This paper describes our submission (named clac) to the 2016 Discriminating Similar Languages (DSL) shared task. We participated in the closed Sub-task 1 (Set A) with two separate machine learning techniques. The first approach is a character based Convolution Neural Network with a bidirectional long short term memory (BiLSTM) layer (CLSTM), which achieved an accuracy of 78.45% with minimal tuning. The second approach is a character-based n-gram model. This last approach achieved an accuracy of 88.45% which is close to the accuracy of 89.38% achieved by the best submission, and allowed us to rank #7 overall.