Review: Grado GH1 Headphones Are Big On Sound, Tradition
August 20, 2015 - accent chair
Good sound never goes out of style, and in a audio universe tradition is a uniquely strong credo.
In gripping with that thought, I’m now leaning back in an Eames Lounge Chair dialing in on a duplicate of a Citizen Kane of headphone-listening albums, The Dark Side Of The Moon Remastered.
I’m listening to this classic manuscript with Grado’s latest span of limited-edition cans, a initial model in their Heritage Series line. These Grado GH1 headphones may be code new, yet they are each bit classical Grado.
The maple wood-bodied GH1’s have a fresh look yet a same good sound, despite a opposite season of it. The association bills these limited-release headphones as their initial span done from a Brooklyn tree. They lay on a higher-end of Grado’s line during $650. They’re flattering awesome.
Big on Sound
These headphones sound stellar, pristine and simple, yet they aren’t suited for everybody.
Open-ear headphones adopt their possess code of lifestyle. The structure of a headphone leaks a ton of noise, that doesn’t make them ideal for spaces where peace is a essence of wit. You hear flattering most all that’s function around we due to a headphones’ pattern so these unequivocally aren’t a ones I’d move on a plane.
Fans of Grado’s sound are doubtful to be astounded by any of this, and this is clearly a headphone built for a brand’s devotees.
“The [GH1’s] are usually a opposite season of a Grado sound,” CEO John Grado told me. “You competence like vanilla ice cream, yet we like Ben and Jerry’s. we like Haagen Dazs. It’s still vanilla yet they’re usually a tiny different.”
The Grado GH1’s are anything yet vanilla.
What mount out about open-ear headphones are a generosity of sound that they bring. The song never unequivocally felt contained by a physique of the headphones given a open-ear inlet placed them in a context of a sourroundings we was in.
Grados generally browbeat on a mid-range and a GH1’s are no exception. The crazy chord progressions on DSotM’s “Any Colour You Like” were energetic as all ruin and I could feel a disproportion in my bones when I cranked a GH1’s to high volume.
The sound felt a tiny reduction encompassing when listening to some-more bass-reliant tracks, yet with these headphones there are always moments of brilliance. A few songs on a some-more complicated choice, Dr. Dre’s “Compton,” felt a tiny agree afterwards I’d like, yet a vocals always popped by with a vigorous intensity.
Big on Tradition
John Grado is a operative class-style Italian dude who appreciates laying out a good backstory.
“We’re an old-style Italian family that’s kind of large on tradition,” he prefaced as I asked him about what creates a GH1’s unique. From there he launched into a history of Grado Labs, Inc, a association housed in a building that his grandfather Joseph bought in 1918.
By a 1950s, Joseph was commencement to build and sell phono cartridges that were rarely reputable for their quality. In 1965, a 12-year-old John came to work in a emporium unconditional a floors of a factory.
From there, John Grado’s Brooklyn accent guided me by a introduction of their headphone line in 1989, the acoustic fortitude of wood-bodied headphones and the unique opportunities to experiment that Grado Labs is afforded in being a tiny family-owned business.
“Before we started creation a timber headphones, we woke adult in a center of a night and suspicion to myself, ‘Let’s try wood.’” he recalled. “That day, we came downstairs and we done a integrate housings out of wood. we listened, yet didn’t consider it was a right timber so, we know, we usually kept personification with it.”
Grado has now been creation high-end headphones with timber housings for scarcely twenty years. The GH1’s are not usually stability that tradition yet are display off a family roots a bit some-more as this model’s housing is forged from a tree from Sunset Park area in Brooklyn.
Hmm on Build
The initial thing you’ll notice when we take a GH1’s out of their no-frills wrapping is how freaking light they are. Seriously, a physique of a headphones unbelievably weighs usually about as most as a heavy-duty non-removable cord.
Nevertheless, we consider that people used to unequivocally plain build qualities on other $500+ headphones might be a tiny unhappy with a build of a GH1’s.
Grado launched their initial headphone line 25 years ago and have given done unequivocally few cosmetic changes, other than a couple evolutions in housing materials. The Brooklyn-made headphones are flattering solid, yet we still feel a tiny heedful throwing them in my trek yet a case.
The padded leather wipe is gentle and it doesn’t take all that long for a unbending ear pads to wear in, but other than a pleasing maple housings, we wasn’t unequivocally left feeling like we was putting on a span of $650 headphones until we indeed gave them a listen.
At $650, a GH1’s are definitely an investment, yet anyone with a span of Grado’s RS1’s or SR325’s will tell we that higher-end Grado headphones are unlike any other model on a market. They demeanour parsimonious even yet a build leaves a bit to be desired, yet tradition comes with the quirks.
Overall, I’d contend these headphones are instant-classics.