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Joseph Grado Signature Product "HP2i" upgraded HP 1000 headphone; information journal and... - Page 2

post #16 of 248
Thread Starter 

Maybe he has a special workbench that gripes and locks onto the cups by the six hexagonal (driver holding) screws, in order to immobilize the individual cups when removing the gimbals (he did told me on the phone that he disassembles it "completely"), milling and enlarging the cable entry hole, and doing such heavier deeds that requires the headphones to stay firmly into place? And it's the six "tentacles" of this workbench that would inevitably leave behind those marks? Anyway, that's one hypothesis :P hope it's not too bizarre sounding.

 

 

Thanks MuppetFace for your heartwarming comment!

 

 

Here's the two headphones I've been listening to exclusively lately:

 

But I've had small problem with my Grado HPA-1. It runs on two 9 volts battery and I've got four of them. Lately one of them suffered some kind of energy memory loss, it won't charge enough power anymore and last only 5 minutes in the amp after a full charge. So with three batteries left I can really only function on one pair, since the amp requires one per channel, and I get interrupted everytime they require charging. Luckily I bought a protection plan (which I rarely ever do) if I can't save my fourth battery.

 

Anyway, it remains that for now I still need to listen to a second device from time to time because of that, and it's a bit annoying yeah. My GT40 doesn't sound the same as my HPA-1, it has less authority and sounds brighter.

 

Here's a nice picture I took accidentally while trying to capture the inside of my HP-2i cup, with the use of a flashlight.


Edited by devouringone3 - 8/17/12 at 4:58pm
post #17 of 248

That is one original headphone stand you got there

post #18 of 248

what kind of 'protection plan' do you have for the hpa-1?  did you do a review of that amp anywhere?  have you compared it to the ra-1?

 

very interesting and nice review of the hp2i.  i think i'm one of those (i own the hp2) who's a bit sceptical whether and to what extent the hp2 has been "improved," but i respect your views, and will avidly read your updates.  thanks!

post #19 of 248
Thread Starter 

I have a protection plan I bought to go with my rechargeable 9 volts batteries ;) (a pack of four with the charger, on B&Hphotovideo). One of them can't hold a charge anymore. I'm trying to empty it completely and then fully recharge to see if I'll need to claim a replacement.

 

I'm glad this thread is bringing together new HP 1000 owners that are maybe not into Grado much anymore or that aren't readily identifiable by their profile.

 

 

I haven't reviewed the HPA-1 anywhere, it's my first headphone amp and I have nothing to compare it with. What I know for sure is that it's my most powerful headamp above my GT40 DAC, laptop jack and mp3 players; and that it has a low impedance output. The sound is very full and enjoyable to me.

 

Like the RA-1, the HPA-1 (and -2)'s circuit is that of a cMoy, quite literally, but uses some of the best parts that were available at the time (potentiometer, RCA jacks) and custom-made capacitors and headphone jack, along with that Grado opamp. It's quite a solid box and has some very durable hardware/switches.

 

It was compared against the RA-1 as similar sounding but less grainy... and that's the only simile I could find on Head-fi.

 

 

Thank you, the second post(#2) here (that I'm calling the "core of the review") is on it's way. I've re-read and corrected my first post a few times already and I don't plan on changing it much anymore... so it is to say that next update will be all that you've been waiting for ;)


Edited by devouringone3 - 8/17/12 at 8:42pm
post #20 of 248
Thread Starter 

Still oily:

 (that is after two days)

 

I hope that by doing that I'm not letting too much of their goodness and sound quality drip away :/

 

I was a little bit scared that the surplus of oil infiltrate the headphone cups and drivers. I know it sounds more like a bad dream scenario but I'm just exaggeratedly preventive like that.


Edited by devouringone3 - 8/18/12 at 9:25pm
post #21 of 248
Thread Starter 

*So far I've only used taped bowls with them, and I have been using taped bowls with all of my other Grados for quite a while already. With taped bowls, compared to my HP-1, my HP-2i sounds bass-heavy.

 

Little update, I like them all. Yep, I was slowly falling in love with my upgraded pair when I reverted back to my stock HP-1 and realized I was still as much in love. The upgraded flats are great, and they have way more synergy with my HP-2i and are better than my taped bowls, for that headphone.

 

Right now, from what I've experienced I feel like the HP-2i is like a "bass-heavy" version of the HP-1000 (that's why they don't need taped bowls to increase bass anymore, to speak simply). Of course it's an approximate/gross expression that only describe the sound as a whole. I do want to break it into parts in my full review, as I think most of the specific changes in these different parts are albeit relatively small, well defined, tasteful and worthy additions to notice. Also it's quite a dramatic change I must say (very noticeable), more than I expected it to be both in the macroscopical (like "increased bass") and the microscopical scale. I won't talk about the latter scale right now because I feel like listening to my HP-2i with my taped bowls and HPA-1 obscured my view, and that it was an error from the start to do that... the sound was too dark and bass+midbass was overpowering.

 

 

From memory I can't compare the "i" flat pads with what I remember of the TTVJ flats, but I think the HP-2i is really better tuned to function with them (that they are clearly made to go together and have synergy, more than say a HP-1 and TTVJ flats).


Edited by devouringone3 - 8/21/12 at 3:07pm
post #22 of 248

Gotta admit, I'm a bit disappointed to hear that the HP2i is a "bass heavy HP1000" as I already thought the HP2 stock had a wee bit too much emphasis down below (more than it measured, because of its harmonic distortion).

post #23 of 248

Thanks for the review and sorry to hear about your disappointment (reading between the lines).

After reading your posts I quickly check my HP1i (upgraded a few years ago). There are none of the little mistakes ( damaged screw holes; hanging cables etc..) you mentioned. Also they sound noticeable different from the stock pair. I don't have any stock pairs anymore so can only go by my memory. I did do an AB with my HP2 at the time. Joe was using that particular pair of HP1i to work on the fine tuning of his microphone. I took them to the last San Francisco bay area meet before I left California and the gentleman next table to me and Purrin had a pair of HP1 so we were comparing the two. His comment was that my pair sounded very different from his and much more forward. My take at the time was that the upgrade made improvement on all department but they still had the same sound signature (which is different what the other HP1 owner thought).

I had another two pairs of HP2 upgraded by Joe and to me they sound the same as my modded HP1i.

The latest pair of HP2i is on its way and I should get it tomorrow and we will see. Unfortunately I don't have any stock HP1000 to compare anymore.

I really appreciate your honest opinions about something you spent a lot of money on- something I try to do myself. We shouldn't fall in love with something just because we own it; spent a fortune on it or it was worked on by someone we respect. Things can happen. Joe is 89 years old ( he said he was not 88 wink.gif)now and no one goes on forever.

post #24 of 248
Hmmmm...I would not classify what I am hearing as being a bass heavy version. I would say stock sounded muddier and more congested in comparison (please take into account this is by memory). I would say to my ears the bass is more detailed and textured which makes it hit harder and is cleaner, which I guess could be perceived as being bassier. To my ears the bass is cleaner and more articulate.
post #25 of 248
Quote:
Originally Posted by recstar24 View Post

Hmmmm...I would not classify what I am hearing as being a bass heavy version. I would say stock sounded muddier and more congested in comparison (please take into account this is by memory). I would say to my ears the bass is more detailed and textured which makes it hit harder and is cleaner, which I guess could be perceived as being bassier. To my ears the bass is cleaner and more articulate.

That's exactly the same as what I heard when I AB the "i" and the stock versions.

The bass on the upgraded version was actually a little leaner if anything.

post #26 of 248
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcf View Post

Thanks for the review and sorry to hear about your disappointment (reading between the lines).

After reading your posts I quickly check my HP1i (upgraded a few years ago). There are none of the little mistakes ( damaged screw holes; hanging cables etc..) you mentioned. Also they sound noticeable different from the stock pair. I don't have any stock pairs anymore so can only go by my memory. I did do an AB with my HP2 at the time. Joe was using that particular pair of HP1i to work on the fine tuning of his microphone. I took them to the last San Francisco bay area meet before I left California and the gentleman next table to me and Purrin had a pair of HP1 so we were comparing the two. His comment was that my pair sounded very different from his and much more forward. My take at the time was that the upgrade made improvement on all department but they still had the same sound signature (which is different what the other HP1 owner thought).

I had another two pairs of HP2 upgraded by Joe and to me they sound the same as my modded HP1i.

The latest pair of HP2i is on its way and I should get it tomorrow and we will see. Unfortunately I don't have any stock HP1000 to compare anymore.

I really appreciate your honest opinions about something you spent a lot of money on- something I try to do myself. We shouldn't fall in love with something just because we own it; spent a fortune on it or it was worked on by someone we respect. Things can happen. Joe is 89 years old ( he said he was not 88 wink.gif)now and no one goes on forever.

please, you can do a little comparison between the HP-2i and Magnum V4?

i ask because i had "only" the HP-2 to compare with the magnum V4

post #27 of 248
Quote:
Originally Posted by alota View Post

please, you can do a little comparison between the HP-2i and Magnum V4?

i ask because i had "only" the HP-2 to compare with the magnum V4

I did listen to them side by side and it turned out to be like a contest between flats vs bowls. 

The Magnum (with bowls) are very detailed and have a more forward sound than the HP1000i. The HP1000i are much less in-your-face. Both of them have good bass that I like- solid and lean. I found the Magnum a bit bright overall with the bowl pads. Changing to flats helped the mids but the bass was softened (much like tape mod on bowl which I don't like). 

I'm glad that I have both of them but prefer the HP1000i for their more sophisticated sound.

I am sure when Rhydon comes out with his new headphones in the future a lot of the little issues will be ironed out.

post #28 of 248
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcf View Post

 

I am sure when Rhydon comes out with his new headphones in the future a lot of the little issues will be ironed out.

thank you.

i´m waiting for this. no, i really hope for thiswink.gif

post #29 of 248

With so many peoples having their HP1000's improved,my stock HP2's will soon be one of a kind.wink.gif

post #30 of 248
Thread Starter 

Well I did all those test with taped bowls... you guys put me in doubt whether or not those reveal the true nature of the Grados I listen to. I thought I was safe to do that because I was only focusing on a relative change/difference in sound of headphones (using the same pads), for my comparative review. 

 

Taped bowls change a lot of John Grados but very little Joe's, compared to stock bowls.

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