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Symphones Magnum upgrade for Grado SR325 and Alessandro MS2 - Page 147

post #2191 of 2335

R&D takes some time, but at least one scenario seems to be right around the corner... Symphones Magnum325 - $595 same as PS-500. One can wonder if a Symphones Magnum1K would appear in the future, costing the same as GS-1000 ($995) but competing with PS-1000 ($1695).

 

Edit:  Order went through, so I'll join the exclusive Magnum club soon. Crazy.. when I joined this site all I wanted was a soundcard with swappable opamp and a HP for about $99.


Edited by Albedo - 6/6/12 at 8:01am

Gear mentioned in this thread:

post #2192 of 2335

PCF,

You seem to be the authority on all things Grado. I know you have Joseph Grado headphones (HPs), and have said they sound similar to the Magnums. Have you heard the PS500, is it that close to the Joseph Grados?

post #2193 of 2335

When I talked to Rhydon this monday he told me he had parts for 2 more Magnums.

 

I won't be buying them anymore, I changed my mind. I'm happy with my SR325i... and HP-1000 lol.

 

Pcf do amplifiers does "much more" good to the HP-1000 than the HPA-1 and -2? I'm wondering if it'd be worth it to upgrade.

 

I do notice a difference between amplified and "not-"amplified but if the diminishing returns curve is as steep as it is for headphones I'm a bit afraid to buy a 1-2k solid state amplifier and not notice the difference.

 

 

Scootsit, HP-1000 is totally different, because the driver has a different topology / geometry, so it's very hard to compare with Grados of today. Also, the enclosure of the drivers, the headphone body, has little to do with it.

 

 

RS-1 and HP1 driver comparison photos (Click to show)

 

20080413_3c6f835a3930db7220f2DNPcc5T12wcK.jpg

 

20080413_5c06b0011eb0499350bfuFOZbGtlrQiX2.jpg

 

20080413_4a11abbd35f67d89d195Rz1XnzEGmFu92.jpg

 

20080413_5ec5a50b5f5faa31da55L7ckOOuqn2pv-1.jpg

 

20080413_0ba6f6016152b3246d5dVWCnCMd09fJb.jpg

 

 

 

Magnums v4 in MartinCustomAudio full wood jacket (comfies), frequency response

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=220.0;attach=844;image (changstar)

 

RS1 (flat pads)

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=44.0;attach=208;image

 

SR60, SR325, RS1, PS500

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=393&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=293&graphID[]=3331 (www.headphone.com)

 

Those are all similar curves

 

 

Now is the HP-1000:

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=24.0;attach=22;image not so similar anymore ;)

 

The graphs tell us that the HP-1000 is the more neutral (closer to flat frequency response) one.

 

In my earpinion, the HP-1000 driver is a bit more detailed and resolving, a bit faster and airier, and it holds itself considerably better at higher volumes. John Grados have a bit less clarity and a bit more grain, in general (all models). But those are fairly small differences. I think John Grados have gotten a lot better with time, and my SR325i with tape is impressing me even after hours of HP-1000.

 

HP-1000 is generally considered ultra-ultra transparent, and I think that it's most "Wowing" aspect. The music is untainted by the headphone, no artifice what so ever. You can crank up the volume and find yourself thinking "wow, this feels realistic!", instead of "wow, this is a loud headphone!". And I find myself cranking volume up on my HP-1000 a lot more because of that, and I almost forget about the safety of my hearing when doing it.

post #2194 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by scootsit View Post

PCF,

You seem to be the authority on all things Grado. I know you have Joseph Grado headphones (HPs), and have said they sound similar to the Magnums. Have you heard the PS500, is it that close to the Joseph Grados?

 

There are many people who know more about these headphones than I do. I just collect them really.

One thing I would like to clarify-  I never said that the Magnum sounded similar to the Joseph Grado headphones. Maybe someone else did.

I also never heard the PS500. redface.gif

post #2195 of 2335

To me the Magnum is not a poor man's HP1000 and I am sure that is not Rhydon's intention. 

Do you know what Joe's headphones and Rhydon's headphones have in common? Anyone?

post #2196 of 2335

Sorry, I misunderstood a previous post.

If I'm not mistaken, the only thing in common is aluminum, right?

post #2197 of 2335


That is very cool stuff. I have never seen a headphone with a polarity switch. Cool stuff.

You mentioned that material has little to do with it, I am curious though. The RS1 and Magnum in wood have similar signatures, I wonder if you put one of those drivers in metal (either or both) how much it would change. The consistency there makes me wonder if some of it isn't the wood.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by devouringone3 View Post

When I talked to Rhydon this monday he told me he had parts for 2 more Magnums.

 

I won't be buying them anymore, I changed my mind. I'm happy with my SR325i... and HP-1000 lol.

 

Pcf do amplifiers does "much more" good to the HP-1000 than the HPA-1 and -2? I'm wondering if it'd be worth it to upgrade.

 

I do notice a difference between amplified and "not-"amplified but if the diminishing returns curve is as steep as it is for headphones I'm a bit afraid to buy a 1-2k solid state amplifier and not notice the difference.

 

 

Scootsit, HP-1000 is totally different, because the driver has a different topology / geometry, so it's very hard to compare with Grados of today. Also, the enclosure of the drivers, the headphone body, has little to do with it.

 

 

RS-1 and HP1 driver comparison photos (Click to show)

 

20080413_3c6f835a3930db7220f2DNPcc5T12wcK.jpg

 

20080413_5c06b0011eb0499350bfuFOZbGtlrQiX2.jpg

 

20080413_4a11abbd35f67d89d195Rz1XnzEGmFu92.jpg

 

20080413_5ec5a50b5f5faa31da55L7ckOOuqn2pv-1.jpg

 

20080413_0ba6f6016152b3246d5dVWCnCMd09fJb.jpg

 

 

 

Magnums v4 in MartinCustomAudio full wood jacket (comfies), frequency response

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=220.0;attach=844;image (changstar)

 

RS1 (flat pads)

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=44.0;attach=208;image

 

SR60, SR325, RS1, PS500

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=393&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=293&graphID[]=3331 (www.headphone.com)

 

Those are all similar curves

 

 

Now is the HP-1000:

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=24.0;attach=22;image not so similar anymore ;)

 

The graphs tell us that the HP-1000 is the more neutral (closer to flat frequency response) one.

 

In my earpinion, the HP-1000 driver is a bit more detailed and resolving, a bit faster and airier, and it holds itself considerably better at higher volumes. John Grados have a bit less clarity and a bit more grain, in general (all models). But those are fairly small differences. I think John Grados have gotten a lot better with time, and my SR325i with tape is impressing me even after hours of HP-1000.

 

HP-1000 is generally considered ultra-ultra transparent, and I think that it's most "Wowing" aspect. The music is untainted by the headphone, no artifice what so ever. You can crank up the volume and find yourself thinking "wow, this feels realistic!", instead of "wow, this is a loud headphone!". And I find myself cranking volume up on my HP-1000 a lot more because of that, and I almost forget about the safety of my hearing when doing it.

post #2198 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by scootsit View Post

Sorry, I misunderstood a previous post.

If I'm not mistaken, the only thing in common is aluminum, right?

 

Every single pair of HP1000 was finished and tested by Joe Grado. Just like if you send your SR325 to Rhydon for an upgrade, you know he is the one who is doing it. That is what their headphones have in common- hand finished by the makers. Can't say that about John's phones.

Of course this is probably not the ideal way to run a business. Especially in Joe's case. He wouldn't tell a soul about how things were done and he invented many things (including Ping putter; Stereo moving coil phono cartridge etc...). Nothing was documented. When he goes everything goes with him. No one knows how his microphones are made (and he has made a few). I have no doubt that all Joe's creations will increase in value big time when he leaves us.


Edited by pcf - 6/6/12 at 4:50pm
post #2199 of 2335
Quote:

 

 

Pcf do amplifiers does "much more" good to the HP-1000 than the HPA-1 and -2? I'm wondering if it'd be worth it to upgrade.

 

 

Not sure about your question- can you clarify?

post #2200 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcf View Post

Not sure about your question- can you clarify?

 

Sure. Basically, I'm listening to my HP-1000 with the HPA amplifier all the time, and I am wondering how much better can this headphone becomes when using a more recent, better and more powerful headphone amplifier. Have you compared the Grado HPA against bigger solid state amplifiers like the popular models often spoken about on Head-Fi? Very little has been said about the HPA-1-2 on Head-Fi.

 

And I'm not so concerned about synergy nor I'm looking for "the best amp" for one headphone in particular, but I'm very curious to know if the HP-1000 benefits a lot from amplification. I'm wondering how close to HP-1000's maximum potential I am, with a HPA-1, and how much better would a beefier, costlier solid state amplifier would make it.


Edited by devouringone3 - 6/6/12 at 4:29pm
post #2201 of 2335

Is the HPA similar to the current Grado amp?

 

I had a Cmoy that used the same chip as the RA-1, I switched to a Millet, and the difference was pretty substantial. There are a lot of amps between the RA-1 and the $1k threshold.


Edited by scootsit - 6/6/12 at 4:54pm
post #2202 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcf View Post

 

Every single pair of HP1000 was finished and tested by Joe Grado. Just like if you send your SR325 to Rhydon for an upgrade, you know he is the one who is doing it. That is what their headphones have in common- hand finished by the makers. Can't say that about John's phones.

Of course this is probably not the ideal way to run a business. Especially in Joe's case. He wouldn't tell a soul about how things were done and he invented many things (including Pink's putter; Stereo moving coil phono cartridge etc...). Nothing was documented. When he goes everything goes with him. No one knows how his microphones are made (and he has made a few). I have no doubt that all Joe's creations will increase in value big time when he leaves us.


I find it interesting that Grado invented the moving coil cartridge and all Grado cartridges are now moving magnet or moving iron (as far as I know). Also, what is a Pink Putter?

post #2203 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by scootsit View Post


I find it interesting that Grado invented the moving coil cartridge and all Grado cartridges are now moving magnet or moving iron (as far as I know). Also, what is a Pink Putter?

Sorry, I meant Ping. redface.gif

post #2204 of 2335

What's a ping putter?

post #2205 of 2335
Quote:
Originally Posted by scootsit View Post

That is very cool stuff. I have never seen a headphone with a polarity switch. Cool stuff.

You mentioned that material has little to do with it, I am curious though. The RS1 and Magnum in wood have similar signatures, I wonder if you put one of those drivers in metal (either or both) how much it would change. The consistency there makes me wonder if some of it isn't the wood.

 
It's true that this is a wooden jacket Magnum, and the RS1 is also wood, but I don't believe that, metal or wood, would change the sound signature itself. Those materials will add certain attributes to the sound, a new vibe on their own, but not alter the sound signature of a driver. They have results akin to when you tune a T50RP mod. Balance of a driver will also remain roughly the same, if all you do is change the material. This is more true for open headphones at least.
 
Metal >> Plastic though... I have a SR100 (ABS plastic), a SR325 (ABS plastic metal hybrid), and a HP2 (full metal), all with the HP-1000 drivers in them, and the difference is very real, SR100 < SR325 < HP2. It's hard to describe but metal, or aluminum alloy in this case, is harder, less resonant, and gives better output, somehow. The driver will sound louder and seems more detailed to me (because less "low-level" energy is lost, I imagine. Sorry if I'm not precise at all, lol).
 
The consistency in the graphs I've posted are not due to the wood, far from it ;). They are due to the Grado driver,s which all have the same morphology (but sometimes with a reflex dot on the back of the magnet plate), but only a different grade and a different fine-tuning/doping. I shown you the www.headphone.com graph, SR60 vs SR325 vs RS1 vs PS500 to show you how similar they were together.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by devouringone3 View Post

SR60, SR325, RS1, PS500

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=393&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=293&graphID[]=3331 (www.headphone.com)

 

Those are all similar curves

 
But definitely the PS500 is the first ambassador of Grado's new sound... less shrill highs and darker, and it's popular because of that. The frequency response curve has been skewed by 5-10 degrees anti-clockwise, but the arrangement of the peaks and their relative height is still very much the same. I think that the PS500 is like this because of a new driver formula, and not so much the enclosure... but I could be wrong. Also I don't understand what makes the GS1000i and PS-1000 big mushroom cups sounding so different than the medium turbines.
 
 
Btw, Rhythmdevils is one to think the HP-1000 is better than the Magnum: http://www.head-fi.org/t/596028/joe-grado-hp1000-modifications/30#post_8214831

Edited by devouringone3 - 6/6/12 at 5:13pm
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