- Dec 28, 2009
The answer is fairly simple: Audio testing is archaic, inconsistent and incomplete. We use 1960 methodologies and then ask "why doesn't this work?"
Take frequency response measurements for an example. Most are measured at a single SPL. If you listen louder or softer, you will get a different response curve. Same goes with driver velocity. Lower the SPL the listening level, and the driver response time will change.
Why do Grados sound better than they test? Blame the tests not the phones - and then recognize that Grados likely excel at untested SPLs where many people actually listen.
In the age of big data, audio testing is back in the stone age.
Having listened to the lower-end grados a number of times (namely the sr80i, sr225i, and sr325is), they are exactly as bassless and weak on the low end as the measurements would indicate. They somehow still manage to sound good and fun (in a particular way) when used with certain genres of music, but they certainly aren't accurate, and the measurements I've seen seem to reflect that fairly well.