Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › Grado SR325is NOT as good as Sennheiser 280 Pro
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Grado SR325is NOT as good as Sennheiser 280 Pro

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Okay, so I am very let down at the moment. About two weeks ago I purchased a new pair of Grado SR325is headphones (with the brushed silver finish) and after letting them burn-in overnight everyday for two weeks, I still think they sound not half as good as my sub $100 Sennheiser 280 Pro's that I bought a few years back! I paid $400 CAD for the Grado's and I expected them to sound MUCH better!

 

The problem is that I find the Grado's to not be detailed at all. There is absolutely no bass and they lack the airy, wavy soundstage that the Senns have. Vocals are loud, but not crisp and clear; there's definately more graininess and tinnyness to the Grado's then the Senns, and I hear more instruments in the 280 Pro's.

 

Just to clear up any confusion, the audio files I am playing are at least 320kbps MP# and in many cases FLAC or CD's playing through my Asus Xonar D2X sound card in Foobar with ASIO direct output. I have compared them straight out of the sound card's output as well as with a JDS Labs Cmoy headphones amp as well as a headphone amp that I designed myself using a TPA6120A2 current based op-amp buffered by OPA2227 Burr Brown op-amps. They are being properly driven.

 

I guess my question is, does anyone know what headphones have a similar sound to the Sennheiser 280 Pro's only better (clearer etc)? I was thinking of getting the Sennheiser HD-598 headphones, but I hear they are more similar to the Grado's than other Senns? I want to feel like I am listening to the music live in concert, not through a tinny 1950's AM radio (which is what the Grado's sound like to me).

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 14

So, no chance to try before you buy or have a 30 day exchange offering?

 

Buying on just say-so is risky.

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

Understood. Unfortunately there are no stores to demo Grado's around where I live, but I can try-before-I-buy Sennheisers as well as some other brands. However, I find a 2 minute listen with headphones that haven't been broken in yet doesn't really give me much to go by. That being said, if I know what to look for I can purchase something and return it if I don't like it.

 

Right now I am considering the Sennheiser HD-598, Sennheiser HD-650, the HiFiMan HE-400 (can't demo this one), and the Bayerdynamic T-70. I'm still in the reaearch phase though, so I'm open to suggestions.
 

post #4 of 14

Regarding the 598, I've never heard them, but had the 595, as well as the HD650 (sold) and the HD600, all Senneiser.

I've bought a grado 325is a few weeks ago, and I really don't know how a Senn can be seen as sounding close to a Grado tongue.gif

They're totally opposite, laid back for the Senns (don't know about the 280) and like a punch in the face for the Grado

post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by olsenn View Post

Understood. Unfortunately there are no stores to demo Grado's around where I live, but I can try-before-I-buy Sennheisers as well as some other brands. However, I find a 2 minute listen with headphones that haven't been broken in yet doesn't really give me much to go by. That being said, if I know what to look for I can purchase something and return it if I don't like it.

 

Right now I am considering the Sennheiser HD-598, Sennheiser HD-650, the HiFiMan HE-400 (can't demo this one), and the Bayerdynamic T-70. I'm still in the reaearch phase though, so I'm open to suggestions.
 

I'll bet amazon has a 30 day return policy.  I also believe HiFiMan via their net retailer has a return policy.

 

As a 325is fan, I'll just say that I owned the 598 because I read where it was the most Grado sounding Senn.  Maybe, but I found it veiled compared to Grado.  Sold it.

 

Good luck.

post #6 of 14

Grados have a distinct sound and purpose, I guess that it just isn't for you. I happen to like the sr80i and sr325is to be much, much better than the HD280s (which I thought to be some of the worst cans I've ever heard)

 

I don't really hear the similarities between Grados and the HD598s. I'll say that they're very natural, smooth and balanced. Definitely hard for someone to dislike them. If you didn't like the graininess of the sr325is, you probably won't like the T70 much. HD650s are almost the exact opposite of the 325is, so if they were that polarizing, maybe try those out. Also don't forget the HD600s. The HE400s are slightly more aggressive than the others, but still a far way from the 325is. 

post #7 of 14
I auditioned 3 Sennheisers headphone (HD 600, HD650 , HD800) back to back against the Grado SR60i , SR80i , 125i , 225i, 325i , RS2i, PS500 and PS1000. I also had a V moda M80 that I compared with the rest.

All of them were connected directly to a CD player and AMP.

My observation:

Sennheisers never got a chance at all. I felt like I am listening inside a subway or inside a hole. Not very natural at all.

The Grado 225i has a better bass than the 325i , but still not enough bass to draw you into the beat. Grados mids and highs are fascinating though, even if you crank the volume up, it does not pierce your eardrum at all. I find my M-80 painful to the ear than the Grado, but the M80 is not that bright like the Grado. I believe it is due to the more open back design of the Grado.

My favorite is the Grado PS500, it has the brightness of the 225i , but with the bass of the M-80 with more or better soundstage.. Perfect sound signature for my test! I love the PS500i and I wish I could get one for xmas! I find the PS500i better than the PS1000 for my taste.

I am just waiting for the Vmoda M-100 reviews and see if it is a bit brighter than the M80 with more bass..... Kinda like the PS500...
With the M100, I will be able to save $300. So far the PS500 is just perfect!
Edited by Awgd8 - 10/8/12 at 5:06pm
post #8 of 14

Well there is a reason why sennheiser is King beerchug.gif

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 

So I finally bit the bullet and purchased the HiFiMan HE-400 headphones. I am much happier with these than I was with the Grados... I need to add about 10db equalization at approx. 2KHz - 8kHz, but after that, these headphones sound superb. My only gripe with them is that they have a low sensitivity, so they need more power to deliver loud music; however, I have a good headphone amplifier, so it's not a problem for me.

post #10 of 14

Equalize the other frequencies down instead of raising by 10db, you're much more likely to cause clipping/distortion if you do that digitally.

post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by olsenn View Post

So I finally bit the bullet and purchased the HiFiMan HE-400 headphones. I am much happier with these than I was with the Grados... I need to add about 10db equalization at approx. 2KHz - 8kHz, but after that, these headphones sound superb. My only gripe with them is that they have a low sensitivity, so they need more power to deliver loud music; however, I have a good headphone amplifier, so it's not a problem for me.

Congrats on the hifimans, yeah I had the 280 pro's for while thought they were great for a closed back. They don't have a typical Senn sound imo, its brighter and more aggresive. The only thing that used to annoy me was the clamp on them.

post #12 of 14

I think in many ways the Sennheisers are mirror images of the Grado sound.  While the Grados have more openness and clarity, they also have a slightly exaggerated midrange.  The Senns have a slightly sucked out midrange.  I personally find the latter unlistenable.  With both lines, these problems become less of an issue as you move up the line but I still don't like the HD800 even though the build quality is pretty fantastic.  I also don't find them comfortable as they are way too big and move around.  I love the PS1000 but don't yet own a pair.  I think the midrange on that is just about perfect.  I also like the Audeze LCD3 quite a bit and I love the Stax for clarity and detail.

 

It's always seemed odd that Grado often gets talked about for a slightly boosted midrange but Senns don't get talked about with respect to their missing midrange.  My bet is that many misunderstand that sucked out midrange to be neutral but it is in fact clearly not.

 

I do a lot of string recordings so I can tell you that guitar, cello and violin reproduction with the 325is and RS-1i and 225 is spot on in terms of instrument timbre.  And I listen to a lot of classic rock and the Grados do that in spades!

post #13 of 14
I agree with two track above, better to have a slight boost than any reduction in a set of cans. Of course one is able to taper back anything too pronounced with an equalizer.
post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by olsenn View Post

So I finally bit the bullet and purchased the HiFiMan HE-400 headphones. I am much happier with these than I was with the Grados... I need to add about 10db equalization at approx. 2KHz - 8kHz, but after that, these headphones sound superb. My only gripe with them is that they have a low sensitivity, so they need more power to deliver loud music; however, I have a good headphone amplifier, so it's not a problem for me.

 



Which Grado cans are you referring to?  I can't take mine off, they sound so good.  Maybe you need to try playing around with the equalization on them.  Also, what specific music were you using to compare?

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › Grado SR325is NOT as good as Sennheiser 280 Pro