I have had loads of pairs of cans, the disparity in quality of pads is something that i find annoying.
Now i always try to get a feel of the pads before a purchase.
The best i have had were (ahem) Bose AE1 pads, they are soft beyond belief but unfortunately
Beats Studio pads are very nice as well, do 'style' headphone companies spend more on pad design?
The Denon D1100 have nice pads, comfy , well stiched but not quite soft enough.
HD598 velour pads are lovely as well, velour seems easier to do well imo, my AD700 were very comfy as well.
My experiance of Grado pads has been disappointing , cheap and scratchy.
I am looking at getting the Z1000 next , Sony have never impressed me with their pads though, are the Z1000 pads nice?