Grado SR325is Impressions: Not Sure I'll Keep Em' :\
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I've owned these Grado SR325is for about a week and let them burn in for 45hours. Being a fairly new member of the high-fi community my first purchase was MTPCs around a year ago. That paired with my iBasso T3 amp is the only setup I have had experienced until this purchase. My impressions will be compared and contrasted to sound I have grown accustomed to with the MTPCs(My Standard) listening to Metal music.
 
Pros
  1. Music sounds less compressed, more natural, and more organized.
  2. Quick drivers captures the speed of metal perfectly and puts the MTPC's slow drivers to shame.
  3. Mids are godly and really make the guitar distortion and tones shine. The MTPCs do well in this department as well.
  4. Clarity and Detail are amazing. I am able to focus on multiple complex patterns(odd time signatures, guitar sweeps and arpeggios, ect) much more coherently.
  5. Soundstage is an immense improvement. The Vocals and Instruments conflict much less and vocals especially have become much more distinguishable(definite plus for incomprehensible vocalists).
  6. The highs soar!
 
Cons
  1. Punchy, but extremely lacking bass. This makes the headphone sound extremely top heavy and a little thin to me. I wasn't expecting anything much from a open aired headphone anyway. My Cowon PMP and amp has helped somewhat with this problem.
  2. (MAIN GRIPE) Unbalanced sound. Cymbals sound distant and echoey and drums overall are too quiet. I find I have to strain too much on the drums individually to notice the fills and cymbal work. 
  3. Exposes music to show glaring production faults. Music I never had a problem with, no longer sounds good to me :frowning2:
  4. Somewhat uncomfortable after extended periods of use.
 
I'm thinking of selling these and sticking to IEMs, because I've had the most success with them. I'm hoping I can find a pair that will take the sound of my Coppers and combine that with the speed, detail and clarity of a Grado phone.
 
Please help me find me a replacement IEM(if I end up selling the 325is) HERE
 
 
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yd2zhang

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I find EQing them helps (put mine on the default classical setting). Sure theres almost no bass impact, but I find the quality of the bass to be very clear and precise, and I like that. 
And completely agree on exposing bad quality music, although I upgraded my entire collection to flac after I got them and never looked back. (although my ssd is now full)
 
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I'm not intrested in FLAC because I only have 64gigs to work with. I stay strictly at 320 kbps. I also don't want to effect the EQ too much as I like a naturally good sounding headphone. How do you find the Toms and cymbals volume wise?
 
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yd2zhang

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they were a bit harsh at first, but my ears adjusted to them. I actually think they are quite forward.
 
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Are you using an amp? If so which amp? I heard tube amps pair well with Grados, but none of them are very portable.
 
Edit: I see you duped the system and got Grados into Canada. Nice
 
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Quote:
Cons
  1. Punchy, but extremely lacking bass. This makes the headphone sound extremely top heavy and a little thin to me. I wasn't expecting anything much from a open aired headphone anyway. My Cowon PMP and amp has helped somewhat with this problem.
  2. (MAIN GRIPE) Unbalanced sound. Cymbals sound distant and echoey and drums overall are too quiet. I find I have to strain too much on the drums individually to notice the fills and cymbal work. 
  3. Exposes music to show glaring production faults. Music I never had a problem with, no longer sounds good to me :frowning2:
  4. Somewhat uncomfortable after extended periods of use.
 

 

Sell the Grados and never look back. There are definitely better balanced headphones for the price.
 
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electropop

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Lacks bass? :frowning2:
 
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wind016

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yd2zhang

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Unamped, out of my samsung galaxy s
 
I got mine for an amazing deal, so I'll be keeping them for now.
 
Wow, got home and gave them another listen. I didnt EQ them this time and the symbals arent as forward as I thought they were. Dunno why I thought they were (maybe because of song choice, I picked everlong by foo fighters)? Drums are OK though, I can hear the drum fills just fine. Guitars are electrifying though.
 
Must've edited this post like 4 times already :p, they're not bad in space truckin' by deep purple. I'll get back after more listening
 
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Heya,
 
Are you interested in a headphone that is comfortable, has the forward mids/highs like a Grado sound, and is closed?
 
Very best,
 
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I don't really understand? A big emphasis of the 325 is bright treble, and I feel that the cymbals are prominently displayed in most every song that I've heard. The cymbals are always clear and up front for me, and are usually what I hear the most of.
 
And mine are always packing a good amount of bass, but I am using flat pads.
 
And about bringing out the flaws in your music, can you really fault a headphone for making mp3s sound bad? Garbage in garbage out.
 
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Grado are those headphones where you have to experiment with. They have so much potential in them, especially the SR325 Gold and the IS version. I don't know but SR325is are filled with a good amount of bass even when i switched to PS1000 bagel pads, the bass was just as good. I think you should really consider trying a Little Dot I+ Tube Amp, and 45hours of burn in won't do much to the SR325i. I think you need at least a few good months to actually let them shine.
 
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wind016

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Quote:
I don't really understand? A big emphasis of the 325 is bright treble, and I feel that the cymbals are prominently displayed in most every song that I've heard. The cymbals are always clear and up front for me, and are usually what I hear the most of.
 
And about bringing out the flaws in your music, can you really fault a headphone for making mp3s sound bad? Garbage in garbage out.

I agree with the first part. The cymbals were emphasized IMO.
 
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Quote:
Heya,
 
Are you interested in a headphone that is comfortable, has the forward mids/highs like a Grado sound, and is closed?
 
Very best,
 
That sound good to me. I really love what Grado does well on this phone. 
 
In regards to the drum and cymbal work, I am contrasting that to my experience to how the MTPCs preform. IMO those have the perfect balance, while everything sounds very disproportionate on the SR325is. The detail is there so I hear every snare brush, crash and china, but the presentation is not nearly as forward as the rest of the instruments. It feels almost like Grado is trying to create a false soundstage by making the drums too distant and echoey. Somtimes it feels like the cymbal work that is meant to be feint and quiet sounds annoying and almost buzzy instead of crisp and clear. Like Wind016 said above me, the bass suffers the same problem. Prominence of the Mids and Highs really take my attention off of the Double Bass(kick drums) and make my songs feel lacking. I miss that THUMP and impact that effects the rest of the music! The only reason why I feel like the bass is somewhat presented is because of the clarity and spaciousness of the phone.
 
I really would like to try a Little Dot 1+ but its not portable. I want to able to interchange between my Coppers and SR325is, but the SR325is don't pair as well with solid state amps(right?). My iBasso T3 will have to do for now.
 
 
 
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I'm driving my 325i off a locally made solid state and it does a respectable job most of the time.
 
Just road-testing a 320kbps MP3 of Metallica's 'And Justice for All..' on the lowly old gen. iShuffle.
 
Impact and clarity from Ulrich's drumming is solid, superior to the M50's on the go and the K601 with EQ driven off the amp to my ears.
 
Cymbals could be more prominent though.
 
Without the benefit of swapping between multiple DAC's and amplifiers, some recordings will simply always sound bright and nasty.
 
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