on 7 November 2009
Cracking headphones, just don't give them a poor recording as they show up any failure. Give them good stuff and they create a meaty soundstage with amazing detail and control.
Bass is handled particularly well, and you'll hear things in recordings you never heard before. Only useable in quiet environments as the open back design is more like a suspended mini speaker.
Very comfortable once set correctly. Watch for cans spinning and twisting the heavy cables.
on 13 May 2011
I'm glad I spent some time researching various headphones, and reading reviews of these - they sounded rough out of the box, brash harsh and bloated in the bass department. Listening to Itunes from my laptop through the Fiio E7/E9 combo I decided to try the burn in test, listening to a few favourite tunes when unboxed then playing the 'phones in 8 hour bursts at slowly increasing volumes so as not to damage them.
Apart from a few seconds of curiosity I didn't listen to them through this process - some people think burn in is nonsense and is simply a case of psychological adjustment to what you're listening to. For me this doesn't seem like the case. They sounded so different after 50 hours of use - the harshness was gone, the treble had become extremely detailed and spacious. The bass had appeared, and was deep and precise, perhaps not for bass heads but very natural. Massive Attack's Mezzanine seemed 'real' like the gig I saw 15 years ago, and not full of wicked bass but little clarity as in some hifi set-ups. Soundstage was far more 3 dimensional, even for headphones. Perhaps the most obvious physical difference was being able to listen to them at 11 o'clock on the headphone amp volume dial instead of 9. 9 was unbearable before. Without listening in the interim they must be burning in...?
Perhaps these 'phones are a bit more suited to rock than 'electronica' in some instances as they are very revealing of production values - that said stick some Shpongle on or any well produced electronic driven music, ambient, dance or otherwise, and the simple set up of the Fiio and headphones seems superior in many ways to speakers and CD of much greater value.
If you're in the market for personal listening, have the budget, want pure clarity over emphasis of certain musical content these headphones are a real bargain - read other reviews about their sound leak and initial harshness etc, then try them. They do look a little retro and even cheap, and may not be mega comfortable, but as is often the case in the hifi world looks mean nothing. Enjoy!
on 13 September 2010
Wonderfull detail, BUT too sibilant for my liking and for the price. I have been using my set for about year and it is as hisssssssy now as when it came. The costly addition of Graham Slee Novo headphone amp did not improve the problem in any way. The set construction feels a little primitive too. The cans twist around freely and its too easy to get the cables,(enclosed in a cumbersome loose sleeve) twisted "out of place" with minimal use. The set comes in a flimsy cardboard box and you will need to buy a storage case to protect your investment if you intend to move it about. The cost of the replacement foam ear cups seems somewhat high too.Definitely try before you buy.
on 13 December 2014
The sr225 is perhaps one of the better SR series in my opinion. I have heard all in the range and this one strikes a good balance between the relative harshness perceived by many in the SR325 and what I felt the slightly more congested sound of the SR60. The SR60 comes with comfy pads and switching to bowls like the SR225 shows the SR60 to be more treble focused. The SR225 is a clean, and relatively smooth listen in comparison to the others in the series. There are options as far as pads go, but because it is one of the smoothest sounding headphones in this line up, the comfies are not quite as nice with them. There is too much reduction at the top end and the headphone becomes a little bit too muddy. Sennheiser 414 pads help, but just not as exciting a listen as the bowls. However, the bowls can be edgy to some, even on the SR225 and also uncomfortable to wear. If you stick with them for long enough, they do kind of 'bed in' and don't hurt quite as much. You can also bend the headband very easily so that they just rest on your ears rather than clamp. That fixes the comfort issues.
A very good headphone which can verge on edgy with poor quality sources. Try not to listen too loud, since this just accentuates its tendency to sound too toppy. Back off on the volume a little and it focuses better with a clarity that is stunning at this price.
on 6 February 2015
I always wanted a pair of Grados but had heard that they were the kind if product that you either love or hate. I found them uncomfortable and the sound was like fingernails on a blackboard. Horrible.
on 7 November 2012
After owning the grado sr60i for nearly 6 months, time for an upgrade..
First impressions are a more refined sound and much more comfortable than the flat earpads of the sr 60i.
The amazing grado sound is all there, but the frequency response is very bright , perfect for rock, metal and various other bass light music, but to be honest playing any electronica was hard work, some cd albums were like listening to screeching nails on a blackboard effect ,
To be truthfull I should have given them more burn in time, I'm sure they would have mellowed a bit...
Unfortunately returned, but kind of regret it as the sound was challenging and you could really turn the volume up as the bass could never distort as it was rolled off
on 12 January 2016
This is my first set of high end headphones, ive had a few sets of sub £50 cans which I always thought were good but listening to these grados has given me a whole new perspective of music.
I've heard people say that they heard things that they never have before its true!
on 24 November 2014
On my second pair, but only after I'd tried a pair of the 325i which I didn't like. Not overly bassed (yet plenty enough, and punchy), which unlike the 325's allows the midrange to breathe properly, the snare has attack and the whole thing has spaciousness. Also tried the AKG Q701's which had great reviews but which sounded antiseptic.These little grados are lovely, lovely, dynamic headphones and definitely a sweet spot in the range, and at the present price (now the 'e' version is out) are an absolute steal.
Get them out of the box and you will think to yourself " is that it?" as the construction is a little, um, lightweight...still worth 5 stars though.
on 6 September 2013
I bought the HD 600s at the same time and I like them a lot , will probably try to listen to them with an aftermarket cable. But once I put these on , I felt I was centred in the music, the sound was warm and colourful. In fact all the things that I had heard before about them , listen you either love this Grado sound or you prefer something a little more clinical but possibly truer to the recording, I love it and I think that I have found my brand for life.
on 17 March 2011
I had the occasion of auditioning three upper mid-level/lower high-end headphones during these past weeks: the Audio Technica ATH M50s, the Grado Prestige SR 225, and the Ultrasone Pro 550S. This was quite an experience, and I'd like to share my findings, though without doing a side-by-side comparison of the three `phones for various reasons, first and foremost because their individual characteristics are too different for a rigid evaluation on statistical points. If you are curious about my impressions of the other two, please see my respective reviews. And if you really twist my arm, I'll say as much: the ATs and the Grados are the clear front-runners, perhaps nose-by-nose, with the Ultasones coming in as a distant third. I do all my testing with the great little Creek OBH-11 headphone amp, connected to either DVD or CD players with Monster cables. It seems an awesome task to add anything to the collected wisdom of dozens of intelligent reviewers assembled here, but I'll try, as my subjective impressions are neither a part of the Grado cult crowd not opposed to it. In fact, this is the first time I had the opportunity to test Grados. If the Audio Technicas came in unpretentious packaging, the Grados in Spartan austerity go one step further: a flimsy cardboard package is all you get, a fairly short cable plus an instruction sheet advising you not to break the `phones in with uninterrupted play. Although they sounded fairly good out of the box, I did break them in for ca. 72 hours before submitting them to my tests. They benefited greatly from the breaking in. I tested them with a variety of classical (orchestral and choral/vocal) music. I used the same test programs as I did for the other two `phones, I also used the test CD that comes with the Ultrasones (see there). The Grados are quite a revelation, even side-by-side with my Beyer DT 880, my Denon AH 5000 and the AT ATH M50S: they are wide open, airy, musical and light (there is a preference in them for the higher registers), but at the same time rock-solid in midrange, and mid-bass. Plenty of punch in the timpani, basses and lower brass. There is (yet) some really deep bass lacking: this may be due to the open-ear system, or it may improve with time. Transients are amazingly clear and there is no noticeable congestion. Orchestral and vocal sound stage feels perfectly natural. I sense that they might become more stable with time in the highest treble of vocals and instruments, where a bit of brittleness is yet present. They have lots of detail and let you focus easily on orchestral groups and individual voices. They are very comfortable to wear and already seem to be a part of my head. What more can I say? Should you get the ATs or the Grados? If you can, get them both: they are great partners and complement each other in a variety of programs.