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grado sound quality inquiry...

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

125i vs 325i

 

i'm a/b-ing them and i'll be damned if i hear much of a difference [actually no difference at all] - the source varies but none are what you'd consider audiophile grade [ipad, samsung galaxy s II, pc audio out...]

 

my buddy who's ears are way more 'golden' than mine can't detect any changes either

 

he thinks the two cans are fundamentally the same [minus the leather and aluminum] - which is why they sound the same -

 

car analogy time - driving on the highway at 80mph - we have 2 cars, both mustangs - same tires engine tranny etc, but one has the leather package and a sunroof, the other has cloth seats and hand crank windows...

 

the ride is going to feel exactly the same at speed...

 

i think the cans are very similar but different where it counts - same car analogy, but in mine car A has all weather tires rated at 100mph and car B has sport tires that are good up to 250 - the only problem, the road [our sources] only allows a speed limit of about 80

 

so because the source/amp cannot resolve any better [?] both sets of cans are indistinguishable from one another

 

i know there are a ton of grado threads out there - all of them asking what the difference is throughout the range of the prestige series, but you'd think there would be a standing auditory difference between the 125i and 325i

 

or is the $150 difference in the leather headband and the atomic number 13 cups?

 

 

post #2 of 21

What kind of source audio are you listening to? FLAC, ALAC, 320kbps MP3, VBR, etc?

post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuNaTiiK View Post

What kind of source audio are you listening to? FLAC, ALAC, 320kbps MP3, VBR, etc?



some cd, some lossless [flac] - lots of vbr mp3, nothing lower than 192ish - the signature was consistent throughout, they sound the same - which is the puzzling part...

 

even a youtube vid, through 'different' cans, should sound different - it shouldn't sound like you are lifting one set of cans only to replace it with the exact same set...

post #4 of 21

I had the 125i once and was quite happy with them for a while. If you can´t hear any difference go for the cheap 125i. I have gone Sennheiser HD650, but don´t like them on my cheap FiiO E11, but HD650 sounds great on my 500 $ X-Can V8P and a good DAC. So the hole chain makes a big difference. What music do you listen to and in what quality ?. Do you use an Ipod or a more powerful headphone amp ?. Is any DAC involved or computer ?. All these things matter for the end result.     

post #5 of 21

Seems to be an issue at the source. Your headphones are bottle necked. Give them both a shot on a good amp and test again.

post #6 of 21
Thread Starter 

that's my next purcahse, i've got cans galore [pio monitor 10, grado 125i 325i, senn hd-555, etymotic hf5, fostex tr50p]

 

but unfortunately my source/dac/amp stable is pretty weak - nothing even to note - any suggestions!?

 

the hard part is what i listen to - almost everything, as i type this it's afterglow by jon gomm, in a few minutes it'll be limit to your love by james blake, then classic kansas city jazz, hip hop, prog rock, big band... etc...

 

i love vocals and horns and strings, but i can also get down on some 'first of the year' [that guy got what was coming to him dammit! :)]

post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by saujamhamm View Post

 

i know there are a ton of grado threads out there - all of them asking what the difference is throughout the range of the prestige series, but you'd think there would be a standing auditory difference between the 125i and 325i

 

 

 

 

There are not going to be gross differences between Grados.  I don't know the 125i but I do know the 325i and the PS500.  The differences are small and subtle.  Lower your expectations and listen more carefully, then, come back. If, after that, they still sound the same, go with the 125i, but, give the 325i a good chance.

 

post #8 of 21

I've a/b'd the 325i's against ms1's and sr125's and found a difference when playing 320kb/s files out of my galaxy s, but maybe thats just placebo effect (hopefully not). I got my 325i's for a rly good price and love the metal construction and the gold color, so it was a purchase worth makign anyways

post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bbophead View Post

There are not going to be gross differences between Grados.  I don't know the 125i but I do know the 325i and the PS500.  The differences are small and subtle.  Lower your expectations and listen more carefully, then, come back. If, after that, they still sound the same, go with the 125i, but, give the 325i a good chance.

 


well i already own the 325s - my buddy here at work has the 125s

 

so it's not really a question of keeping one over the other or which to buy / we were just wondering if there was supposed to be more difference than we were seeing [hearing?] - i can totally understand the concept of subtlety, but the price difference sure isn't reflective :)

 

... begs the question though... 60i to 225i - what difference are you really getting? 

 

 

 

post #10 of 21

At www.headphone.com one can build a composite frequency response for up to 4 different models. I made a graph for those 2 models, and they are very much alike, except for at 4,500 Hz...there the 325s are louder at that frequency....everywhere else there are pretty much the same, so one would expect them to sound the same, except in music that happen to have moments of 4,500 Hz.

post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by yd2zhang View Post

I've a/b'd the 325i's against ms1's and sr125's and found a difference when playing 320kb/s files out of my galaxy s, but maybe thats just placebo effect (hopefully not). I got my 325i's for a rly good price and love the metal construction and the gold color, so it was a purchase worth makign anyways



color me lucky - i was going for the 80i on ebay / the box said that and the seller thought that - when the cans arrived they were genuine grado 325i - had the packing slip from amazon in the box, they were purchased in feb. of 2011 for $295

 

beautiful condition too - not a mark on the Al, the cans were still bent inwards, cups are factory stiff and smell like nothing at all...  i got brand new 325i for less than $100

post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larryonfire View Post

I had the 125i once and was quite happy with them for a while. If you can´t hear any difference go for the cheap 125i. I have gone Sennheiser HD650, but don´t like them on my cheap FiiO E11, but HD650 sounds great on my 500 $ X-Can V8P and a good DAC. So the hole chain makes a big difference. What music do you listen to and in what quality ?. Do you use an Ipod or a more powerful headphone amp ?. Is any DAC involved or computer ?. All these things matter for the end result.     



From my experience Grados don't scale quite as well with amp and dac upgrades, and two seperate headphones will usually still have different sound signatures even without good sources. In the case of grado though...

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=2971

 

It's not a huge mystery why you're not hearing too big a difference.

post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Otakusound View Post



From my experience Grados don't scale quite as well with amp and dac upgrades, and two seperate headphones will usually still have different sound signatures even without good sources. In the case of grado though...

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=2971

 

It's not a huge mystery why you're not hearing too big a difference.


That is the exact same graph that I made reference to earlier in this thread....Thanks for posting the graph. You can see the higher peak at 4,500 hz for the 325s

 

post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 

so my mustang has leather seats :) glad to know...

post #15 of 21

According to the graph, there is a 5 dB difference at 4500 hz, which should be audible on just about any type of music.  Why it isn't, I have no idea. 

 

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