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post #121 of 191

Grado cables are midrange-rich and the Black Dragon seems to be high-bass heavy with recessed treble. If you take a midrange-recessed silver cable, there will be deep U equalization perceived on the PS1000 IMHO. There are better options to make the PS1000 or the HD800 sound better than replacing the cable. My humble experience says that all those improvements reported here where due to aftermarket cables masking some imperfections of the signal chain.

 

If I had to try another cable for PS1000, I would look for pure copper because of overall slight midrange emphasis and treble roll off in such cables. Silver plated copper is IMHO the most transparent variant and pure silver is something that I would never use alone. You can mix silver and copper wires to build a decent cable but using silver only can result in some kind of tonal incompleteness. The bass will be hard but a bit rounded, the midrange rather dark and huge soundstage partly due to prominent trebles.


Edited by majkel - 7/14/12 at 6:50am
post #122 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

If a measurement includes a very small but known problem zone - like that HD800 dip at 11k because of the measurement head - you don’t need to throw out the entire measurement. You just got to make sure you can explain the reason for the one tiny anomaly.

 

@Gradofan2. Apple’s margins for their laptops and iMacs are high but I guarantee that the $1700 for the PS1000 has an even greater markup (and has much worse build quality and QC) than a $1700 Mac. I guess, in a larger sense, I find it a little interesting how we all pick and choose what types of items we are willing to pay high markups for.

They don't need to, they want to. It's a losing battle for any Grado fan to argue measurements with others because it simply doesn't work.

post #123 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

If a measurement includes a very small but known problem zone - like that HD800 dip at 11k because of the measurement head - you don’t need to throw out the entire measurement. You just got to make sure you can explain the reason for the one tiny anomaly.

 

@Gradofan2. Apple’s margins for their laptops and iMacs are high but I guarantee that the $1700 for the PS1000 has an even greater markup (and has much worse build quality and QC) than a $1700 Mac. I guess, in a larger sense, I find it a little interesting how we all pick and choose what types of items we are willing to pay high markups for.

 

Well... I agree... re: the MSRP of all Grado phones - just way, way overpriced - though, less so for the RS-1's and below.  The GS1000's and PS1000's are "ridiculously priced" and just aren't worth their MSRP - but then, I feel even more strongly about the ridiculous prices of the 007's / 009's, Fostex TH900's, HD800's, LCD3's, etc., etc....  The improvement in their sound over other lesser priced phones simply can not justify their MSRP's on any of these phones.  However, among all of these phones... about the only ones, which can reproduce the sound of "real, live music" are the Grados.  That is not the case with Apple products.  

 

And... "as far as measurements are concerned" - "forgidaboudit" - they bear absolutely no relationship to whether any phones produce the sound of "real, live music," or not - and are therefore, totally useless.

 

But... I never pay MSRP... and... bought all my phones at huge discounts from MSRP... and... at the prices I've paid... they are "huge bargains," which very easily justify their prices.  

 

As far as Apple products... it's very, very difficult to justify the price premiums of their PC's... unless... you have never used a PC before... and are a total "tech novice."  If one is the latter... then their price premium's are easily justified - because you can pick one up and use it effectively "right out of the box."  That's how I learned how to use a PC, initially - I bought a Mac, and "was up and running" in a few hours over a Christmas holiday.  I would never have been able to do that with a Windows based PC at the time.  I paid a HUGE price premium for the entire Mac set up... but... it was worth it.  As I became more competent in using PC's, I was able to make the transition to Windows based PC's, which are a "fraction of the price" and just as effective, though they do require a bit more technical expertise.  So... I no longer need the simplicity of Apple PC's... and can avoid the price premiums.  

 

While I consider the iPods / iPads also overpriced... they are so elegant and easy to use... I can almost justify their prices.  I suppose that will abate with the gradual evolution of Windows based touch pads.  But, right now the iPod / iPad is about "the only game in town."  


Edited by Gradofan2 - 7/14/12 at 6:18pm
post #124 of 191

I find that even though I’m technically competent with PC’s, I no longer want to devote any time or brain power to computer maintenance and so Apple machines win out. It was different when I was a teenager with a much more limited budget, of course. Plus, I just find the hardware and software better designed with more attention paid to small details so it’s worth whatever extra cost I need to pay. 

 

I can’t agree that only Grado PS1000 produce “real, live” music. Especially not better than the LCD3, 007 and HD800, all of which I have heard for extended periods of time in my home. they all sounded much better and more realistic to me compered to the PS1000.

 

The treble is too out of whack and the bass has that 100 Hz bump to make up for lack of sub bass. What they do is make things sound more energetic by colouring the sound. But, whatever, opinions....

post #125 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradofan2 View Post

 

Well... I agree... re: the MSRP of all Grado phones - just way, way overpriced - though, less so for the RS-1's and below.  The GS1000's and PS1000's are "ridiculously priced" and just aren't worth their MSRP - but then, I feel even more strongly about the ridiculous prices of the 007's / 009's, Fostex TH900's, HD800's, LCD3's, etc., etc....  The improvement in their sound over other lesser priced phones simply can not justify their MSRP's on any of these phones.  However, among all of these phones... about the only ones, which can reproduce the sound of "real, live music" are the Grados.  

i agree for the prices 

and i add one headphone for real live music: symphones magnum

post #126 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

They don't need to, they want to. It's a losing battle for any Grado fan to argue measurements with others because it simply doesn't work.

 

A woman doesn't need to be 36-24-36 for me to love her. My woman may be pear-shaped with ugly feet and I'd love her just as much or more than you do Ms Perfect.

post #127 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by Focker View Post

 

A woman doesn't need to be 36-24-36 for me to love her. My woman may be pear-shaped with ugly feet and I'd love her just as much or more than you do Ms Perfect.

 

The thing is that there’s a difference when people say that the PS1000 is engaging and lively and fun to listen to OR when they say it has extremely high fidelity or stays truer to the recording than other high end headphones.

 

We’ve had both types of sentiments come around in this thread. (in every PS1000 thread, really) the first is totally fine. the second statement is, well, false. Ears and measurements back that up.

post #128 of 191

My point was that measurements didn't show the other headphones were better, so we have received the response that the points where other headphones failed were due to measurement system, not headphones while when discussing the PS1000 escapes from accuracy then for sure it was the headphone's fault. Kind of funny, isn't it? We, Grado fans, stand all the time in the same place - ears tell what to think and what to choose. Maybe there is a kind of interaction between my head and the headphones making it better to take on the Grado rather than something else? Someone should measure it to confirm but I actually know what is good for me and share my thoughts. No need to measure for myself. Ears have higher priority in terms of choice.


Edited by majkel - 7/15/12 at 7:46am
post #129 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

 

The thing is that there’s a difference when people say that the PS1000 is engaging and lively and fun to listen to OR when they say it has extremely high fidelity or stays truer to the recording than other high end headphones.

 

We’ve had both types of sentiments come around in this thread. (in every PS1000 thread, really) the first is totally fine. the second statement is, well, false. Ears and measurements back that up.

 

I agree. Although if there weren't aspects of the Grado sound that I felt were more accurate (e.g. timbre) than other headphones, I seriously doubt I'd care for them. I've spent enough time around live music (i.e. un-amplified) to have a pretty good feel for what various instruments and vocals sound like, and the Grados excel in that area to my ears.  (I used to be engaged to a classically trained opera teacher/performer and I spent a LOT of time around them and the orchestra.) I would have no interest in headphones that completely misrepresented the music. I have no interest in debating measurements because it simply isn't important to me. All that matters is that when I listen to music, it's as enjoyable as possible. I think that's pretty much what Austin was getting at in his review, as he's not really debating the measurables. 

post #130 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by majkel View Post

 Someone should measure it to confirm but I actually know what is good for me and share my thoughts. No need to measure for myself. Ears have higher priority in terms of choice.

 

Right there with you. 

post #131 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

 

The thing is that there’s a difference when people say that the PS1000 is engaging and lively and fun to listen to OR when they say it has extremely high fidelity or stays truer to the recording than other high end headphones.

 

We’ve had both types of sentiments come around in this thread. (in every PS1000 thread, really) the first is totally fine. the second statement is, well, false. Ears and measurements back that up.

 

i'm not trying to defend the ps1000 but i really don't think that it's as clear cut as you believe. the science of measuring headphones is very much an evolving one, and the results do vary depending on who is taking the measurements. they should be regarded as indicative rather than absolute. we don't actually know which headphone reproduces recorded music most faithfully, and the measurements won't establish that for us. the standard by which headphones are measured for frequency response for example, is not an objective one as such. it has been arrived at through research and agreed upon, but it is not static and may be subject to further change over time. and let's not forget that headphones are more difficult to measure accurately than speakers.

 

the sr-009 and lcd-3 are two of the best measuring headphones currently on the market, but they don't sound the same or even alike. so which of them reproduces the recording most truly? and if we could ascertain beyond any doubt that say the sr-009 is the most accurate transducer of the two, what if you actually prefer the sound of the lcd-3? should you choose the headphone that you know reproduces the recording more faithfully, even when it makes some of your favorite recorded music sound less engaging due to its highly resolving nature? or do you choose the one that doesn't come as close in terms of accuracy, but is more forgiving and makes listening to your recorded music collection a more enjoyable experience? i find this dichotomy between measurements and listening rather pointless. measurements have a place in the assessment of headphones but personally speaking, i listen to headphones, not measurements.  smile.gif    


Edited by shimmer n roar - 7/15/12 at 11:00am
post #132 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by shimmer n roar View Post

 

i'm not trying to defend the ps1000 but i really don't think that it's as clear cut as you believe. the science of measuring headphones is very much an evolving one and the results do vary depending on who is taking the measurements. they should be regarded as indicative rather than absolute. we don't actually know which headphone reproduces recorded music most faithfully and the measurements won't establish that for us. the standard by which headphones are measured for frequency response is not an objective one as such. it has been arrived at through research and agreed upon, but it is not static and may be subject to change over time. and let's not forget that headphones are more difficult to measure accurately than speakers.

 

the sr-009 and lcd-3 are two of the best measuring headphones currently on the market but they don't sound the same. so which of them reproduces the recording most truly? and if we could ascertain beyond any doubt that say the sr-009 is the most accurate transducer of the two, what if you actually prefer the sound of the lcd-3? should you choose the headphone that you know reproduces the recording more faithfully even when it makes some of your favourite recorded music sound less engaging due to its highly resolving, unforgiving nature or do you choose the one that doesn't come quite as close in terms of accuracy, but makes listening to your recorded music collection a more enjoyable experience? smile.gif    

They are voiced differently (mainly in the upper mids / treble regions) but share similar traits (clean decay, low noise floor, low THD, little to no ringing, almost square 30 / 300 Hz square waves, no sharp razor treble peaks anywhere, almost perfectly flat FR from mid mids down to 10 Hz). The argument is that as long as a headphone has good measurements, it doesn't matter how it is voiced, it will be accurate, just with a signature of its own.

 

As for "if A doesn't sound like B, how can you say both are accurate?", an analogy would be "if standing in the front row of a concert doesn't sound like standing 10 metres back, which one is more accurate?", another would be "if my ear pinna is shaped and positioned differently from yours, and so intrinsically I perceive sound differently from you, which pair of ears perceive sound the most accurately?" In all these cases the as fundamentally the sound is accurate, voicing aka differences in the upper mids / treble are just that and shouldn't be factored in.


Edited by jerg - 7/15/12 at 9:11am
post #133 of 191

sorry guys but i was in the process of editing my post while you were responding to it. redface.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

They are voiced differently (mainly in the upper mids / treble regions) but share similar traits (clean decay, low noise floor, low THD, little to no ringing, almost square 30 / 300 Hz square waves, no sharp razor treble peaks anywhere, almost perfectly flat FR from mid mids down to 10 Hz). The argument is that as long as a headphone has good measurements, it doesn't matter how it is voiced, it will be accurate, just with a signature of its own.

 

As for "if A doesn't sound like B, how can you say both are accurate?", an analogy would be "if standing in the front row of a concert doesn't sound like standing 10 metres back, which one is more accurate?", another would be "if my ear pinna is shaped and positioned differently from yours, and so intrinsically I perceive sound differently from you, which pair of ears perceive sound the most accurately?" In all these cases the as fundamentally the sound is accurate, voicing aka differences in the upper mids / treble are just that and shouldn't be factored in.

 

yes, but are the headphone measurements as accurate, repeatable and universal as they could be? the fact remains that there are variations in headphone measurements that can be attributed to whoever is taking them, whether they be headphone manufacturers or headphone measuring enthusiasts. and this doesn't begin to account for other variables such as variations in production units.

 

i don't think that your analogy holds because it's relative. the question remains that if we have two headphones that measure the same or very close to the same but sound distinctly different, then how do we determine which one is true to the recording?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

 

I agree, when it comes to small differences in measurement, then the charts can't really convey the subtle nuances of how a headphone will sound. However, when we see a chart from a D2000 and see the enormous bass hump or a chart from the PS1000  and see the enormous treble hump, then we get a better idea as to their character. 

 

I can’t look at charts and figure out how soundstage and note decay will sound. Or how accurate imaging will be. So I agree with you about the LCD3 and the 009 (which I have not heard - but I heard the 007) being hard to distinguish via charts.

 

But I can get a general idea of the sonic character of the headphone. So when I listen to the PS1000 and then see the treble peak FR, I’m able to go “yeah, that makes sense”. And let’s not forget that the initial LCD3 issues that had veiled mids did show up as subtle variations in the FR charts and it did help pinpoint their issues. the new ones (like mine) have an even greater extension in the midrange energy before shelving down the treble. People who have heard both have commented on this change in sound and the charts do back this up. And this was a subtle, but visible, difference in measurement.

 

As for the difference between faithful reproduction vs enjoyable experience, that’s going to be a different answer for everyone. I have my Magnums for the “lively, enjoyable, front row” experience. I know they have peaks and valleys in their FR. but I also know, from listening and from charts, that they are better behaved and less harsh than their official Grado counterparts and so I prefer to keep these instead of an RS1 or PS500. I can’t see myself ever being without them.

 

Funnily enough, most of my music that is poorly recorded or of lower quality has problems in one specific area - the treble. those songs tend to sound a bit shrill. so pairing them with a headphone like the PS1000 that emphasizes that area makes them sound even worse. Turns out the LCD3, with the slightly shelved treble does a better job of helping me enjoy the music of troublesome recording even while it’s reproducing it more faithfully than the PS1000.

 

As for good recordings, I prefer the LCD3 too. But in this case, the PS1000s FR isn’t really hurting the songs a great deal, imo. it’s just giving them the flavour that some people may enjoy more. (including myself for a few songs. it wasn’t a cut and dry decision for me to sell the PS1000 and keep the LCD3. I had to listen to quite a few songs to understand how the PS1000 treble would affect my collection)

 

measurements should be regarded as indicative and they have a place in the assessment of headphones as i've said. my point is that measurements are predicated on a construct, a standard that has changed and may change again. they should not be regarded as permanent or absolute. and they should definitely not be regarded as the final arbiter for a headphone's fidelity to the recording. we make that subjective judgement based on what our ears tell us regardless of what the measurements show. if the measurements depict the sr009 as the most accurate transducer but upon hearing it we notice that there is something intangible about its presentation that makes the recording sound less than real to us, lacking or even bothersome, then our perception has overidden those measurements rendering them irrelevant. when you say that ears and measurements support that the ps1000 is not high fidelity or true to the recording, you are really just asserting your opinion as fact. the discussion of audio always comes down to a matter of opinion, even in the sound science forums. now i've embroiled myself in a futile discussion that i really don't want to have, so i'll leave it at that. happy listening! smile.gif

post #134 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by shimmer n roar View Post

 

i'm not trying to defend the ps1000 but i really don't think that it's as clear cut as you believe. the science of measuring headphones is very much an evolving one, and the results do vary depending on who is taking the measurements. they should be regarded as indicative rather than absolute. we don't actually know which headphone reproduces recorded music most faithfully, and the measurements won't establish that for us. the standard by which headphones are measured for frequency response for example, is not an objective one as such. it has been arrived at through research and agreed upon, but it is not static and may be subject to further change over time. and let's not forget that headphones are more difficult to measure accurately than speakers.

 

the sr-009 and lcd-3 are two of the best measuring headphones currently on the market, but they don't sound the same. so which of them reproduces the recording most truly? and if we could ascertain beyond any doubt that say the sr-009 is the most accurate transducer of the two, what if you actually prefer the sound of the lcd-3? should you choose the headphone that you know reproduces the recording more faithfully, even when it makes some of your favorite recorded music sound less engaging due to its highly resolving nature? or do you choose the one that doesn't come as close in terms of accuracy, but is more forgiving and makes listening to your recorded music collection a more enjoyable experience? i find this dichotomy between measurements and listening rather pointless. measurements have a place in the assessment of headphones but personally speaking, i listen to headphones, not measurements.  smile.gif    

 

Another factor is the recording process. Most tracks aren't recorded as a whole, they are recorded in parts and then mixed by the engineer into their final form. There are tons of variables involved with this, to the degree that accuracy and fidelity pertains not necessarily to the music itself, but to the preferences and tendencies of the engineer. Any number of enhancements or other forms of processing can take place when working toward the final result and those variables will appeal to us in varying degrees just as the inherent qualities of a particular headphone will.   Further, our ears are not meant to be measuring instruments. Just because something shows up on a read out or graph doesn't mean our ears will necessarily detect it. For those measurements that CAN be audibly detected, the threshold will vary from person to person. Lastly, people will rely on measurements for different reasons, and this is very evident after spending some time on a site like this one. I think the majority of people want to learn about and understand the objective data because they are sincerely interested in learning more about both the characteristics of their gear and how it relates to their own preferences. But you also have people who use objective data as a way to empower them as "right fighters". Their focus is more the discourse among the members here and an interest in being able to be right about something. That is the sort of thing that can really derail a thread and detract from the otherwise good-natured exchanges that take place here. When it all comes down to it, it's just audio gear...it's not life or death...some people take things way too seriously here and measurements are often used as a means of putting someone else down. 

 

Anyway, back to the discussion....

post #135 of 191

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Edited by shimmer n roar - 7/15/12 at 11:20am
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