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Grado 325is and PS500

post #1 of 48
Thread Starter 

Disclaimer:  As you will read/see I'm not a "reviewer".  These are just my impressions from the past three days.  I hope you find them interesting.

 

I know peeps will want to know how the PS500 compares to the HF2, RS2, RS1, etc.  I don't know these models, never heard them.  I have some experience with the GS1000 but don't have them on hand to compare.  Let's do some pics first.

 

PS500 on the right, 325is has JMoney headband

 

The JMoney headband is on the 325is.

 

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So there you have the comparo pics.  I like the matt gray finish on the 500's but I like the silver on the 325is, too.  Not too nit-picky about those sorts of things.

 

When I first did some listening, I was underwhelmed by the PS500.  I fell into the trap of thinking about double the price of the 325is and expecting, foolishly, a night and day diff.  Nope, they're both Grados.  Oh, and BTW, they both come in the same high-end pizza box.biggrin.gif  I was disappointed initially.  I wanted that extra 300 bucks to whack me up side the head, instead, it gently massaged my brain/ear apparati for more of the subtler pleasures.  Oh, I ran them both out of the Ming Da (pictured) with a 15' Grado extender and a Grado Y adaptor so I could get a sense, pretty much instantly, of the diffs between the cans.  Why did I use the Ming Da instead of the Peachtree Nova below it, I don't rightly know.  Maybe I just like to gaze at the magic tuning eye rectum fire gizmo tube.  Is there a better reason? tongue.gif  Right off the bat, the 500's sound a little bit louder, which surprised me, an uneducated guess would be plus1-2db which kind of tends to make it sound better.  You know the drill in the hi-fi store (remember hi-fi stores?), the louder speaker almost always sounds better somehow.  BTW, the 325is have about 300 hours (a wild guess) on them and the 500's about 6, so hardly burned in but since there's been some interest in this can, I thought early impressions were better than none, doncha know.  The 500's sound warmer, there's a little more (I kept thinking all the time that "little" was a word that came to my mind frequently) low-mid bass but without the thump that the 325is can exhibit.  Mids were of a finer texture on the 500's, imagine rubbing your thumb and index finger together, that kind of fineness, and there seemed to be a bit more separation of instruments and I got a little(!) better sense of the hall on acoustic recordings.  Incidentally, I'm an acoustic/fusion jazz and classical incl opera snob.  I'd list the recordings but I think most head-fi readers don't listen to this stuff.  No biggie.  With the 500's that goldarned 2.5k peak that makes the 325is a little(!) harsh seems to be gone.  As you by now have guessed, the 500's are a keeper although I think 495 would be a little fairer that 595.  But, I paid, I got.  Thanks to Mark Lyon of Audio Systems in Austin for emailing me immediately that they had come in.  I drove up the next day (60 miles) and he advised me to go ahead and take them home on trial and get a good listen in the quiet of my stereo room.  (Yeah, I have a "stereo room", actually it's a stereo building, no, not two buildings, one building with stereo equipment in it, and no computer in there, just listened to red book ceedees, didn't even trot the vinyl out, yet.)  It was an excellent suggestion since a brick and mortar establishment can be a bit noisy, ehh?

 

Well, think I'm done.  Hope readers find this .... whatever ...... helpful, interesting, infuriating .....

 

Chow 

post #2 of 48

good review, not that many out yet of these.

 

good to know my sr325is don't fall too far behind. i know i heard the rs2 as well as the ps1k before and the rs2 wasn't much better than the  325. it was better, but perhaps not immediately noticeable

post #3 of 48
Thread Starter 

Thanks.  Again, it took me about 1-2 hours of back and forths before I started to "get" it.  A brief 15 to 30 minute comparison will probably not be convincing enough.  I think they're worth it but that's everyone's problem, isn't it?

post #4 of 48

I've got about 25 hours on my PS500s and compared to my recently purchased 225is which I love, they are definately a more dynamic pair of cans.

More Bass, Better balance throughout the audio spectrum and more spatial in overall sound.

Compared to my RS1s that I had a few years ago, they are more neutral and better balanced. I needed to put flats on my RS1s to tame the upper frequencies.

I have been tube rolling to find the sweet spot and they are very responsive to changes which is nice.

They also sound very good on the RPX-33.

They are however significantly heavier than the 225is.

I'm hoping after 200hrs they'll sound even sweeter.

post #5 of 48

Thanks!  I'm waiting for my pair of the PS500s and really appreciate you posting your impressions here.  The following is the only other comment/review I've seen on them:

post #6 of 48

nice work, GRADO is really bad, i mean there are 4 headphones RS1 RS2 MPRO PS500 around 500-700, is really hard for me to make a choice!!

 

post #7 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liang View Post

nice work, GRADO is really bad, i mean there are 4 headphones RS1 RS2 MPRO PS500 around 500-700, is really hard for me to make a choice!!

 


Of course, I hear you.  My dealer seems to think (based on no evidence I might add) that the RS2 and RS1 will go away.  We'll see.

 

Thanks for the compliment.

 

post #8 of 48

Thanks for the impression. They sound a lot like HF-2's from how you're describing them. I'm waiting for the PS750 with RS1 like cups. evil_smiley.gif

post #9 of 48
I need to stay far away from this thread, its making me consider adding a Grado back into my setup. I don't even have an amp for my Sones yet!
post #10 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SemiAudiophile View Post

Thanks for the impression. They sound a lot like HF-2's from how you're describing them. I'm waiting for the PS750 with RS1 like cups. evil_smiley.gif

Wait on, brother, wait on.  Meanwhile, I'm just enjoying the music.bigsmile_face.gif
 

 

post #11 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MohawkUS View Post

I need to stay far away from this thread, its making me consider adding a Grado back into my setup. I don't even have an amp for my Sones yet!

Forget the amp.  You know you want them.evil_smiley.gif
 

 

post #12 of 48

OP, thanks for the pics 

post #13 of 48

Thanks for the review!

 

The issue here is one of break-in.  I found my RS1i's took 250-300 hours to really break in. 

 

We should be cautious until folks here have had these cans a while longer.

post #14 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoTrack View Post

Thanks for the review!

 

The issue here is one of break-in.  I found my RS1i's took 250-300 hours to really break in. 

 

We should be cautious until folks here have had these cans a while longer.

I understand.  Coming up on 40 hours and sounding better and better.
 

 

post #15 of 48

Nice review bbophead.  Hopefully we can get some more comparisons with other Grados over time as well.  RS2i, HF2, and the MS2i.  The SR325is is the only Grado I've really disliked due to their brightness !!  smile_phones.gif

 

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