Headphones....Grado 325?*

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by GARY GRIFFITHS, Mar 20, 2017.


    GARY GRIFFITHS Member Thread Starter

    Hi. I would like to buy headphones to go with my fiio x5 111. I listen to a lot of metal of all sorts black, death classic etc. Should I get grado 325, focus listen or do you kind people know of something better for under £300?
  2. AnalogJ

    AnalogJ Forum Resident

    Salem, MA
    This is not going to be the best pair for metal and rock. There's not a lot of thwomp to those. You might want to look at a pair of Sennheiser or Beyerdynamic headphones in your price range.
    Kyhl likes this.
  3. Hofy

    Hofy Member

    I personally find Grado cans painful to wear. Like sticking ones head in a vise. Look for an around the ear headphone not an on the ear.
  4. Jack Flannery

    Jack Flannery Forum Resident

    Houston, TX
    I find them very comfortable. I got rid of HD600's because of comfort. Point is, heads are different and you need to try them for yourself. Grado' are not what I would call death metal cans.
  5. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Forum Resident

    Brooklyn New York
    I have the Grado SR325is and listen to a lot of classic rock/metal on vinyl. Very happy with them.

    GARY GRIFFITHS Member Thread Starter

    The other headphones they mention on head fi are meze 99. Anybody here used those?
  7. beercanchicken

    beercanchicken Legendary Stickman

    InnerFidelity has a video review of those.
  8. BIGGER Dave

    BIGGER Dave Forum Resident

    I have a pair of SR325, I believe they are the 'i' version. Love them. I don't listen to metal much, the hardest rock I listen to is Zeppelin. The Gardo's sound great playing Zeppelin. I also have a pair of the higher price PS500e and the SR325 sounds nearly as good as the PS500e. I recommend the SR325!
  9. Kyhl

    Kyhl formerly known

    I found them comfortable enough but I had to bend my Grados a bit to make them fit better. They were fine after that.

    I have an old pair of SR225s and Sennheiser HD600s and I would recommend the 600s before the Grados. If someone thinks the Senns are slightly warm, then the Grados are the opposite, slightly bright. They seem to be on opposite ends of the spectrum imo. For metal, I'd go HD600s but you might want an amp to liven them up.
    gregorya and Hofy like this.
  10. McGuy

    McGuy Forum Resident

    I'm going through this right now - Grado v Sennheiser. I listen to mainly rock, soul, jazz, nothing heavy. And I too have heard the Grados can be uncomfortable but I've also heard Grado has various grades of pads. I cannot decide. And way too many choices just within those two brands.
  11. mrdiscman

    mrdiscman Forum Resident

    I love mine. They are very "revealing."
  12. H8SLKC

    H8SLKC Forum Resident

    Boston, MA
    I posted this earlier, but at least on the Grado SR80s, maybe on most/all of their sets, it's easy to replace the horrible "bowl" pads with full cushions sold by Grado that make them very comfortable. I love the sound of the SR80s but didn't use them very much until I found the full coverage pads and now they are very comfortable for multi-hour listening sessions.
  13. I wouldn't want a Grado for black metal, death metal, and other forms of metal. For me, Grado is the wrong headphone for that sort of music.

    For metal I want a headphone that has good extended bass down to at least 50 Hz where the kick drums are, then a smooth midrange, then a treble that doesn't have peaks and a treble that tends to taper down a bit rather than being hyped. The recording techniques and intentional distortions in metal are already harsh enough. You don't want a treble that makes it even harsher, or a treble that is beamy or ringy in a way that aims some extra harshness right in your ears.

    Grados have a bass that starts rolling off at 100 Hz which means it won't have the punch and drive I want from kick drums and the bass guitar. The midrange has a big step up at around 2000 Hz which means vocals and guitar will be extra shouty in that range (yeowch). Treble is also hyped by a similar amount which means you'll be only all too aware of harshness due to distortions. The Grados can work well for some rock, but to me they're just the wrong headphone for metal.

    Headphones I like for that sort of metal are headphones like the Audeze LCD series (especially my old LCD-2 version) and the Massdrop/Fostex TH-X00. Both have a strong extended bass, but not a boosted bass like what Beats do. Both have a smooth midrange. Both have a treble that won't get annoying or harsh with metal. Unfortunately those options are all more than your budget and not very portable friendly.

    A more affordable option that would be portable friendly and work well with metal would be the Audio-Technica ATH M50x. And other headphones with a sound signature similar to the M50x.
    Kyhl likes this.
  14. gslasor

    gslasor Well-Known Member

    I think the 325is are a great pair for metal.
    Wally Swift likes this.
  15. SMc

    SMc Forum Resident

    Austin TX
    The bowl-type ear pads are here: Grado Headphone Replacement Cushion G

    The Grado midrange shout can be harsh but is better in my 225s than in my 80s. I find it useful for hearing film/tv dialogue during house quiet time. It also gives "I Zimbra" extra whomp compared to more accurate headphones.
  16. Dan DRC

    Dan DRC Forum Resident

    Southwest Missouri
    I am a Grado fan but for metal I think you will be disappointed in the 325. I would look at Beyer 770 or 880 or maybe something like the Audio-Technica ATH-M50
  17. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Forum Resident

    Brooklyn New York
    I must be weird. I think the the stock Grado cushions are very comfortable. I'm very pleased all around with this purchase which included the Grado extension cable.
  18. Dan DRC

    Dan DRC Forum Resident

    Southwest Missouri
    Yeah, everyone is different I guess. I have never had comfort issues with Grado either. It helps to hand wash the cushions in mild detergent and air dry. They will soften up a bit.
  19. Mike Novak

    Mike Novak Well-Known Member

    Montelimar, France
    Love my Grado sr325i but for jazz and classical music. For rock and hard-rock I much prefer my AKG or Sennheiser headphones, what's your source material, amp. ? The Grado can be harsh depend on material.
  20. gregorya

    gregorya Forum Resident

    Sound signature opinions aside, as others have suggested, it is important to adjust the headband on the Grado phones to suit your preferred clamping force. The instructions that come with their products state this, but it can make a significant difference to the overall comfort.

    Other pads of course can make a difference too.

    If you're considering the SR325, remember that the newer model is the SR325e.

    Good luck with whatever you ultimately select! :)
    McGuy likes this.

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