just a few minutes with it. Very early initial impressions: it’s a very nice amp! I A/B’d it with my Swart AST. Definitely in the same family. I found the attack on the DB to sound harder, and the overdrive a bit harsher/more aggressive. The Swart felt a little sweeter, less attack on the note, a little warmer. And a little boxier. The DB sounded bigger. The DB can do cleans very early on the dial, and by rolling guitar volume. Obviously I’ll need to learn this amp to coax out the best. And I’ll continue comparing with the Swart. At this point, I don’t see the need for me to have both, as they overlap quite a bit to my ears. Which makes sense in a way, as I’ve always heard the Swart was somewhere between a Blackface and Tweed.
That was pretty quick! Where did you get one so fast?
Those Swart amp are indeed nice. I think I mentioned that their booth was directly across from Ron’s at the 2018 summer NAMM. So there was plenty of time to hear and check out their amps and they have some great sounding stuff.
The Brownie is going to be angrier when wound up for sure but that is what sounds great in a mix and why it records so well. As Gallery said, single coils will open up lots of tonal options on the cleaner side of things. Also running the master way up or all the way will give you more clean headroom as you are then not using mostly the preamp section.

As to one or the other, they are different so why choose? It’s nice to have different flavors available. I love having the options as it keeps things fresh. No matter how great, we need variety. Can’t eat my favorite food every single day.

You are correct about it sounding big. That is something everyone says when they play it or hear it. Way bigger sounding than it looks.

Congrats! Have fun with it!
 

ajoel32

Member
Messages
387
Awesome! The Brown Deluxe cabinet is so good. I'm always afraid small combos will have that boxy small amp tone, but the Brown Deluxe cab is so open and big sounding. I've hooked up many other amps to my DB cabinet and they all sounded great through that cab. I often play my Benson Monarch through the DB cab because it sounds so good through there. In fact, I want to pick up a head switcher so I can run both the DB and Monarch into the DB cab and footswitch between the two using the Monarch for cleans and the DB for dirt. That would be my ideal two channel rig. Try connecting your Swart to the speaker in the DB and A/B them that way for a fair comparison. I've heard the same that Swarts typically fall in the Brown range, but I have no first hand experience.

For cleans you'll really want to spend some time with the DB and a single coil guitar. While the classic combo is a Les Paul and Brown Deluxe and together they make that instantly recognizable sound, a Strat or Tele open up more range in the clean and low gain tones. I have an HSS Suhr Classic Pro and having both the humbucker and single coils in the same guitar with the DB makes a big difference.
My main axe is a Danocaster Tele. I also play a Gibson VOS ‘63 ES-335.
 

ajoel32

Member
Messages
387
That was pretty quick! Where did you get one so fast?
Those Swart amp are indeed nice. I think I mentioned that their booth was directly across from Ron’s at the 2018 summer NAMM. So there was plenty of time to hear and check out their amps and they have some great sounding stuff.
The Brownie is going to be angrier when wound up for sure but that is what sounds great in a mix and why it records so well. As Gallery said, single coils will open up lots of tonal options on the cleaner side of things. Also running the master way up or all the way will give you more clean headroom as you are then not using mostly the preamp section.

As to one or the other, they are different so why choose? It’s nice to have different flavors available. I love having the options as it keeps things fresh. No matter how great, we need variety. Can’t eat my favorite food every single day.

You are correct about it sounding big. That is something everyone says when they play it or hear it. Way bigger sounding than it looks.

Congrats! Have fun with it!
I bought it used. And yes, I ran it with the master volume wide open. Single coil (Danocaster). I’m not really that concerned about the Swart sounding a little boxier, because I’ll be mainly recording.

I do think they sound similar. Not exact. But maybe not different enough to keep both.

The DB is surprisingly lighter than the Swart.
 

David Garner

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
6,000
Hi, folks, I've read through most of the thread and I am absolutely smitten with the idea of this amp. I currently play a Deluxe Reverb, an 18 Watt Marshall and a Mesa Express 5:25. My plan is to sell my AC30 (too loud, too heavy) and the Mesa and get one of these to replace them as an all purpose grab and go practice amp and gigging amp.

Does anyone here regularly gig a Down Brownie? My cover band does classic rock which requires some dead clean, but mostly edge of breakup to AC/DC levels of gain, and my originals band is the same. So basically a classic rock setup. This seems ideal, but I want to ensure there is enough headroom and open-ness to the amp to use in that capacity before I drop this kind of money on one. Gigs are almost always mic'd up for us, and I can use the Deluxe Reverb if I need to in order to get above the drummer if not. But rehearsals are 100% unmic'd and I want to be sure I can get the volume on the cleans I need from this amp without having to mic it up or bring a larger amp.

Also, shame on whichever one of you got the one from The Amp House. Now I have to wait for them to get another one in stock before I drive over there ;)
 

JK1965

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,147
Hi, folks, I've read through most of the thread and I am absolutely smitten with the idea of this amp. I currently play a Deluxe Reverb, an 18 Watt Marshall and a Mesa Express 5:25. My plan is to sell my AC30 (too loud, too heavy) and the Mesa and get one of these to replace them as an all purpose grab and go practice amp and gigging amp.

Does anyone here regularly gig a Down Brownie? My cover band does classic rock which requires some dead clean, but mostly edge of breakup to AC/DC levels of gain, and my originals band is the same. So basically a classic rock setup. This seems ideal, but I want to ensure there is enough headroom and open-ness to the amp to use in that capacity before I drop this kind of money on one. Gigs are almost always mic'd up for us, and I can use the Deluxe Reverb if I need to in order to get above the drummer if not. But rehearsals are 100% unmic'd and I want to be sure I can get the volume on the cleans I need from this amp without having to mic it up or bring a larger amp.

Also, shame on whichever one of you got the one from The Amp House. Now I have to wait for them to get another one in stock before I drive over there ;)
He who hesitates...... these amps don’t sit around long in stores.

This is a GREAT rock amp for crunchy to glorious tube distortion and with pedals even more killer gain. Headroom in a band situation is not likely going to be its thing. You said dead clean. It has great cleans but not at the volume you’ll likely need on stage.
If I were in your shoes I’d run my DR and DB with an ABY, problem solved. The DR would be the clean channel and DB the dirt channel. It’s a killer setup and I do it often right here in the living room. If footprint is an issue I’d use a stand to stack them.

I know a lot of guys don’t want to bother with 2 amps but I come from a time when we used a half stack at minimum and usually a full stack so moving 2 light combos is a walk in the park.

These amps are special and I wouldn’t let the clean thing get in the way of having one. That’s me though.

For recording I actually use this amp for almost all the clean parts. Having a Deluxe Reverb too should tell you how much I think of the Brownies cleans.
 




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