I hate not being able to make a decision... (GS1k vs. HD650)
Nov 1, 2008 at 4:19 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 27

Fryguy8

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Upgrading from SR225s, looking at either HD650s or GS1000s. I flat out can't make a decision. Been paralyzed with indecision for a week now.

-Main reason for considering the HD650s is that I'm looking to tone down my Grados a LITTLE bit, want to be able to easily go balanced without losing the headphones in the future for a week+, and I plan on beefing up the rest of my signal path, something that the HD650s will appreciate and grow with.

-Main reason for not just getting them is I'm a bit worried about them being TOO toned down from the Grados. I tend to passively listen to music a lot, at lower volume levels, and I'm worried about losing some of the "emotion" of music.


-Main reason for considering the GS1000s is that they are Grados, I like Grados, and the GS1000s are supposed to be already a bit toned down from the lower models. They seem to have a lot of the properties I'm looking for (notably excelling at lower volume levels while passively listening).

-Main reason for not getting the Grados is that if I get the Grados, I probably won't go balanced in the future, and won't beef up the rest of my signal path as much. I'm also in the situation that if HD650s are 90-95% of what a GS1000 was in terms of generic SQ, and I can well exceed the GS1000s with a great signal path. I'd rather get the HD650s and start upgrading the signal path right away. If it doesn't seem obvious, I'm a little apprehensive about spending $800+ on GS1000s when i can spend 250-300 on HD650s and probably get similar performance. I don't want money to be the deciding factor though, I want performance to be the decider (I can certainly afford $800+ on headphones).

Current signal path is just an upgraded zhaolu 2.5c. Obviously this is going to get upgraded, and if I didn't have a physical need to upgrade the Grados, I would probably be doing that (cord broke on SR225s).

Musical tastes are all over the place, but heavy in electronic, classic/progressive rock, and ambient stuff. Touch into a ton of other things like Rap and Classical and Jazz too.

The main thing wrong with the Grado SR225s I have now, besides the obvious upgrade-itis, are the following:
1. Broken cord. Going to repair, but this is my excuse to upgrade
2. Lacking bass quantity/quality
3. Looking for more resolution
4. Better instrument separation and sound stage.
5. Tone down the highs a LITTLE bit.

These are going to be used 99% for music playback on a pc at home while I work/whatever. Vast majority of the listening is passive listening at lower volume levels, but I occasionally will sit down and do some dedicated listening.

Vaguely considering Ultrasone 2500s as well. Would prefer to stay maintstream though. Seems like not a lot of people use Ultrasones, and the way different sound of them has me worried that I wouldn't like them, and I'm not in a position to audition before I buy.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 4:51 PM Post #2 of 27

progo

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The GS1000 are the non-Gradoish Grados. If anything, you should need a good listen on those before making a buy. I heard the GS1000 very briefly but the sound is somewhat close to HD650. The assets, or any pros weren't noticed because the amp was bad and I listened less than minutes.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 8:47 PM Post #3 of 27

shleepy

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IMO, Grados are and have always been a bad value for the money, once we start talking about models that are higher-end than SR80.

I have not heard the GS1000, but you should really consider the price range... If you were to go with used headphones, especially, then the differences in price are huge. HD650's can be as low as $220, while GS1000's are never really below $800.

Personally, I love my HD650's. I don't think they're very Grado-like at all, but as progo says, GS1000's are not very Grado-like, themselves. I think that it will be a matter of taste, so I don't know if it'll really be worth the extra $600+ for the Grados.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 9:02 PM Post #4 of 27

Blackmore

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You guys are talking from out of your neck up here, sorry, but GS1000 ARE TOP OF THE GRADO LINE, period.
How can you upgrade from SR225 to HD650 if you love Grado sound sig, tell me please...
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 9:19 PM Post #5 of 27

blessingx

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This is a strange thread.

The GS1Ks don't sound like the HD650s out of any amp I've tried. I picked my old GS1Ks up used for $600. I didn't know we had famous poets and politicians as members. Etc.

Personally having owned both (and Ultrasone 2500) and no longer owning any, I suggest you get very specific about the matching equipment if you're considering the GS1K. It's insanely finicky with pairing partially because of a severely recessed midrange on most equipment. There are even reasonably inexpensive options (I've owned mentioned the WA6 with correct rectifier), but choose wisely. The Senns can get very dynamic and exciting with a great variety of equipment and the money you save could go for a very nice rig (balanced or not and unless climbing over the Extreme, MPX3, Zana Deux, etc. I wouldn't bother with balanced - double the parts decreases bang for buck.
wink.gif
) The right GS1K setup can sound amazing (as can the AD2K another possibly worth considering), but the HD650 is a much safer choice to match now and move around in gear later. I don't believe being into the Grado sound prevents you from loving Senns, you just need power behind them. Although I have a soft-spot for the 2500s holographic soundstage, I don't think they're in the class of the other two cans.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 9:26 PM Post #7 of 27

Kees

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You need a better source in the first place. The GS1000 won't be what you want it to be without better source/amp.
The same goes for HD650, but they leave you with more funds to improve source/amp.
From that perspective the HD650 would be the logical choice I think.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 9:33 PM Post #8 of 27

jenneth

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Quote:

I'm a little apprehensive about spending $800+ on GS1000s when i can spend 250-300 on HD650s and probably get similar performance.


-From what I heard, you might need to spend another $200~300 on an after-market cable for the HD650.

Quote:

Sources are overrated and for the pretentious.


-A good/clean source will make a difference, as to how big of a difference, that's certainly up for debate...
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 10:14 PM Post #10 of 27

Fryguy8

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Well, I went down to a local hifi store today, and besides auditioning some ridiculous speaker setups (a really nice shop). I got the chance to audition some RS-1s. 650s and GS1000s were not available.

The RS-1s were markedly better than the SR225s, but probably not $400+ better. I still noticed a lack of resolution, soundstage, and while the bass output of the RS-1 was more than the SR225, it was somewhat muddled and "heavy" to me.

I want more resolution, and it seems like the Grados try to make up for lack of resolution with increased brightness.

I dunno. Listening to higher end Grados is really making me reconsider. I'm thinking I might just get the HD650s and start picking up other components and have a complete system instead.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 10:36 PM Post #11 of 27

PuffyElvis

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Try to look at your decision this way, which do you want first? GS1000 or HD650? You can always add to your hp collection later on. For me, the HD650 is great for some kinds of music where the GS1000s just fall short and vice versa.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 10:44 PM Post #12 of 27

Fryguy8

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Quote:

Originally Posted by PuffyElvis /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Try to look at your decision this way, which do you want first? GS1000 or HD650? You can always add to your hp collection later on. For me, the HD650 is great for some kinds of music where the GS1000s just fall short and vice versa.


I've got a strong suspicion I will end up with both anyway. Might as well just get the HD650s now, since I can get a good deal on them, and wait around and see if balanced GS1000s pop up.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 10:47 PM Post #13 of 27

Uncle Erik

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Quote:

The main thing wrong with the Grado SR225s I have now, besides the obvious upgrade-itis, are the following:
1. Broken cord. Going to repair, but this is my excuse to upgrade
2. Lacking bass quantity/quality
3. Looking for more resolution
4. Better instrument separation and sound stage.
5. Tone down the highs a LITTLE bit.


Are you sure you really want the GS-1000 or HD-650? There are other options.

Going by the above, I think the Beyerdynamic DT880 might be more to your liking. It's more balanced overall, with better bass extension and resolution. The highs irritate some people, but a set of tubes usually mellows them a touch.

The other consideration is that you often need to spend a bit on an amp to get the best out of the HD-650.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 10:49 PM Post #14 of 27

paaj

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the HD650 is much more forgiving, and saves you about $500 for a better source or nice amp (used GS Solo at a little more?)
 

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