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Grado tweak...make your 325 sound like an RS-1

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I was cleaning up the basement and rearranging my gear when I noticed a small shammy cloth for cleaning CD's. The material was soft and absorbant and my thoughts turned to the use of this as damping material for headphones.

I opened up my SR325 and cut some strips of the shammy the same width and circumference as the inside of the driver housing and aluminum air chamber housing. I put a thin layer of contact cement along the insides then lay the strips along the insides of each, making sure the cloth adhered to all surfaces.

I put the SR325 back together and did some listening. Bass was fuller and seemed to go a bit deeper. Upper midrange was smooth like truffles, treble was a bit warmer but there was more inner detail and clarity. Vocals were super real. The sound was similar to what I heard from the RS-1.

I assume the material was damping resonances and outbound sound in the rear chambers.
post #2 of 17

Can you post some pics?
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Wish I could, but I don't have a digital camera. I'm still living in the dark ages.
post #4 of 17
Hmm... what are the odds of this mod working on my 125's, and making them sound better yet? - is it an aluminium thing do you think Beagle?
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Duncan: I have tried something similar with my SR225 a few years ago. I thought I heard a difference but very minor. I believe with the larger air chamber of the 325, more residue sound is being absorbed, meaning less interference with what goes to your ears. I fugure that with the material covering the walls, it makes the sonic print more akin to the mahogany of the RS-1. Just a hunch though.
post #6 of 17
Can you give a description of how to open up your
325's? Sounds like an awesome idea!
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Using a hair dryer, heat the sides of the aluminum housing for several minutes to let the aluminum get hot and allow the glue to soften. You they grip the black plastic driver housing in one hand and the aluminum chamber in the other and pull apart. It may take a few attempts. Don't point the hair dryer at the driver or into the back screen area. Heating the sides will eventually get the aluminum hot.
post #8 of 17

job done!

I just did a couple of things I wanted to try
but never had the courage. I opened up my 325's
and removed the button for "improved airflow" and
I dampened the inside of the chamber.

I used the method above to get the headphones
apart. All I read was shammy and I ended up
using strips cut from a fake car shammy It
will probably work about the same.

During my check to see if I broke anything, the
bass seems improved. I'm going to let them dry
fully and then do some more listening. Whew am
I glad I didn't destroy them!

Thanks for the idea Beagle.
post #9 of 17
This mod is perfect! This takes the bite out
of the treble and improves the bass. These cans
are *perfect* now!
post #10 of 17
We have gotta put this mod in that grado project thingy on headwize...
post #11 of 17
You guys are truely nuts. Lol.
post #12 of 17
You guys are truely nuts. Lol.
post #13 of 17
I always suspected that the plastic could not be doing the sound much good, which is why it makes perfect sense that the wood built RS-1 and 2 sound the way they do...after I get my 225's back from Grado (they shipped with the plastic grills, I'm going to get them to replace them) I'll try that mod. Thanks!

post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
Whew am glad I didn't destroy them!
Not like me. I just destroyed my SR325 by going one tweak too many. I tried my old HD600 cord on my SR325, liked it, then didn't like it (after extended listening, the sound was thin and grainy), so I put the old one back on. While performing the operation, the board on the back of one of the drivers peeled off and the driver is ruined.

That horrid, helpless, sickening feeling, realizing your provider of wonderful sound and music is DESTROYED, GONE, NO MORE!Fortunately, I still had my other matched 225 driver and substituted that one. But still...

It appears you can only solder the board so many times before the glue dries up and it comes off.

NOW....I suppose I should order a new SR325 but I am wondering if I should contact John Grado and ask for one with some shammy lining the insides, so I won't be tempted to open (sh'yeah, like I won't anyway?!?!).

Why do I keep opening and tweaking? Each time I get a new Grado I swear to myself that I will NOT open it and futz around but after the phone is no longer "new", inevitably temptation gets the better of me and this is the result. And then I have to save like hell to buy new ones. I have ruined at least 20 pairs of Grados over the last 8 years. Why? Why can I not just accept things as they are?

Perhaps maybe someone here should volunteer to be Head-Fi psychiatrist, to examine why we do these things and provide some assistance, advice and, most of all, deterrence.

For those who did do the tweak, please post an update after a week or two, indicating whether or not you still like the sound the tweak provides.
post #15 of 17
Don't get discourgaed Beagle. I bet Edison destroyed all sorts of headphones before he invented the light bulb.

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