Grado Fan Club!
Nov 5, 2015 at 8:09 PM Post #28,861 of 47,843

stacker45

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  Buy the GH-1(which come with "stock" (L) cushions and buy some Grado (G) cushions and you'll have 2 Grados in one! Can't go wrong for a total of $695.00. 
smile.gif

 
I agree, and we should also mention that with the G-cush, the GH-1 can play in the PS1000's sand box, and since it's a special edition, it should at least hold it's value.
 
Nov 5, 2015 at 8:15 PM Post #28,862 of 47,843

GreenBow

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  jesus.. f* me.
 
your mere mention just led me.
i just ordered some mojo rather impulsively.. this after placing an order for the aune x1s maybe a week ago. returning that sharpish. it is supposed to arrive tomorrow lol.
 
i'll be pairing these with modded grados: new symphones magnum v6s and hopefully the 3d cup models specifically intended for the v6 as well.
 
this coming from a person whose only ever owned (for the past five years)
ath-ad700s
and
hotusb1
 
the unanimity of the reviews just had me by the scruff of the neck.


Be aware what you want you DAC-Headphone amp for. I just had a peek at the Aune X1s and it is desktop based, and has audio-in or specifically analogue in. The Mojo does not. The Mojo is also geared towards being a portable device. Add it to an average sounding DAP for awesome audio on-the-go. It means for desktop, you would be always allowing the battery to run down then re-charge. I don't see why you cant leave it plugged in if you want for desktop. However that might degrade battery life. As they always say, don't leave a battery in a laptop, if the laptop is permanently plugged in. However many people use the portable Chord Hugo for permanent hi-fi. I guess then, some are going to use the Mojo in the same way.
 
When I call the Mojo a DAC-headphone amp, I mean it is a DAC with headphone out. I hope I didn't mislead. I should edit my post above. It's switchable to line-out too for feeding to an amplifier and speakers etc. I hope it's what you're looking for then. Otherwise that Aune X1s is a nice looking piece of kit.
 
You are quite correct though that unanimity of reviews stands out. If like me you basically like DAC then it's quite a hot choice. I ordered one too. However I am having a wobble because to be fair my current Meridian Explorer is doing a good job. I always imagined putting higher end headphones on it before even considering other hardware.
 
I do like that What Hi-Fi pair the Mojo with Grado 325e. I have the 225e so I will see.
 
I believe the beauty of the Chord DACs is in how they work. Unlike many other DACs they don't use off the shelf DAC chips. They use a programmable chip. Technically I understand that they are doing much better interpolation. Some people describe them as analogue sounding (I guess from the interpolation) with astonishing detail. The Mojo uses the same analogue section out as the Hugo, so that should be good.
 
Nov 5, 2015 at 11:46 PM Post #28,863 of 47,843

equedadoii

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Be aware what you want you DAC-Headphone amp for. I just had a peek at the Aune X1s and it is desktop based, and has audio-in or specifically analogue in. The Mojo does not. The Mojo is also geared towards being a portable device. Add it to an average sounding DAP for awesome audio on-the-go. It means for desktop, you would be always allowing the battery to run down then re-charge. I don't see why you cant leave it plugged in if you want for desktop. However that might degrade battery life. As they always say, don't leave a battery in a laptop, if the laptop is permanently plugged in. However many people use the portable Chord Hugo for permanent hi-fi. I guess then, some are going to use the Mojo in the same way.
 
When I call the Mojo a DAC-headphone amp, I mean it is a DAC with headphone out. I hope I didn't mislead. I should edit my post above. It's switchable to line-out too for feeding to an amplifier and speakers etc. I hope it's what you're looking for then. Otherwise that Aune X1s is a nice looking piece of kit.
 
You are quite correct though that unanimity of reviews stands out. If like me you basically like DAC then it's quite a hot choice. I ordered one too. However I am having a wobble because to be fair my current Meridian Explorer is doing a good job. I always imagined putting higher end headphones on it before even considering other hardware.
 
I do like that What Hi-Fi pair the Mojo with Grado 325e. I have the 225e so I will see.
 
I believe the beauty of the Chord DACs is in how they work. Unlike many other DACs they don't use off the shelf DAC chips. They use a programmable chip. Technically I understand that they are doing much better interpolation. Some people describe them as analogue sounding (I guess from the interpolation) with astonishing detail. The Mojo uses the same analogue section out as the Hugo, so that should be good.

 
so, as i said, it was definitely rather impulsive of me, in the sense that i still know f*all about all of this.
but then again, the x1s was rather impulsive as well.
 
i am a bit confused about what you're saying
 
of what little i do know, again super fundamental, the usb  mojo merely converts the digital signal (flacs/mp3s from my laptop) and from that, i'd be connecting directly to my headphone. so:
 
laptop > usb input on the mojo > headphone output into my modded grados.
 
what does audio/analogue in mean in relation to this?
i thought the only ports i need are a headphone output and a usb input.
does the mojo not have all the necesary i/o slots i need for my intended setup?
how is line out related to my intended headphone setup? i thought it's just as simple as usb input > headphone output.
 
the x1s is a dac/amp with headphone out
and the mojo is a dac/amp with 2x headphone out ports.
so that's where i'm confused about you saying you might've been a bit misleading.
 
there is a separate port for charging as well (sitting right next to the usb input).
i thought it powers itself just by virtue of being connected to the usb port?
 
i don't really intend to use it as a mobile dac/amp anyhow. maybe in some instances, but it doesn't seem super relevant to me.
though perhaps i'm missing the point?
 
your input is super helpful.
thanks again.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 12:18 AM Post #28,864 of 47,843

Krutsch

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  ...
 
I believe the beauty of the Chord DACs is in how they work. Unlike many other DACs they don't use off the shelf DAC chips. They use a programmable chip. Technically I understand that they are doing much better interpolation. 
 
...

 
Ahhhh, the power of marketing...
 
Chord uses FPGAs for their digital filters, which doesn't offer a *sound quality* advantage over an ASIC design, but is possible to upgrade via software in the field. ASIC designs are more expensive to develop, but usually run faster and are cheaper to produce, once the design is mature.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 1:24 AM Post #28,865 of 47,843

GreenBow

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@equedadoii it's because the Aune X1s has an analogue input that I mentioned specifically that the Mojo has none. You are correct that the mojo will cover your requirements; laptop>DAC>headphones.
 
The Aune X1s will also function as a traditional headphone amp. Meaning it will amplify from a device with a headphone or line out. (Eg like the headphone out from a laptop, or from a portable player that doesn't have a digital out.) Some headphone users prefer to use a headphone amp between their source and headphones.
 
The I think the Mojo will not power from the USB input. I have the Meridian Explorer and it requires no other power than the USB port it runs on. Therefor I understand the charging method you mean. However I believe the Mojo needs to be charged on the USB power port. I think I read it needs a 1A (amp) charging source. A single USB port is only 0.5A.
 
I like you, think I will be using it mostly for at home sat next to my PC. (Music and gaming nirvana.) However I do intend on using the Mojo with my laptop away from my PC. Also I am thinking about buying the Sony NWZ-A15 to run with the Mojo. It has unrivalled battery life for a DAP, and I don't need an optimal sounding DAP with a Mojo. Thus I see myself drifting for countless hours in a trance somewhere comfortable; Sony DAP + Mojo + Grado.
 
I really am just going to have to bite the bullet and choose some higher end Grados to go with it. The 225e I have are OK, but for ages I have been deliberating on an upgrade. I have sneaky feeling the GH-1 is the headphone I would like best. For now though I am intent on sometime soon I hope, putting wood cups on my 225e.
 
NB. Yes the Mojo will be perfectly balanced with your Grado headphones low impedance. Ref you question on the Mojo page.
 
@Krutsch I am not quite sure what you mean. You are correct Chord do no use ASIC DAC chips which I said. However the programmable FPGA they use is not a filter as far as I understand. Anyway if you're correct and it is, fair play and I accept. However in the marketing for Chord products it clearly says they use their own coded FPGA and not off the shelf DAC chips.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 2:30 AM Post #28,866 of 47,843

NoxNoctum

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I mentioned any of the Prestige Series e-series because they are fine headphones. Whereas I mentioned the SR325is (being previous model version) because some folk like them specifically for metal and rock. The PS and RS, I believe are equally at home with rock. However I have never heard them. joseph69 mentioned the GH-1 which is a higher end Grado too. I think you're really only choice is which Grado would you like, or how much money do you budget. People recommend get a SR60e or SR80e and see if you like Grado sound first, then buy more expensive later. However I think we can safely skip that test phase if we want. The only reason not to like Grado is if you want a heavy bass for dance/house music. Even then you could opt for the bass heavier PS500/e.

Ok well let me rephrase slightly -- what are the most energetic/aggressive Grados out there regardless of price? From my (limited) research I am seeing a lot of people putting the SR325is above several other pairs in terms of treble energy.
 
Hopefully I will be able to try out some of these to compare. It seems the SR325is are however, out of production, like you said. Is the SR325e very similar? They seem to run a fair bit cheaper which makes me think they arent't?
 
Thanks for your help guys.
 
Keep in mind this is ONLY for punk basically so I only care how it affects that. I won't be listening to Chopin over them :wink: (unless that turns out to sound awesome as well ofc... IME though a high energy rock sound is somewhat at odds with other genres sometimes when it comes to sounding good)
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 3:30 AM Post #28,867 of 47,843

GreenBow

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Your expert on that is @kayandjohn so look for his signature which has comparisons of the Grado models.
 
However I have asked myself the difference between the 225e which I have, and the 325e. (kayandjohn was kind enough to offer opinion then too.) The general impression is the 325e has a little extra treble energy compared to the 225e. I can tell you that the 225e rip into rock music with gusto, but thats the way with practically all Grado. I like stuff like Hawkwind, Rush, Yes, and Led Zep.
 
If you take the example of Brainstorm by Hawkwind, it's a bit punky, a rocky and quite heavy. It's a good example and a bad example. Good because it shows that Grado are at home with it. Bad because the album was recorded much of it in one take, in a barn with mattresses on the walls. (Takes a few full listens to get right into it. First track on Doremi Fasol Latido album. If you listen to Brainstorm on youtube, let it run on. Play the whole of the next track Space is Deep, and the next track too, haha. A favourite album to me.)
 
I speculate that some prefer the 325is because it has more bite. @lehoang15tuoi is a metal head and 325is expert and can tell you better.
 
What I was saying though is that you're OK with Grado for everything. If you want specifically heavy bass you buy PS500/e, or Beats et al headphones. I have one eye on the 325e for the reason of a bit more treble energy myself. They have a bit more bass than the 225e by all accounts too. Having said this I used to own the 125i and it was a dreamboat scenario perfect rock headphone. You really can't go wrong.
 
If you do buy Grado 225 or above, read this thread. http://www.head-fi.org/t/754373/grado-l-cushion-comfort-for-sr225-ps500#post_11345196 Just a hint page so you get their comfort right. 
 
What Hi-Fi recently did a round-up test of the 325e. (They rate the 325e as the best on ear headphone until you spend all the way up to the £430 Shure 1540.) They summed the 325e up by saying, "If you're serious about sound quality, and they fit your budget, what are you waiting for". One of the music examples they used with the 325e test was Led Zep - Kashmir.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 8:55 AM Post #28,868 of 47,843

ruthieandjohn

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  Your expert on that is @kayandjohn so look for his signature which has comparisons of the Grado models.
 
However I have asked myself the difference between the 225e which I have, and the 325e. The general impression is the 325e has a little extra treble energy. I can tell you that the 225e rip into rock music with gusto, but that the way with practically all Grado. I like stuff like Hawkwind, Rush, Yes, and Led Zep.
 

I found that the SR325i (that is, the gold 50 Year Anniversary edition of the SR325) is the brightest Grado, brighter than the SR325 (original), the SR325is (which came after, and might have been a toned-down response to the brightness of the SR325i), and the SR325e (which like all e-series Grados, tones down the treble and increases the bass... in fact my less-than-bright SR325e sounds EXACTLY (to me) like my SR225i, with the i being the series before Grado toned down the treble and increased the bass).  More on that in the thread in my signature "4D Comparison of 13 Grados."  
 
Here is a link to some of my comparison of my four SR325 Grados.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 10:54 AM Post #28,869 of 47,843

bpcans

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@equedadoii
 it's because the Aune X1s has an analogue input that I mentioned specifically that the Mojo has none. You are correct that the mojo will cover your requirements; laptop>DAC>headphones.

The Aune X1s will also function as a traditional headphone amp. Meaning it will amplify from a device with a headphone or line out. (Eg like the headphone out from a laptop, or from a portable player that doesn't have a digital out.) Some headphone users prefer to use a headphone amp between their source and headphones.

The I think the Mojo will not power from the USB input. I have the Meridian Explorer and it requires no other power than the USB port it runs on. Therefor I understand the charging method you mean. However I believe the Mojo needs to be charged on the USB power port. I think I read it needs a 1A (amp) charging source. A single USB port is only 0.5A.

I like you, think I will be using it mostly for at home sat next to my PC. (Music and gaming nirvana.) However I do intend on using the Mojo with my laptop away from my PC. Also I am thinking about buying the Sony NWZ-A15 to run with the Mojo. It has unrivalled battery life for a DAP, and I don't need an optimal sounding DAP with a Mojo. Thus I see myself drifting for countless hours in a trance somewhere comfortable; Sony DAP + Mojo + Grado.

I really am just going to have to bite the bullet and choose some higher end Grados to go with it. The 225e I have are OK, but for ages I have been deliberating on an upgrade. I have sneaky feeling the GH-1 is the headphone I would like best. For now though I am intent on sometime soon I hope, putting wood cups on my 225e.

NB. Yes the Mojo will be perfectly balanced with your Grado headphones low impedance. Ref you question on the Mojo page.

@Krutsch
 I am not quite sure what you mean. You are correct Chord do no use ASIC DAC chips which I said. However the programmable FPGA they use is not a filter as far as I understand. Anyway if you're correct and it is, fair play and I accept. However in the marketing for Chord products it clearly says they use their own coded FPGA and not off the shelf DAC chips.
Greenbow, I'm kinda at a crossroads with upgrading my DAC. I loved the way the Chord Hugo sounded when I demoed it at AudioPerfection here in Richfield, MN., but the price of good UBS cables held me back. I've tried DAC's costing almost $2K and didn't hear much of an improvement over my Peachtree DAC•ITx until I tried the Chord.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 11:14 AM Post #28,870 of 47,843

GreenBow

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My Mojo has been delivered as yet unopened, and I am still reading up about cables and stuff. I am googling what OTG USB means etc.
 
I am not sure you really need expensive cables. There is huge and almost aggressive debate about whether expensive USB cables make a difference. I have a good so called expensive USB cable on my Meridian Explorer. I can't really hear if there is improvement over a £1 cable. Maybe my ME and 225e are not good enough to make a clear difference with an audio USB cable.
 
Sometimes I think there is improvement. However A-B testing is not straight-forward. If the poor cable causes faults or jitter it is not going to be regular. Secondly, listener fatigue means listening is not even. Say I audition the expensive cable first, then listen to the same song with the cheaper cable second. I am already effectively a little bored by the track. Third and fourth listens can be exhausting.
 
I say take advice from people whose reputation is on the line. http://www.whathifi.com/chord/mojo/review A large slice of the Hugo for a fraction of the price is eye-watering. Also there is the massively popular Mojo thread, where people are adding their impressions. http://www.head-fi.org/t/784602/chord-mojo-the-official-thread-read-the-first-post-for-updated-info It's a new product so there aren't zillions of pro-reviews online yet.
 
I understand where you are coming from with the Hugo impression though. I have not heard it but when I read the science, I believe what I read about how it sounds. (NB. I simply can not understand why anyone would put a headphone amp on the output of a Hugo.)
 
Best of luck and thanks for writing. Anyway back to Grado stuff.
 
Btw I read Jude Head-Fi founder uses the Hugo as reference DAC-headphone socket.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 11:43 AM Post #28,871 of 47,843

bpcans

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GreenBow, if there's anybody living who could have access to the best audio equipment it would be Jude. I personally take his recommendations as an excellent source for information and believability.
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 12:30 PM Post #28,872 of 47,843

Arty McGhee

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Greenbow, I'm kinda at a crossroads with upgrading my DAC. I loved the way the Chord Hugo sounded when I demoed it at AudioPerfection here in Richfield, MN., but the price of good UBS cables held me back. I've tried DAC's costing almost $2K and didn't hear much of an improvement over my Peachtree DAC•ITx until I tried the Chord.

 
this is a recent take on the digital cable thing, it involves a network cable not a usb but i think the science applies
 
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/07/even-vegas-strangers-agree-340-audiophile-cables-make-no-difference/
 
Nov 6, 2015 at 3:16 PM Post #28,873 of 47,843

ruthieandjohn

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this is a recent take on the digital cable thing, it involves a network cable not a usb but i think the science applies
 
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/07/even-vegas-strangers-agree-340-audiophile-cables-make-no-difference/

This is a WONDERFUL article!
 
  • They use MY favorite highest-scoring Grado headphones for the test, the Grado RS2e;
  • I actually helped run a conference in 1988, 28 years ago, where we too had The Amazing Randi as our speaker - one of the props he required in our case was a small vial of blood (!)
  • The tests that they did to see if expensive digital cables produced a sound distinguishable from that of cheap digital cables were scientfically very good, in my opinion.
 
I just wish we could engage such good statistical testing to examine many other issues in high-quality audio than just the effect of digital cables.  See the graphic below.  The Amazing Randi's talk included "Chimera" in its title and is where I got the idea for the word in my post that had this image.  Maybe start Sound Science Rent Randi foundation?
 

 
Nov 6, 2015 at 5:00 PM Post #28,874 of 47,843

bpcans

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Nov 6, 2015 at 5:33 PM Post #28,875 of 47,843

ruthieandjohn

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The GH1, The Bushmills X, The RS1i, & Their Sound
 
(a.k.a. The Cook, The Thief, The Wife, and Her Lover)
 
At long last, I performed one of my three-way comparative listening tests on three of my newest Grados...
 
  1. The limited-edition GH1 (first of a new series of limited-edition headphones called the "Heritage Edition, with 1000 made from a maple tree that died on the Grado property);
  2. The limited-edition Bushmills X, which are semi-closed headphones of about three years ago made from the wood of Irish Bushmills whiskey);
  3. The RS1i, made of mahogany wood cups and that served as Grado's flagship headphone until the entry of the two over-ear models of the PS1000 and GS1000.
 
All of these headphones are on-ear.  In all cases, they were driven with the Joseph Grado Signature Products HPA-1 amplifier.  I have described the test method here, but in short:
 
  1. I identify 10 acoustic features (e.g., transparency, sound stage,...) and compare each of the three headphones on each of these features, generating a rank order for each of the three on that feature (1st place, or 3 points; 2nd place or 2, 3rd place or 1, ties are permitted and scored equally such that the total score for each 3-way comparison is 6... any row of the table below will further illuminate this)
  2. I use specific snippets of four test songs, as given in the link referenced above, to make these comparisons;
  3. I display the results in a color-coded table, where blue is "1st place," red "2nd place," and gold "3rd place."
  4. Just for fun (not meaningful), I also total the points describing rank order for the 10 tests to generate a total score for each headphone.
 
I try to declare a tie for any case where I do not hear a clear difference that I think (no way to prove this) I could reliably also hear in a blind test.  When I total these, I would believe that score totals that differ by 3 or more are meaningful.
 
Here is the resulting table.
 

 
 
In short, the Bushmills X had the most transparency; the GH-1 was best at bass response, and the RS1i was the most balanced in performance across the 10 features.
 
I will eventually use these results and come further comparisons (e.g., my HF-1s, my three older SR325s that I got since comparing the SR325e) to add to my master comparison of all of my (20) Grado models.
 

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