Grado SR60i Headphones

  1. FlobHobNob
    Go to can under 80 bucks
    Written by FlobHobNob
    Published Apr 28, 2012
    Pros - Great sound, comfort,
    Cons - Leakage, small soundstage
    To start off, this was my first set of audiophile headphones and let me tell you I was blown away. I've had them for about two years now and I havn't had many complants. As I've already stated, these are the headphones that got me into listening to music the right way. To give you a backround check I'll give you a list of headphones that I've auditioned; Koss Dj pro 100, Beats by Dre studio and solo, Bose QC15, Sennheiser hd598, and multiple Skullcandy's ( sadly). So one with the review.
    Comfort ; The comfort of these headphones was good. The I pads(comfies)where suprisingly comfortable for being supra oral, but sometimes I found my ears being itchy after about 2 hours of listening, but overall I found them comfortable.
    Isolation; This is one of these headphones weaker points. However these are open headphones, so I didnt really expect great Isolation and you shouldn't but these for that. So that means these aren't very portable either because of one other big reason.
    Leakage; I wouldnt normal post this one a review, but holy crap. These headphones are like portable stereos when you are listening to music at a semi loud listening level. It's almost comical and this is the main reason these arn't portable.
    Soundstage; The sound stage on this is like you are sitting on the stage and the band is playing around, not great but ok. I have to add that all the instuments are placed exactly where I want them and the imaging of the headphones is simply fantastic.

    The Sound

    The lows; If I had to describe these in one word, that word would be tight. They dont seem to extend super deep but they pack a punch. Many people would say that these are "bass-light", but I have to dissagree with them.I wouldnt recommend these for rap, dubstep, or electronica, but the have enough bass for what I listen to( rock). I meen of course you can definetly more bass than what these have to offer but the quality of the bass is good.
    Mids; This is where these headphones really shine and the reason I bought them. No other brand can replicate the sound of a guitar like Grados, and I stand by my statement. Not only do they do guitars well but vocals, saxaphones, you name it all sound great on these cans. These headphones have better mids than some of my 300 dollar headphones.
    Highs; The highs on the headphones are prestine. They are very rarly harsh and fatiging. Cymbols, sirens flutes, all sound great on these headphones.
    Genre Recommendation; I would recommend these to anyone whos loves rock music, blues, and jazz. These are very aggresive sounding witch is why the are great for rock. I woundn't recommend these for hip hop or rap or anything that requires bass because I think you may be unsatisfide
    The Jist; Overall I think these are great headphones for 80 dollars and for that price point I think are the king. For fast music under 100 it doesn't get much better than this.
  2. sennheiserhd485
    I love them!
    Written by sennheiserhd485
    Published Mar 6, 2012
    Pros - Great for rock, midrange transparency
    Cons - Could be a little more comfortable
    Highly recommended for rock! They also reproduce cymbals VERY well!
  3. Blue Boat
    Grado love
    Written by Blue Boat
    Published Oct 25, 2011
    Pros - rock and metal sounds great, quite affordable, can be modified easily
    Cons - comfort - may not be for everyone
    My set-up consists of my laptop running Windows 7, Fiio E7 and my SR60s. 
    Sound quality
    I never thought I'd ever get an eargasm. That changed when I got my Grado SR60. Out of the box, they sounded slightly too cold for my taste. I played some of my favourite tracks through them and I realised that the SR60's strengths lie in it's ability to reproduce electric guitar solos. The intro of Throes of Perdition by Trivium really brings out the monster in these cans. The Pixies' Where Is My Mind is also very well reproduced by these cans. 
    Crazy as this may sound, I felt that the SR60 lacks sparkle in the higher frequencies. They respond well to equalisation, so I decided to sparkle up the highs by pushing the 4-10kHz bands up a few decibels. This also makes the headphones sound brighter at lower volume. The SR60 is also quite detailed, but it is not analytical. I would describe the whole sound signature as one that would make you headbang/toe-tap a lot.
    Straight out of the box, the bass was slightly disappointing. The Grados definitely thump in bassier songs but the bass didn't linger around, making them unsuitable for genres like dubstep where you want to experience that cavernous drop. The musical presentation of the SR60 is very upfront and personal. They don't do 3D imaging very well, even with the Dolby headphone plugin. Not necessarily a bad thing, as I prefer an in-your-face presentation with most songs.
    In a rather short side by side comparison with the SR225, the SR60 loses in terms of detail presentation. The SR225 has a slightly more airy sound to me, while the SR60 is a little more congested. The details are quite apparently if you focus on the music, otherwise they both sound really similar. Replacing my quarter modded yellow ear pads with L-Cush bowls made the SR60 sound a lot more like the SR225. With the bowls, I'd say the SR60s are 90% of the way there. 
    Out of the box, the comfort was... not there. The standard comfies Grado supplies you with are made of a really rough foam material and that was the main reason I got the yellow ear pads from Sennheiser. Clamping force hasn't changed much over 2 months but the metal piece under the vinyl head band can be easily shaped to make it less clampy. The SR60 is rather light, so weight is not an issue. The supra-aural design also prevents the heaty sensation you get from wearing closed circumaural headphones for too long.
    The design of the lower end Grados on the Prestige line is quite similar, apart from the circular button on the mesh and the cable. I like the retro/vintage-hip look of the Grados. I think the older non-i cups are better looking though. 
    On the SR60 and other lower end Grados, the head band is made of vinyl. This isn't a big problem as the weight of these headphones are still relatively low. If I ever shaved my head, I would get a leather head band from jmoney or jinteddy. But vinyl's fine at the moment.
    Driving them with Clip+
    Not advisable. The SR60 is quite sensitive and can reach very high volume on a small portable mp3 player like the Clip+ but the audio quality is not as good as plugging it into a PC. The SR60 also does well when paired with an amplifier or a better DAC - less hiss, cleaner presentation.

    For those looking for a good headphone within a $100 budget, I would definitely recommend the SR60. You can even upgrade your Grados bit by bit, part by part as you go along. Wood shells, alu-shells, Magnum drivers, custom head bands, etc. 
  4. koolkat
    SR60i for rock? Hmm.
    Written by koolkat
    Published Aug 25, 2011
    Pros - Light, supra-aural, retro design, thick cable.
    Cons - Y link is a little flimsy, not as comfortable as some other headphones I've tried, namely Sennheisers.
    I got these from a local shop for SGD120, about USD99.
    Rewritten the whole review.
    First impressions: These headphones are meh. A little overrated, doesn't carry bass very well.
    Current impressions: Great headphones for dynamic rock with lots of guitar, drums and forward vocals.
    I have modded my Grado SR60i a little. I had the plastic grill and button removed, a painstaking task, but well worth the time and effort. I have quarter-modded the comfies that the stock SR60 comes with and I have also removed the white cloth that covers the driver protectors.
    Also poked 2 holes on each cup to increase the bass.
    Some pics to illustrate my point
    Q-mod with cloth removed.
    By cutting the bit of foam off the comfies and removing the bit
    of white cloth that covers the driver protector, I've made the drivers
    slightly more prone to dirt, dust and hair
    since there's less material between the driver and your ears, music
    sounds a little cleaner and brighter overall.
    Grill and button removed. Grado ring missing on the right.
    Anything that covers the opening is an obstruction to the airflow.
    If you cup your hands over the chamber opening, music sounds
    a little trapped and muffled.
    So I removed the grill and button. There's not a huge difference in
    sound but every little change can make you go from liking your
    Grados to loving them.
    End result: Less obstruction - clearer sound.
    Two holes poked.
    SR60s aren't really known for being bassy. They can produce
    that little thump, but they're far from being bass monsters.
    I've always thought that poking holes in there would cause 
    an increase in bass quantity which would screw up the other
    frequencies but I decided to poke one on each side just for
    the lulz.
    While it did tame the other frequencies a little (imo), it didn't
    make the overall sound too muddy. The SR60 still sounds
    a little harsh on some songs but poking the holes gave music
    a little more body.
    All this is very subjective, what works for me might not work for
    you, vice versa. Out of curiosity, I poked another hole in each of 
    the cups, so that's 2 holes each.
    At first I thought the music sounded a little muddy and congested,
    but nope. I feel that 2 holes is the sweet spot for me. But to be fair,
    my FiiO E7 separated the musical instruments better than my onboard
    sound card.
    Without the E7, music sounded a little bloated and congested. 
    For those with a poor onboard sound, then an amp/dac like the E7
    will really make the SR60s shine.
    Comfort is still an issue. Clamping force out of the box is straight up
    overpowered. I couldn't wear the SR60 for more than an hour straight.
    A couple of guys suggested that I stretch out the headband since the
    metal is quite ductile. That helped. The comfies pads are made of 
    some low quality material that's quite uncomfortable.
    It looks good alright, but I prefer the Senn HD414 pads for comfort.
    Right now I can wear the SR60 on my head for 2 - 3 hours at a time.
    They still hurt a little, but nothing too unbearable.
    I'm not a true believer of burn-in. 
    Comfort improved over time but I haven't had the Grados long enough to see if the headphones suddenly turn magical. Bought this roughly a month ago.
    All in all
    Great for alt. rock and indie stuff.
    They're worth the price. Definitely.
    Some song recommendations
    The Killers - This River is Wild (Sam's Town)
    The Killers - All These Things That I've Done (Hot Fuss)
    Blue October - Into the Ocean 
    1. bcasey25raptor
      I own the Alessandro MS1 which is a lot like these and I feel they are great for rock and metal. But surprisingly I like my laid back Shure SRH840 more for metal. Perhaps I am not the norm.
      bcasey25raptor, Aug 25, 2011
    2. koolkat
      Imo, it depends on the type of rock you're listening to. I find these great for bands like Panic at the Disco, where the bass really isn't prominent, but for Red Hot Chilli Peppers, I'd definitely go for my HD438s.
      koolkat, Aug 26, 2011
    3. Tefloon
      Yeah, laid back headphones are better for certain kind of metal (i.e. most of the kinds I enjoy) IMHO.
      Tefloon, Aug 27, 2011
  5. bentonpatrick24
    Amazing Start
    Written by bentonpatrick24
    Published Aug 8, 2011
    Pros - Great Sound Quality, Comfortable, Great Value
    Cons - Design, Some Quality Issues
    Sound is amazing once it is burnt in. The comfort level for me increased after a couple of months. Great Value, Sounds a lot better than my Bose On Ear headphones that cost 100 dollars more. 
    When I first got them the left one fell apart and I had to put it back together. Then later the left cable came loose and I had to soder it back together.
  6. peterabb
    Great sound great value!
    Written by peterabb
    Published Jul 30, 2011
    Pros - Sound awesome
    Cons - sound leakage (acoustically necessary)
    Definitely worthy of all the praise for sound quality!
    1. Ikelmonster
      agreed, just wait till they burn in a bit too, they open up nicely
      Ikelmonster, Jul 30, 2011
    2. peterabb
      Really?, should I just use them normally or would you suggest white noise or something else specific?
      Thanks for your reply.
      peterabb, Jul 31, 2011
    3. peterabb
      You were correct. I've owned them for over 6 months and they've indeed gotten much better (warmer)
      peterabb, Jan 25, 2012
  7. Ikelmonster
    My first set of hi-quality headphones; or, from "meh" to "wow!"
    Written by Ikelmonster
    Published Jun 23, 2011
    Pros - Awesome sound, vintage look, don't require an amp, ability to upgrade
    Cons - Uncomfortable until worn in, leak lots of sound
    When my 3rd set of Bose noise-canceling ear buds broke, I decided to look into a different type of headphone. The first site I stumbled upon was CNET, and for a couple of hours I poured over their headphone reviews. I eventually decided on the Grado SR60i because of their low price and the high regard that everyone held for them. I drove to the nearest audio store knowing which pair I was going to purchase, however I also tried a couple other Grado models that were on display (mostly the 80 and 225). In all honesty, aside from the sound difference over-ear headphones provide, I couldn't really tell a difference from the ear buds I had been using for years and years. Despite my initial reaction, I still bought the 60's, and headed home.
    My first listen with my new 60's was even more of a let down as I realized just how much the sound leaked. With my girlfriend across the room, I couldn't turn the volume up beyond 2 or 3 levels on my Macbook Pro. I was dismayed; not only was the sound not mind blowing, but I had to be in a room alone to be able to listen to the phones at a reasonable volume. Instead of giving up on the Grados however, I again ignored my initial reaction and kept the phones. 
    Let me fast forward to June 21. I was sitting on my couch after work, zoning out on the internet, with my Grados on and my itunes blaring away. By this time, the 60's were more comfortable, but I had still yet to fall in love with the sound they produced. Then, all of a sudden,it happened: The song Hold My Finger by Sikth came on, and I had to stop reading whatever I was skimming on the internets because of what was going on in my ears. As the guitars switched back and forth between the left and right side and the bass noodled in the background and the cymbals crashed, I realized that I could hear it all, and not only could I hear everything but it was clear and warm and bright and a million other descriptions.
    I have no idea if this sudden epiphany of sound was the result of burning the phones in, or of my ears getting used to the open-on-ear design, or what, but whatever the case, I definitely love these headphones now. People on this site and others love to use hyperbole to describe certain headphones, and I think I am getting a little bit closer to speaking hyperbolically about these 60s.
    Despite the leaking sound, these headphones are the s*** (in a good way). Oh, and I also found out that they are easily if I needed another reason to like them!
    Also, on a side and closing note, Sikth is an incredible band and really showcases the ability of these headphones, check em out if you have any affinity for rock that dabbles in metal and weirdness.
      MegaMushroom likes this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. Ikelmonster
      Haha hell yes
      Ikelmonster, Sep 15, 2012
    3. JGrignon
      Wow, great review. Whenever a story is applied to a review, it makes everything oh-so-much more meaningful. Looking into getting a pair of Grado's one day as my first open-back headphones. After this review, I am considering the 60i's.
      JGrignon, Sep 25, 2012
    4. vanDelft
      vanDelft, Jul 7, 2015
  8. Oxyuranus
    phenomenal cans
    Written by Oxyuranus
    Published Apr 18, 2011
    Pros - price, bass, clarity, durability, design
    Cons - sound leak
    Let me start off by saying I've been a competitive PC gamer for a quite a while now. I never really cared about sound quality. I've had plenty of overpriced headsets labeled as "gaming headsets" from companies such as Razer, Steeleries, Logitech, etc. Never actually listened to a good pair of headphones.  
    with some research I found the Grado SR60i's. I went to J&R and bought them. I was so confident that they would sound good that I didn't even try them out before I bought them. listened to a variety of music on the subway ride home and I was blown away by the quality. I was not aware that music could sound so good. 
    I couldn't be happier. i'll be content with these for a while. best $80 i've ever spent. they sound great and look good, too. 
  9. blufox4900
    Noob friendly headphones that'll suck you into audiophile zen
    Written by blufox4900
    Published Feb 24, 2011
    Pros - Clarity. Rich mids. Easy to drive. VALUE!
    Cons - Sound leakage. Comfort for glasses wearers
    Let me just say that these are my very first set of high quality cans..ever and that I'm completely new to all of this. That being said, the Grado SR60i's have certainly changed the way I listen to music..probably forever! The first thing I noticed once I got used their sound signature was the rich mid tones where all the instruments and vocals shine. They weren't kidding when they say grados are king of rock, play some RHCP Stadium Arcadium lossless and prepare to be blown away.

    These things are also pretty easy to drive. You can just plug them right away into your DAP without assistance. My sansa clip+ can drive these perfectly fine.

    Oh and did I mentioned the incredible value?! Wasn't expecting this kind of quality for $80. I am a noob but I have gotten used to my brother's panasonic RP-HJE900 IEMs and these things are on par, at least to my ears. Your mileage may vary.

    There are a few cons, though. First of all is the leakage. It certainly isn't as bad as most people make it out to be but it's something to take note of. People immediately next to you can hear what you're listening and the music can be heard in very quite rooms. That being said, they're not bad. These are, afterall, grados with an open design. It's just something you have to accept.

    Another thing might just be me but sometimes after a while the headphones start to feel very uncomfortable..even painful due to the fact that I wear glasses. They put pressure onto the frame and they just dig into your ears. Easy fix is to just lift the glasses frame a bit above the ears and let the SR60i's hold them on and problem solved. Just something to take note of.

    That being said, these things don't disappoint.
  10. bigshoe83
    These beauties have a great sound and are extremely comfortable for long periods
    Written by bigshoe83
    Published Feb 22, 2011
    Pros - super sound, low price, good build quality
    Cons - haven't really found any yet, maybe a little lacking on bass
    I love these babies.  Granted they are my first decent headphones they sound awesome.  I didn't realize headphones could sound this great!