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Grado SR80 vs SR325I?

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by zemlin, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. zemlin

    zemlin Well-Known Member

    More than anything else, I'm interested in these just for listening to music.

    I have two pair of Grado SR80 cans. I love 'em. Actually one of them is SR60 with big ear pads, but I popped the ID buttons off years ago and can't tell which is which. They sound identical to me.

    What would be the main source? My iPod - a 5th gen 30 GB loaded with high-bit rate MP3 files which I have pulled from CDs myself.

    My Grados also see service when I'm doing restoration work - cleaning up vinyl tracks and such. Their detail is great for that kind of work - but I don't do a lot of that.

    So, I understand that MP3s from an iPod is not ideal source material, but that's the real world. I'd consider getting the 325s if the sound is noticeably better than the SR80s. Good enough that it's a no-brainer in an A/B test. Good enough that my kid could hear the difference (she's got decent ears, fwiw).

    What would I hope for in a "better" sounding Grado? A little less bright, and a bit stronger in the low end..

    Anyone have head-to-head experience with both of these cans? I'm really not interested in other options - $300 is the most I could consider spending and I really like the Grado sound.

    I know there are a lot of reviews out there, but I don't trust green sharpie-wielding "Audiophiles" - if you know what I mean. It seems a big price tag is all you need to impress a lot of the reviewers out there.

  2. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Hey -

    Just based on the other Grado subject the other day, I wound up buying the iGrados (which apparently use the same speaker as the SR60). Damn they sound nice. I wouldn't associate the word bright with them in any way. They do something simply magical in the 120-500 Hz range that I've never heard from any other transducer - ever.

    I think I'll be purchasing a few of the larger "real" Grados for the studio soon.

  3. zemlin

    zemlin Well-Known Member

    The SR80s aren't overly bright - I auditioned some Sony 7605s and THOSE things are bright! I can listen to the SR80s all day long. The bass in these things isn't overly strong, but it's extremely clean.

    As I mentioned, as far as I can tell the only difference between the SR60s and the SR80s is the ear pads - and those make a big difference. I tell folks not to consider the SR60s.

    It also takes a little tweaking of the headband when these are new, or they sit on your ears in a painful manner - once that's taken care of they are great.
  4. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Interesting. Thanks for the info.

    What did you do to the headband?

    FWIW, the iGrados also cause pain to the ears based on how they sit. I imagine after a week or so of using them, it won't be a problem.
  5. zemlin

    zemlin Well-Known Member

    basically just straighten it slightly just above the attachment point to the ear piece. They sit a bit like \ / that out of the box. They are closer to | | parallel when I'm done - it's just a slight bend, but without it the pivots on the ear pieces can't do their job - at least on my head.
  6. zemlin

    zemlin Well-Known Member

    BUMP - a few years have passed since this post, and I'm still asking myself the same question. Now it would be between my old SR-80s and the 325is cans.

    If the two were sitting side by side and you put on the SR80s when you intended to grab the SR325s, would you wonder what was wrong?
  7. zemlin

    zemlin Well-Known Member

    OK, so I started this post more than 4 years ago. I finally pulled the trigger on a pair of the 325is cans. Got them today and all I can say is OMG!!! Everything I like about the SR80s, but oh-so-much better. I'll have to get another pair to replace my other SR80s. Smoother, better bass, more balanced, more detailed (which I didn't think was possible), and I'm more immersed in the music. Goosbumps.

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