Jump to content
Computer Audiophile
dalethorn

Grado PS-1000e Audiophile Stereo Headphone review

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

I've always wanted one of these, but couldn't justify it until recently. I've been disappointed with more than a few expensive purchases in the past, but not this time. The PS-1000e is very different from the AKG K812, Beyer T1, and Sennheiser HD800 headphones that I've owned, physically and sonically, so rather than try to summarize here what's in the review (too complicated), I'll just point to the full review below.

 

Grado PS-1000e Audiophile Stereo Headphone review

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I've always wanted one of these, but couldn't justify it until recently. I've been disappointed with more than a few expensive purchases in the past, but not this time. The PS-1000e is very different from the AKG K812, Beyer T1, and Sennheiser HD800 headphones that I've owned, physically and sonically, so rather than try to summarize here what's in the review (too complicated), I'll just point to the full review below.

 

Grado PS-1000e Audiophile Stereo Headphone review

 

Hello,

I've watched your youtube review and I have a question how do you compare them to SR325e you've already own? What is missing on 325e comparing to PS1k and it is really worth to pay several times more for them? Asking because when you look at the distortion graphs, 325's are pretty good at that and only PS1k can be compared to them. GS1k has little more harmonics for instance. Interesting about your opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hello,

I've watched your youtube review and I have a question how do you compare them to SR325e you've already own? What is missing on 325e comparing to PS1k and it is really worth to pay several times more for them? Asking because when you look at the distortion graphs, 325's are pretty good at that and only PS1k can be compared to them. GS1k has little more harmonics for instance. Interesting about your opinion.

 

Funny you should ask - they are so different I wouldn't know where to begin. I ran a fairly accurate EQ curve on both (with much cross-compare testing with other headphones). Here are those, the 1000e and 325e:

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Ps1000e.jpg

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Sr325e.jpg

 

Remember these are EQ curves, which look like FR curves upside down. Anyway, whatever the signatures do as far as coloration is concerned, the big difference is the soundstage and the sense of effortlessness on the part of the 1000e. It's pretty dramatic. But making recommendations for either, especially the expensive 1000e, is difficult due to known reactions that people have expressed that conflict with each other.

 

The rule for me as always is, enjoy the sound as-is, re-tune or 'mod' the headphone if you will, but remember it's a Grado. And in the case of the 1000e, a big hunk of highly polished metal with internal wood parts - quite a collector item and unique sonic experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Funny you should ask - they are so different I wouldn't know where to begin. I ran a fairly accurate EQ curve on both (with much cross-compare testing with other headphones). Here are those, the 1000e and 325e:

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Ps1000e.jpg

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Sr325e.jpg

 

Remember these are EQ curves, which look like FR curves upside down. Anyway, whatever the signatures do as far as coloration is concerned, the big difference is the soundstage and the sense of effortlessness on the part of the 1000e. It's pretty dramatic. But making recommendations for either, especially the expensive 1000e, is difficult due to known reactions that people have expressed that conflict with each other.

 

The rule for me as always is, enjoy the sound as-is, re-tune or 'mod' the headphone if you will, but remember it's a Grado. And in the case of the 1000e, a big hunk of highly polished metal with internal wood parts - quite a collector item and unique sonic experience.

 

Well, I am not talking about the price level, because at the PS1k level it is probably hard to go wrong, but on other side, sometimes significant less priced audio gear could perform at the level much, much higher. Soundstage I could imaging is better on PS1k since they have bigger drivers and cushions, making more space for the sound pressure around your ear in comparison to 325's. Putting the same cushions on 325's change its sound in the wrong way to my taste.

 

How to read your graphs btw? The green line is the corrected one and grey one is original or what? When I built the graph for frequency response here:

 

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=2151&scale=30

 

PS1k have slightly less treble, smoother response on the upper registers, but also slightly more bass in comparison to 325.

 

For harmonic distortions, PS1k are the best, better than 325's:

 

graphCompare.php?graphType=1&graphID[]=383&graphID[]=2151&scale=30

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, I am not talking about the price level, because at the PS1k level it is probably hard to go wrong, but on other side, sometimes significant less priced audio gear could perform at the level much, much higher. Soundstage I could imaging is better on PS1k since they have bigger drivers and cushions, making more space for the sound pressure around your ear in comparison to 325's. Putting the same cushions on 325's change its sound in the wrong way to my taste. How to read your graphs btw? The green line is the corrected one and grey one is original or what? When I built the graph for frequency response here: PS1k have slightly less treble, smoother response on the upper registers, but also slightly more bass in comparison to 325. For harmonic distortions, PS1k are the best, better than 325's:

 

The green line in my graph is the actual curve. The grey lines are not relevant. My 1000e has a very strong emphasis around 3 khz, as compared to many other headphones. You can see where I registered the 7 khz peak correctly. Also, where the Headroom graph shows an emphasis centered around 100 hz, mine is centered around ~180 hz. Again, where the Headroom graph shows the bass down 2 and 6 db at 30 hz, mine has a bit more than that.

 

But, the real differences I hear between the 325e and 1000e are not reflected in these graphs - if you first adjust each headphone's response to bring them closer together in signature, the superiority of the 1000e becomes very apparent in listening. Most testers will miss that when the freq. responses are very different, because it's extremely difficult or impossible to "hear through" that difference to subtle differences in tonal quality. It's like trying to judge subtle color differences in car paints while staring into the sun.

 

One of the problems with distortion measurements, and I saw this in the AKG K812, is when you have a resonance or other very significant response deviation from 'flat', it can carry the distortion with it, increasing the effect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

But, the real differences I hear between the 325e and 1000e are not reflected in these graphs - if you first adjust each headphone's response to bring them closer together in signature, the superiority of the 1000e becomes very apparent in listening. Most testers will miss that when the freq. responses are very different, because it's extremely difficult or impossible to "hear through" that difference to subtle differences in tonal quality. It's like trying to judge subtle color differences in car paints while staring into the sun.

 

Do you mean by that to compare these cans first you EQ them both to have the same frequency curve? If so, I think 325e will suffer with that, because they aren't design to cope with the same sonic signature as PS1000e. They have less bass than 1000e and smaller cushions. More important AFAIK they have also smaller drivers. Anyway, I like your idea, but just not sure if this is relevant.

 

One of the problems with distortion measurements, and I saw this in the AKG K812, is when you have a resonance or other very significant response deviation from 'flat', it can carry the distortion with it, increasing the effect.

 

Indeed, could be potentially a problem, but I think both models are not so flat, but rather quite U shaped like old BBC EQ model. For instance Beyers are more flat I guess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Do you mean by that to compare these cans first you EQ them both to have the same frequency curve? If so, I think 325e will suffer with that, because they aren't design to cope with the same sonic signature as PS1000e. They have less bass than 1000e and smaller cushions. More important AFAIK they have also smaller drivers. Anyway, I like your idea, but just not sure if this is relevant. Indeed, could be potentially a problem, but I think both models are not so flat, but rather quite U shaped like old BBC EQ model. For instance Beyers are more flat I guess.

 

The relevance is simple as stated - not to make them identical, and not to perform an extreme EQ, but to make minor adjustments so that a fair comparison can be made. BTW, my SR325e is nearly neutral, while my PS1000e is far from it - in fact the PS1000e has an extremely lean bass.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The relevance is simple as stated - not to make them identical, and not to perform an extreme EQ, but to make minor adjustments so that a fair comparison can be made. BTW, my SR325e is nearly neutral, while my PS1000e is far from it - in fact the PS1000e has an extremely lean bass.

 

Interesting. I thought that PS1k should have better bass than 325e. In general people saying that 325's are bright, to me they aren't, but with good amplification.

 

Is it possible to share your 325e settings, like what -/+dB for each particular frequency range? I will try that on my side.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Interesting. I thought that PS1k should have better bass than 325e. In general people saying that 325's are bright, to me they aren't, but with good amplification. Is it possible to share your 325e settings, like what -/+dB for each particular frequency range? I will try that on my side.

 

The Audioforge (for iOS devices) numerical settings won't work with any other equalizer, however, these visuals will help. Here's the key: Vertical divisions are 6 db, horizontal divisions are the common ones, except there are no dividers for 30, 300, 3000 hz - i.e. they skip from 2 to 4. The yellow-green line is the only relevant line. Here are the 1000e and 325e:

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Ps1000e_A.jpg

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Sr325e.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The Audioforge (for iOS devices) numerical settings won't work with any other equalizer, however, these visuals will help. Here's the key: Vertical divisions are 6 db, horizontal divisions are the common ones, except there are no dividers for 30, 300, 3000 hz - i.e. they skip from 2 to 4. The yellow-green line is the only relevant line. Here are the 1000e and 325e:

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Ps1000e_A.jpg

 

http://dalethorn.com/Photos/Audioforge/Grado_Sr325e.jpg

 

Thanks a lot. It seems PS1000e need more correction than 325e, which could be perceived as more coloring than 325e's. Anyway PS1000e is the state of the art for Grado I think and they have 50mm driver vs. 44mm on 325e's AFAIR. Besides the fact that Grado added to them UHPLC 8 conductor cable, slightly better than on 325e's.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Putting the same cushions on 325's change its sound in the wrong way to my taste.0amkRQ

 

Yes, indeed. That was also my feeling. If you do it, you'll get less bass impact and more distant sound. Probably because bigger drivers are more suitable to produce the same air pressure with bigger cushions like on GS1k/PS1k.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Superphonica
×