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HD650 vs Grado 225 - Page 2

post #16 of 34
I think that using the right amp with the HD650 can give at a really nice BOOST and make it sound great !!
post #17 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by iainw View Post
I have sourced the HD650s for as little as £215 which I make to be $318 - and the UK is supposed to be, nay is, more expensive generally. The Grados, on the other hand come out at £179 (roughly $265).
don't worry about the price too much, yes it is way more expensive than in the US. sometimes you can find a webshop that ships from US to UK/Europe but otherwise: even at these high prices they are still worth it IMO. I paid as much for a SR125 here as it cost me to ship in a SR325i later, and I was very happy with it.
See if you can find a store that sells these and take a listen, there should be many in the UK, and the UK is not that big.
post #18 of 34
I'm using a Meier Cantate and it has a really good sinergy with my HD650s, I just want to get a new cable to "open" the sound a bit, giving it a little more detail yet being warm and smooth as it is. Not sure which cable though.

Bought the Cantate for $470 shipping included, so it's not that expensive considering the juice it has to drive this pair of headphones.
post #19 of 34
Thread Starter 
How do you think the Meier Catate (2 - different housing thats all) would do with the Grados? Would they be too bright?

I have found some RS-1s selling for $580 (£400) with a case, maple stand, new flats and new blows. Given that this is the UK, is this any good?

Should I just save my money and go for the sr225s if I have never had Grados before? Don't want to go too cheap (sr80s) as if I like them I would want to go straight out and buy the more expensive ones. Have tried the SR60s and liked those. Are they representative?

Any DAC/amps that anyone would recommend for both grados and the HD650s or do they require quite different animals?
post #20 of 34
Meier amps are usually warm-sounding. I'm using the HA-1, MK.II with the SR-80 and they seem to match very well.

If you liked the SR-60, then it's almost guaranteed that you'll like the SR-225 just as much or more.
post #21 of 34
An update for those who care: I changed the output tubes on my Little Dot MK III to some better Russian tubes, and with 30 hours or so of break-in the Sennheiser HD650s have "lightened up" quite a bit. They still lack the sparkle of the Grados, but they are becoming a lot more pleasant to listen to. Given the primary reason for this thread, I'd still stand by my recommendation of Grado over Sennheiser.
post #22 of 34
I have both now (and LD MK III) and I can say this: (oh and my HD650s have only around 10 hours on them)

SR225s with White Stripes = awesome, like as if you are standing in front of the live guitar amp stack. I think I can tell the make and model of guitar amplifier that Mr. White is using, with the Grados.

HD650s with White Stripes = easier to listen to but doesn't sound real, much more polite of a presentation.

SR225s with Keith Jarrett = good, but something lacking

HD650s with Keith Jarrett = amazing, like being at the live concert, but much more easy to listen to. Presentation is just more full and round and I can easily pick out the positions of the instruments.

SR225s with Mozart's piano concerto 21 - good but not great, some depth missing

HD650s with Mozart's piano concerto 21 - awesome, full and rich and smooth...like silk.

So, I'm afraid the old cliche seems to hold true. Grado's are awesome for rock, if you want to feel like you're in the garage or standing on the stage with the White Stripes. Sennheiser - better and more polite with everything else - and also more comfortable.
post #23 of 34
Thread Starter 
Hypoicon, yes I am certainly interested in the difference your tubes make. Given what I have written below...

Karthur, thank you for your review. Although I like rock (e.g. white stripes etc.) I do spend more time listening to Jazz (love Keith Jarrett - as an aside I am seeing him V soon in London) and to Classical too. On the basis of this it would be better to go for the HD650s I suppose. Hypoicon, would you agree with this?

I see that there is a Earmax Pro for sale (UK only) on the forum (with uprated tubes). If I got this rather than my current amp (Yulong Dac/Amp) then would this change the situation any?

In the future I think I am going to have to purchase both but really want to know which to get first!

There is just something about the look of the Grados and they have a real 'pop' to them (not the genre but rather there upfront nature) that I find attractive.

I do however like the idea of something warmer and a little less analytical than my ATH W5000s - would others agree with this? From what is being said the HD650s seem to be be the headphones that would meet that particular bill.

Again, thanks for all your input!
post #24 of 34
Haven't read the whole thread but i will. Before prejudicing my answer with it i will say i own both and recabled both. The 225 is more alive but the 650s sound higher end an fuller to me. I have amps for both and sitting down at home always grab the 650s over the Grados. On the other hand with a short apuresound recable, the 225s are incredible as a portable is you want to hear what is happening around you. They are also much easier to power thus (if recabled short) give you a portable option that is wonderful. Both sound great, home use with an amp, the Senns win hands down.
PS find Senns more comfortable to.
post #25 of 34
Now after reading the whole thread i do have two more comments for those of you who have comfort and SQ problems with the Senns. First, recable-the stock cables really prohibit the sound in my opinion. Recabling them opens them up quite a bit. I have put the stock back once or twice and i cannot believe they sell them with these.
Second, for comfort i read originally when i got mine a couple of years ago to slightly, carefully bend the medal out just above the ear cups. That takes away the clamping. I was amazed at how much more comfortable they were after doing this. They are my most comfortable headphones(see sig).
There is a pair of rs-1s that just came up for sale here used and if you go for Grado i would jump on those, if i wasn't waiting for a tube amp (Zana Deux) right now for the Senns i would. As they say, the better the amp the better the Senns perform.
post #26 of 34
IMHO after reading this thread - you'd be best off with BOTH the Grado SR 225's AND the Sennheiser HD 650's. Both have their own unique sound signature and both would nicely compliment a range of music styles and environments - grab 'em both!
post #27 of 34
The "grab them both" comment is pretty much true. After several days of listening to the HD650s, I'm starting to like them a lot more. I still think that they don't do well with the tube amp I'm using (Little Dot MKIII) as they should, but they are certainly "warm"-- just too warm for most classical or jazz in my opinion. They sound dead on most of the jazz I've listened to (Brubeck, Wes Montgomery, Al Di Meola). I don't agree that they are the best choice for jazz or classical unless your taste runs to the bland and comatose. They do tend to tame a lot of the hotter rock recordings I've fed through them though, so in that regard they are quite useful-- particularly with noisy live recordings.

Space and definition, on my set up, are just better all the way around on the Grados. There is more dynamic contrast, and the music just sounds more alive. I think this is obviously a taste issue, and I suspect that my opinion is anomalous. The Sennheisers did sound totally dead at first, but now they just sound "relaxed." Often, relaxed is good. But I am far more "involved" with complex music when I listen to the Grados.
post #28 of 34
Thread Starter 
How hatful of you both (lol). I new it would come to this!

From all of your helpful comments it seems that both would be rather a large departure from what I already had and that both have real qualities to gain.

I note that no one else has suggested any other cans to purchase - yes I know the thread asks for a straight comparison and I thank you for staying on point but from other threads I am even a little surprised that my situation has not been made more complicated. Can I take from this that I have picked two good diverse cans to add to my collection (not self congratulatory an actual question)
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by hypoicon View Post
The "grab them both" comment is pretty much true. After several days of listening to the HD650s, I'm starting to like them a lot more. I still think that they don't do well with the tube amp I'm using (Little Dot MKIII) as they should, but they are certainly "warm"-- just too warm for most classical or jazz in my opinion. They sound dead on most of the jazz I've listened to (Brubeck, Wes Montgomery, Al Di Meola). I don't agreed that they are the best choice for jazz or classical unless your taste runs to the bland and comatose. They do tend to tame a lot of the hotter rock recordings I've fed through them though, so in that regard they are quite useful-- particularly with noisy live recordings.

Space and definition, on my set up, are just better all the way around on the Grados. There is more dynamic contrast, and the music just sounds more alive. I think this is obviously a taste issue, and I suspect that my opinion is anomalous. The Sennheisers did sound totally dead at first, but now they just sound "relaxed." Often, relaxed is good. But I am far more "involved" with complex music when I listen to the Grados.
I think how warm the HD650s depends on what tubes you are using and what your source is. I prefer the warm sound anyway so I've taken steps to make it warm. Certain Jazz should be smooth and warm...but if you like messed-up experimental jazz fusion then go for the Grados. Classical should be silky-smooth and warm imo ....but that is just my taste. With the Moon HDAM on my soundcard, going into the LD MK III with Mullard EF92s, Osram E92s or Mazda E92s, the HD650 is perfectly tuned to my tastes. The SR225 is too in-your-face, and obviously that is great for certain kinds of music (like White Stripes and messed-up experimental jazz fusion!!)
post #30 of 34
I'd go with the 650s if you can't have both. If you want something inbetween, a lot of people are having good experiences with the new Denons.
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