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First Audiophile Headphones (under $100): Grado SR60i Best Choice?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by jaycee1, Apr 20, 2013.
  1. jaycee1
    I've done a ton of research, reading lots of reviews here, and on amazon. I already have a decent set of headphones: the jvc harx 700. I like them, but I don't 'love' them. 
    They're fairly close to neutral, with a bit of extra bass, and a little bit of treble roll off. 
    I'd like a second set of headphones which offer a bit more excitement and emotional involvement. I'm considering the grado sr60i's. Even with a pair of s cushions, the price is still south of $100, which is important to me. 
    Based on the reviews, I'm sure I'll be getting great sound quality. However, I'm a bit concerned about comfort and the ability to use these for longer listening sessions. Will the s cushions be sufficient to allow me to listen for longer sessions?
    Also, some reviewers complain that the sound can be fatiguing. I'm hoping that this criticism is limited to:
    a. certain types of recordings only: ie sources which are very treble heavy
    b. listening sessions at high volume.
    Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks!
  2. NiceCans Contributor
    Grado's can be bright to many folks, but with flat or comfy pads it is smoother . . . some people merely consider them crisp or lively.
    Once the pads are broken in (or washed for softness) Grado's can be pretty comfortable, but bending the headband outward to loosen them increases comfort.
    But this can cause them to fly off your head if you get too carried away enjoying the music [​IMG]
  3. jaycee1
    What if I avoid the headband altogether, by going with igrado? These use the same drivers so they should sound almost identical? I would strongly prefer a traditional headband, however. 
    The grado sr60i seems to be the best value around, and are universally praised. I was under the impression that the "i" revision had mellowed out the sound signature considerably. However, it seems like I am being cautioned that the grado's still have a bit too much in the high frequency range, at least for some listeners. 
    Aside from igrado, what are my alternatives for a similar sounding headphone, which has a bit less high frequency emphasis?
  4. whirlwind
    SR60i is a great bang for your buck, my son just snagged a pair last week and I smiled immediately after putting them on and listening to some AC/DC
    Great headphones at that price IMO.
  5. GREQ
    This is almost correct. Graods DO really shine at low volumes - it's like they've got a built in 'loudness' switch like on old receiver amps that boost the treble and bass for low volume listening.
    Listening at moderate volumes can get fatiguing on Grados - listening at loud volume is just masochism. 
    Others have mentioned that the elder members of our community prefer the Grado sound because of the inevitable loss of high frequency hearing over the years. A lot of the younger folk don't appreciate the extra treble. 
    Also every now and then there are recordings that have too much treble for any headphone, not just Grado. 
  6. MetalHealth30
    The only problem is when listening to metal and the temptation to turn the volume up is just too much. [​IMG] Otherwise I wholeheartedly agree!
  7. cel4145
    The SR60i come with the S cush. You will want to try the L cush pads for better bass response, a little more detail from the mids and highs, and better comfort. To soften them up, wash them gently with mild hand soap and water and let them dry out overnight.

    I think it's the tendency to want to run the headphones as loud as the amp will go without distorting (or even with mild distortion) which is what makes them unappealing to some of the younger generation; they can be fatiguing at high volumes. I agree that the Grados sound excellent at more moderate listening volumes. That's one thing that's great about them.
  8. GREQ
    Maybe that's why kids never listen to their elders... they've all got hearing loss.
    But I know what you mean. Over a decade ago I also enjoyed an unhealthy dose of bass.
  9. jaycee1
    So, listening to grado's (the sr60i in particular) at low volume is non fatiguing, correct? 
  10. GREQ
  11. jaycee1
    Thanks. I may pick up both the 60i and igrado's then. 

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