Grado ear pain
May 25, 2012 at 1:13 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 55

musiclover666

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If you’re like me, you love the sound of your Grados. You may also be like me in that you hate the way your Grados feel or fit on your head. It has come to my attention, both physically and through reading various threads and getting feedback from other Grado owners, that pain associated with wearing and enjoying Grados can be quite common. This thread is designed to help those who experience ear pain due to the wearing of their beloved Grados.
 
The intent of this thread is to help those experiencing pain to find some relief  through tips and tricks others may have employed, currently or in the past, in order to lessen or rid yourself of ear pain associated with listening to Grados.
The problem I am experiencing is I have smallish ears and a rather pronounced antihelix. 
I have tried comfies, quarter modded comfies, reverse quarter modded comfies, flats, bowls, reversed bowls. The only ones that didn’t give me any pain were the quarter modded comfies, but that was at the cost of SQ. Flats are out of the question, 5 minutes and my antihelix is screaming for mercy. Bowls are ok, I can get away with about ½ an hour before my antihelix starts to get annoyed with me, so I have to take frequent breaks. It was the prompting of another member that I try the “Shack Hack” mod, wherein you take a replacement ear pad from Radio Shack and put it over the driver and then put the bowl on over top of that. That is, by far, the most comfortable solution I have tried, save for Senn 414 pads, which are en route as we speak.
 
So, if you have been neglecting your Grados due to discomfort, or you are about to give up on them due to comfort issues, give some of the suggestions here a try or post some of your own. As always, pictures are always helpful.
 
Cheers
 
May 25, 2012 at 1:18 AM Post #2 of 55

Magick Man

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+1 for Shack Hack, made my Grados much more comfortable.
 
May 25, 2012 at 1:40 AM Post #3 of 55

musiclover666

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"Cable agnostic and grumpy old man." lol, too funny.
 
May 25, 2012 at 1:47 AM Post #4 of 55

devouringone3

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I will stress that solutions exist (washing, combining, forming, etc...) without touching a single bit to the sound your prefer from your pads.
 
I have made my 7 Grados "unfeelable" ({in terms of their presence on my head} / comfort, [not talking about their sound, lol]) with Sennheiser PX100 and HD414 pads, that I purchase on eBay for cheap (and international shipping).
 
Ready for summer, because these are the most breathy fullsize audiophile cans available out there, thanks to their foam pads (Grado exclusive, sound changing, fine tune-able, easy to wash/replace, cheap) you should LOVE and not hate them.
 
May 25, 2012 at 1:50 AM Post #5 of 55

Damage

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Have you tried the G-Cush replacement foams?  
 
http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=232-486
 
These will make your Grados circumaural, and will lift the drivers far away from your ears.  They will, however, lessen the bass response as the drivers are now further away from your ears.  You may, or may not, experience additional sibilance as well.  A sheet of tissue takes care of the sibilance.  
 
Yes, I know it does change the characteristics a bit.  But they are still Grados at their core.  
 
Just a thought.
 
May 25, 2012 at 2:31 AM Post #6 of 55

musiclover666

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Quote:
Have you tried the G-Cush replacement foams?  
 
http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=232-486
 
These will make your Grados circumaural, and will lift the drivers far away from your ears.  They will, however, lessen the bass response as the drivers are now further away from your ears.  You may, or may not, experience additional sibilance as well.  A sheet of tissue takes care of the sibilance.  
 
Yes, I know it does change the characteristics a bit.  But they are still Grados at their core.  
 
Just a thought.

 
I haven't tried the G-Cush. 
 
May 25, 2012 at 5:28 PM Post #10 of 55

devouringone3

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Quote:
I'm just here to ponder why its so hard for Grado to design a more comfortable design.

 
All of Grado's struggling has been about improving the comfort of their headphones.
 
Using wood, the creation of bowls (John Grado said it in an interview, it's more about improving comfort than sound), bigger headphones with bagel pads (where the drivers don't touch your ears)...
 
To me sponge pads are an integral part of the Grado experience (they are also the most breathy pads, and to me, who has got used to them, the most comfortable), leather pad would change the sound for the worst in my opinion (at least balance would get real weird and Grado would need to re-adjust all of their headphones, and we would probably end up loosing the "Grado sound").
 
I personally can't feel my Grados on my head, really. But it did take me some tricks and experiences I'm willing to share :wink:.
 
Now you post away your comfort issues and we will solve them.
 
May 25, 2012 at 5:34 PM Post #11 of 55

musiclover666

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+1
 
May 25, 2012 at 5:41 PM Post #12 of 55

GREQ

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I have exactly the same problem with my antihelix.
The biggest thing that did it for me was stretching the headband out a fair bit. I only use my Grados at home so having them almost loose on my head is never a problem - actually it accentuates how feather light they are (RS2i unmodded).
Now I only feel the slight pressure of the outer rim of the donut bowls around my ears as they are rather small and fit inside the bowls almost like circumaurals. 
 
May 25, 2012 at 9:45 PM Post #14 of 55

Maverickmonk

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On my left ear, my antihelix actually sticks out farther than the lobe of my ear. Now that my hair is shorter (And is going to stay shorter), Even the "comfies" are, well...not. after an hour or so the comfies/quarter modded comfies begin to hurt.  is the rat shack mod still worth a shot?
 
May 26, 2012 at 12:38 AM Post #15 of 55

musiclover666

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Quote:
On my left ear, my antihelix actually sticks out farther than the lobe of my ear. Now that my hair is shorter (And is going to stay shorter), Even the "comfies" are, well...not. after an hour or so the comfies/quarter modded comfies begin to hurt.  is the rat shack mod still worth a shot?

 
Same problem here. My antihelix sticks out further than the rest of my ear. The Shack Mod has helped me a bit. I am STILL waiting for my Senn 414 pads. I am looking forward to giving them a go both sonically and comfort wise.
 
Cheers,
Dan
 

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