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Grado GR10: Blissful Harmonics (Final Review Added) - Page 4

post #46 of 95
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

To each his own but check the waterfall and impedance graphs.  There's a measurement section on that site with more info. Also, those are differenct tips. Here's the Ortofon with the same stock tip as the Grado.

01_FR_Ortofon_e-Q7_Silicon.png

 Similar, yes, as I'd expect from similar motors but not identical. Other than case volume which isn't that different, there is no tuning. Same tips, nozzle and filter and that difference in enclosure volume won't have that large an effect on impedance at 1khz. There's no additional parts involved. Generally that measurement doesn't vary from test to test as some other may. Even in those graphs, the ones you're using to show sameness, there's 4db more bass in the Grado. That would be impossible for the same driver in what is probably a slightly smaller encloser. Lets just say we'll agree to disagree.normal_smile%20.gif

Here's my take on the Grado/Ortofon MA thing. I am 99% certain the GR8 and EQ-7 share the same exact driver. Their frequency responses are almost identical and so are the impedance/electrical phase measurements (based on Sonove's graphs/Headroom). The GR8 looks exactly like the Yashima N20 which never reached mass production. I think Grado simply bought off Yashima's use of their designs, while Ortofon simply has the right to the driver. Compared to the GR8, the EQ7 seems more refined and controlled with an identical response, more finely tuned. After that first driver I think Yashima refined the same driver and used better material, guess technically not the same driver. Thus the GR10 gets introduced which I'm almost sure was all designed by Yashima sine it was the case before, whereas the EQ-5 is Ortofon's take. I'm not a fan of the GoldenEars graphs (though still interesting) as I don't know much of their methods but the Headroom graph comparing the GR8/GR10 is spot-on in how I hear the differences between the EQ5/EQ7. What I'm wondering is if there's going to be a difference like the GR8/EQ7 between the newer two. Haven't heard the Grados, but I have to give much more respect to Ortofon for personalizing their product. Grado seems to be simply making use of their brand-name, overpricing the product and claiming credits. I can see such approach since they have actually punished/critized reviewers for posting unbiased negative reviews of their products.
 

 

Originally Posted by Austin Morrow View Post

Yeah, I agree with almost everything you said there. I honestly do't care for graphs though, as it's about what YOU hear.

For personal benefits, what you hear is best. Graphs are great if used in relation to other products if you know what to look for and understand their nature/procedure. For personal decision making, I'll take a graph I understand  well over a user review as it's not glossed off by bias, placebo and related variables (which are always overlooked). Still, user reviews are great in understanding the whole holistic nature of the IEM outside of sound and certain variables that occur between users. I will take my personal listening over both though, obviously the same for everyone else. 

 

Nice completion by the way, surely looks like you're into it. I will also like to thank you for the appreciation on Joker's thread. 


Edited by Inks - 11/13/11 at 11:37pm
post #47 of 95

It's an interesting take but you're describing differences of similar drivers. Not the same exact driver. Almost Identical is not identical. There may be a reason Ortofons aren't sold in the US. Perhaps each company has distribution rights in their markets. Ortofon originally used the low impedance version of the N20 and Grado the high, One didn't come before the other and they are very different impedances. Gr8 is 3 times as high. Grado may have preferred to not have the extra brightness of the low impedance driver in the original N20s. Orofon may have thought the high impedance too laid back. These are flavor questions, not qualitative ones. How do you know Grado didn't get to Yashima first which forced Orto to another case or that Grado didn't even had a hand in it? One thing universally liked about the Grado is the fit. Maybe Orto just wanted a cooler looking case. Perhaps the high impedance driver was the first worked on as it's unique in it's efficiency. Perhaps not. It's all speculation either way so I don't worry about it and we've had a few posters that have owned both makes that don't think them the same. Are any >$200+ IEMs cost affective for most DAPs with 192br? Value is extremely personal as is perspective of relative difference with same.

 

 Everything I've seen indicates that the GR8 and E-Q7 are both N20 drivers of different impedance as listed on Yashima's site. I suspect the motors and materials are as same as they can be other than the number of windings in the armature and sonic differences come from impedance relative to damping factor and inductance.

 

The Eq-5 and Gr10 have more differences from the originals and each other. Gr10 and e-q5 came later but the Grado is definitely more linear, extended on top  or at least more linear on top that makes it sound more extended and has better micro detail/texture etc. The spectral graph of the e-q7 and GR10 are quite different in ways not explainable by application. Both Ortofon and Grado bought the rights (and drivers) from Yashima and are working with them independently. Similar, yes. Same, no and at these levels of refinement, it matters just like it does when you change materials or make a subtle motor change in a dynamic speaker. If someone told me they prefer an ortofon, I can't argue with that as it's preference but when posters here point to differences of B2 vs DBA, I don't understand the great desire of sameness in these BAs when Grado clearly states they are using different materials in construction from the N20s that were first used in the E-q7 and GR8. I think all 4 known MAs are different in some way and why they exist. I also think Ortofon and Grado have exclusive rights to their versions of same and are not sharing. Perhaps Grado did want a low impedance version and needed to change the driver for their use so as not to infringe, using the opportunity to tweak it for the better. Who knows the hows and whys but I really do think these are all unique in some way. Think about it. Why would Grado wait until now to use an existing available driver if they felt it better to begin with? There's just nothing practical about the same driver argument.


Edited by goodvibes - 11/14/11 at 5:42am
post #48 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

It's an interesting take but you're describing differences of similar drivers. Not the same exact driver. Almost Identical is not identical. There may be a reason Ortofons aren't sold in the US. Perhaps each company has distribution rights in their markets. Ortofon originally used the low impedance version of the N20 and Grado the high, One didn't come before the other and they are very different impedances. Gr8 is 3 times as high. Grado may have preferred to not have the extra brightness of the low impedance driver in the original N20s. Orofon may have thought the high impedance too laid back. These are flavor questions, not qualitative ones.

How do you know the N20 is brighter? The MAs actually get brighter as more impedance is added based on Sonove's test adding impedance to the EQ7. Perhaps we don't know enough to just relate differences to just impedance. I did overlook the fact that the N20 is a different impedance, still Ortofon had the upper hand in the first MA design with the EQ7 as it performs better. The distribution rights assumption may be right, but I'm glad there are international forwarders to avoid Grado's ridiculous pricing. 

 

 How do you know Grado didn't get to Yashima first which forced Orto to another case or that Grado didn't even had a hand in it? One thing universally liked about the Grado is the fit. Maybe Orto just wanted a cooler looking case. Perhaps the high impedance driver was the first worked on as it's unique in it's efficiency. Perhaps not. It's all speculation either way so I don't worry about it and we've had a few posters that have owned both makes that don't think them the same. Are any >$200+ IEMs cost affective for most DAPs with 192br? Value is extremely personal as is perspective of relative difference with same.

 

I think the casing is coincidentally more ergonomic because Grado just didn't put any effort into making it theirs unlike Ortofon. You could be right that Grado simply beat them to it though, but either way I think the Ortofon's casing is of more quality.  Ortofon's decision of a big housing wasn't the smartest though, but it is both better built and personalized than the Grado. Same driver doesn't equal identical frequency response, I think the same driver is used among the EQ-7 and GR8 but there are slight differences in how that driver is tuned (driver placement, cable, housing?, etc). Their frequency response, electrical impedance and phase is too similar imo. Price-critiquing is a hard thing to compromise on, but I smell a blatant lack of value in the Grados compared to say something like the PFE232 or FAD SS which are more unique products imo. 

 

 Everything I've seen indicates that the GR8 and E-Q7 are both N20 drivers of different impedance as listed on Yashima's site. I suspect the motors and materials are as same as they can be other than the number of windings in the armature and sonic differences come from impedance relative to damping factor and inductance.

 

I agree, but perhaps it's more than just a impedance difference, once again pointing to the Sonove tests. 

 

The Eq-5 and Gr10 have more differences from the originals and each other. Gr10 and e-q5 came later but the Grado is definitely more linear, extended on top  or at least more linear on top that makes it sound more extended and has better micro detail/texture etc. The spectral graph of the e-q7 and GR10 are quite different in ways not explainable by application. Both Ortofon and Grado bought the rights (and drivers) from Yashima and are working with them independently. Similar, yes. Same, no and at these levels of refinement, it matters just like it does when you change materials or make a subtle motor change in a dynamic speaker. If someone told me they prefer an ortofon, I can't argue with that as it's preference but when posters here point to differences of B2 vs DBA, I don't understand the great desire of sameness in these BAs when Grado clearly states they are using different materials in construction from the N20s that were first used in the E-q7 and GR8. I think all 4 known MAs are different in some way and why they exist. I also think Ortofon and Grado have exclusive rights to their versions of same and are not sharing. Perhaps Grado did want a low impedance version and needed to change the driver for their use so as not to infringe, using the opportunity to tweak it for the better. Who knows the hows and whys but I really do think these are all unique in some way. Think about it. Why would Grado wait until now to use an existing available driver if they felt it better to begin with? There's just nothing practical about the same driver argument.

 

FWIR they seem more similar than the EQ7 was to the GR8. Users like Rawrster and James find them almost identical and it's been the same for the most part FWIR so far. I suspect the differences will like in the lower treble/high treble, for better or worse will depend. It will be very tricky to compare them as well as placebo can become a factor. There may be some more interesting comparisons coming up from other users that you may find intriguing. 

 

I agree the EQ-7 and GR10 are different enough, really different in design, I also disagreed that the EQ-7's driver=GR10's as it was falsely rumored far back. I do think it's very similar, perhaps even fundamentally the same but of course one being a redesign that makes it quite different. I personally don't think Grado is being as practical as Ortofon in the whole MA thing. Speculation is fun, but we could both be very wrong. I am quite confident that EQ-7/GR8 use the N20 driver and EQ-5/GR10 use a new or N20 redesigned driver. 

 

 

 

 


Edited by Inks - 11/18/11 at 7:26pm
post #49 of 95
Thread Starter 

Just incase anyone is wondering, this is how I auditioned each IEM to try and a voice as much placebo as possible.

 

I sat in my room (there was absolutely no sound, no windows, nothing, everything was completely dead silent), I had the exact same tips on each earphone, and I plead them all accordingly out of the exact same device with the exact same songs and testing methods. For me, it's literally the best place possible. Yes, they are all very similar IEM's. But, there are extremely subtle differences (besides the treble on the GR10, which seems a lot more prominent to my ears) between each that I was able to detect over and over and over again each time. With all that being said, I couldn't distinguish each IEM literally at all if I was on the bus or some other fairly noise place.


Edited by Austin Morrow - 11/18/11 at 9:03pm
post #50 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Austin Morrow View Post

Just incase anyone is wondering, this is how I auditioned each IEM to try and a voice as much placebo as possible.

 

I sat in my room (there was absolutely no sound, no windows, nothing, everything was completely dead silent), I had the exact same tips on each earphone, and I plead them all accordingly out of the exact same device with the exact same songs and testing methods. For me, it's literally the best place possible. Yes, they are all very similar IEM's. But, there are extremely subtle differences (besides the treble on the GR10, which seems a lot more prominent to my ears) between each that I was able to detect over and over and over again each time. With all that being said, I couldn't distinguish each IEM literally at all if I was on the bus or some other fairly noise place.



A/Beeing is such an art. For me it almost can't be done while trying. If I listen, rather than A/B at a later day I may be able to distinguish more. It's like Wisdom, it only comes when it's ready

post #51 of 95



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

 

 

 

 


EVERY report on the Gr8 vs E-q7 has reported the GR8 more laid back and E-q7 brighter. They're of equal quality and on Yashima's web site as the original N20 drivers for all to see. Both were designed by Yashima and the GR8 was introduced in august of 09. That was actually before I heard any reference to the Ortofon. Ultimately which was first doesn't really matter as they were introduced too close to one another for either to have been borrowed from the other. There was no first or better other than misinformation and preference. The E-Q7 was also priced higher (still is) yet now the GR10 is attacked over price. Nothing over $200 or so is going to be a great value with how IEMs generally get used. After that it's up to an individual what's worth it or not. Like any, some will dislike them and others love them. C'est la vie.

 

Your interpretation of adding resistance to an e-q7 as being the same as playing a higher impedance GR8 is entirely wrong. Driving a higher impedance device gives a higher damping factor. Adding a resistor to a low impedance device does just the opposite as the IEM sees the resistor as part of the source impedance and the compromised bass response on those graphs clearly show it. Looks nothing like a GR8. Feel free to reference one of the other graphs you've supplied. Adding a resistor to a low impedance device is nothing like a high impedance version of the same device.

 

There is no difference in placement or filtering of any of these drivers. all the nozzles are identical. All have the same acoustically transparent filter for protection. Only the back cases and perhaps slight overall volume differs. At these wavelengths the case material really doesn't matter and any volume difference isn't enough to change bass response from looking at the graphs. All seem flat between 20hz and 100hz which is where it would show. The sonic differences aren't of the sort to be explained away by these differences. No one else uses the Grado case which is unique to them, is very form is function grado-ish and works great by every review so I don't understand your issue other than bias. Grado has a philosophy of don't fix what isn't broken. Whether they had a hand in the case or not, there was no good reason to change it or make it less comfy like the Orto. It's neither shared nor generic.

 

This review says they're different, others have now said they're not identical and I've heard a very clear difference with both on hand. If you haven't, why speculate? I think we hear things similarly. I bet you'd appreciate them with a listen. They're great with the Iphone 4s.


Edited by goodvibes - 11/19/11 at 10:07am
post #52 of 95

For those of you who've owned the GR10, how exactly do you take it out? The cord seems like a horrible idea obviously. But the body is a little slippery for removing... So it seems the best option is the strain relief but its kind of tilted at an odd angle. What do you do? Thanks!

post #53 of 95

I close my mouth, block my nose and blow as hard as I can until they pop out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

wink.gif

 

(Joking aside, I pull my earlobe and grab them carefully at the strain relief)

post #54 of 95

Quote:

Originally Posted by james444 View Post

I close my mouth, block my nose and blow as hard as I can until they pop out.

Michael_Scott_by_St0f.jpg

post #55 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by imackler View Post

For those of you who've owned the GR10, how exactly do you take it out? The cord seems like a horrible idea obviously. But the body is a little slippery for removing... So it seems the best option is the strain relief but its kind of tilted at an odd angle. What do you do? Thanks!



I do as James or just give a horizontal push to loosen them. I'm a stickler for the stock tips and they're qiute soft and easy to remove. The phone itself kinda locks against the tragus. The tips aren't that tight.

post #56 of 95
Originally Posted by goodvibes 


EVERY report on the Gr8 vs E-q7 has reported the GR8 more laid back and E-q7 brighter. They're of equal quality and on Yashima's web site as the original N20 drivers for all to see. Both were designed by Yashima and the GR8 was introduced in august of 09. That was actually before I heard any reference to the Ortofon. Ultimately which was first doesn't really matter as they were introduced too close to one another for either to have been borrowed from the other. There was no first or better other than misinformation and preference. The E-Q7 was also priced higher (still is) yet now the GR10 is attacked over price. Nothing over $200 or so is going to be a great value with how IEMs generally get used. After that it's up to an individual what's worth it or not. Like any, some will dislike them and others love them. C'est la vie.

 

Your interpretation of adding resistance to an e-q7 as being the same as playing a higher impedance GR8 is entirely wrong. Driving a higher impedance device gives a higher damping factor. Adding a resistor to a low impedance device does just the opposite as the IEM sees the resistor as part of the source impedance and the compromised bass response on those graphs clearly show it. Looks nothing like a GR8. Feel free to reference one of the other graphs you've supplied. Adding a resistor to a low impedance device is nothing like a high impedance version of the same device.

 

There is no difference in placement or filtering of any of these drivers. all the nozzles are identical. All have the same acoustically transparent filter for protection. Only the back cases and perhaps slight overall volume differs. At these wavelengths the case material really doesn't matter and any volume difference isn't enough to change bass response from looking at the graphs. All seem flat between 20hz and 100hz which is where it would show. The sonic differences aren't of the sort to be explained away by these differences. No one else uses the Grado case which is unique to them, is very form is function grado-ish and works great by every review so I don't understand your issue other than bias. Grado has a philosophy of don't fix what isn't broken. Whether they had a hand in the case or not, there was no good reason to change it or make it less comfy like the Orto. It's neither shared nor generic.

 

This review says they're different, others have now said they're not identical and I've heard a very clear difference with both on hand. If you haven't, why speculate? I think we hear things similarly. I bet you'd appreciate them with a listen. They're great with the Iphone 4s.

I don't think the EQ-7 is simply brighter, it seems more extended and linear (while sharing the same response) based on Sonove's graphs (see bottom). Components seems the same as mentioned, but it seems Ortofon did a better job at tuning the driver. The GR8 just didn't have the appeal of the EQ-7s whatsoever. EQ-7 was initially priced higher but it's pricing was actually flexible and it allowed many users to get them for a much lower price than retail. Agreed that value over 200$ is hard to measure but when a sound signature is close to a competitor it's harder to justify going for a marginally higher priced IEM and one becomes more critical. I would say this of the CK10 as compared to the B2/DBA02 if it weren't for it's much superior build quality. 

 

Thanks for the insight, I kind of suspected this but wanted to point that out regardless. I know all of the things mentioned are identical but leaving it to just an impedance difference seems oversimplified IMO. Even if it were true, it seems Ortofon did a better job nailing it with the EQ-7 over the GR8. I don't have a problem with the casing, it works but it's truly a Yashima case not a Grado one. Grado could've just been neglectful in designing their own rather than being clever, either way we both may be wrong as it's just speculation. 

 

I'm sure they're not identical, but are the differences really worthwhile? Not saying there aren't differences, they just seem too small to be worthwhile based on feedback from other users. Speculation is based on what I've read hear in regards to them, but I am going to get a chance to listen to them soon. I'll see how they turn out and I may be able to get these and the EQ-5s graphed by Tyll Hertsens to put the differences into perspective. 

 


Edited by Inks - 11/27/11 at 7:37pm
post #57 of 95

It's going to be an individual thing. I certainly hear more micro detail and texture from a GR10 vs e-q5 and love the fit but there doesn't seem to be any real concensus so I guess it's somewhat personal as always. Nothing is perfect and price/performance is always relative to like and need. I just think once you're looking at $300 IEMs, price isn't the concern it is in the under $200 ranges. I'd like to hear the Phonak 232. I almost popped for some JH5s which I also like a lot but I just didn't feel the need. Maybe a 10x3 at some point if I get enough of a bug. I agree that most preferred the E-q7 to the GR8 but it was also not universal with some liking the gr8 trade off of less extension for less lower highs.

 

The impedance difference on it's own could explain the response differences. Along with the higher impedance will also come more inductance from the additional windings and it's generally difficult to have things be absolutely identical with something like that. I think what's happened with the GR10 is that they've got the extension and low level res without the impression of a forward mid/low treble. How successful and cost effective is always up for debate.bigsmile_face.gif


Edited by goodvibes - 11/28/11 at 5:16am
post #58 of 95

Really enjoying the GR10. I was trying to find the post on the appreciation thread. How would you say that burn in affects the GR10? The treble is coming off a little hot to me...

post #59 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by imackler View Post

Really enjoying the GR10. I was trying to find the post on the appreciation thread. How would you say that burn in affects the GR10? The treble is coming off a little hot to me...


Yes, it does.  While I am not a firm believer in burn in, many (including me) seemed to find the treble to smooth out after 20-25 hours.

 

As a sidenote, to me the ultimate universal would be GR10 midrange and treble with TF10 bass and soundstage.  It would be epic!
 

 

post #60 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by imackler View Post

Really enjoying the GR10. I was trying to find the post on the appreciation thread. How would you say that burn in affects the GR10? The treble is coming off a little hot to me...


I'd rather put my chips on hybrids than burn-in...

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