Grado GS1000e Review – Headphones for Audiophiles

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Grado. It’s a family name. And just like all families, the Grado line of products is as unique as can be. So therefore, I’m super excited to share my thoughts with you today of the beautiful Grado GS1000e. So without further ado, here it is: the Grado GS1000e Review.

Grado GS1000e Review

In the Box – Grado GS1000e Review

-Grado GS1000e headphones

-¼’’ to ⅛’’ adapter

-extension cable

-documentation

Specifications – Grado GS1000e Review

-Transducer: dynamic

-Style: open-back

-Frequency Response: 8 Hz- 35 kHz

-SPL 1mW: 99.8 dB

-Impedance: 32 ohms

-Driver matched dB: .05 dB

Design – Grado GS1000e Review

Headband

The Grado GS1000e headphone sports a vintage look like so many of the other Grado models. For example, it has a leather coated headband. And again, like the other Grado models, there isn’t much padding on it. However, it is light and flexible. It is built well and connects to the earcups via metal sliding size adjusters. Additionally, its stitching adds a personal touch to the high-class, antique aesthetic.

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Earcups

The earcups of the Grade GS1000e headphones are large. They are made of mahogany and have a light metal grill to protect the drivers. Although they feel heavy in ones hands (especially compared to other, smaller Grado models), the support from the headband makes them feel light on the head.

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Earpads

All of Grado’s earpads have the same general features. They are made of firm foam and do not have any coating. Additionally, they are light and airy, which I’m sure contributes to their unique sound signatures.The Grade GS1000e comes with an over-ear style earpad. It is pretty comfortable, although sometimes I found myself feeling itchy right were the earpad touched my hair.

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Cable

The cable of the Grado GS1000e is pretty bulky for my taste. However, it is a good length (with the added extender in case you need more length), and seems durable. The twists up by the earcups seemed a little concerning, but they feel firmly in place and that helped to reassure me.

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Sound – Grado GS1000e Review

Low Frequencies

The low frequencies of the Grado GS1000e are modest, yet balanced. They work well with music that wants more clarity down there like jazz, folk, bluegrass, and soul. One example where it worked well was when I was listening to the song When It Was Wrong, by the California Honeydrops. In the song, the kick drum was there, but hung in the background providing a foundation. However it was subdued. It was not overpowering, and thus I could focus on the melodic bass line and the fun horns, guitars, and vocals.

Middle Frequencies

The low-mids of the Grado GS1000e are elevated. As a result, it is often, in the genres I mentioned above, that the bass guitar takes up a bit more room than it normally would. This was evident in Miles Davis’s song Bitches Brew. The bass felt a little resonant in the low mids, while the horns and keys made plenty of space in the high mids (and the highs). One moment that really jazzed me up (no pun intended) was when I could hear the low leslie speaker of the organ really work when the notes dropped low. In that scenario, the headphones really contributed to the energy and emotional impact of that part– a unique and happy surprise!

High Frequencies

The beautiful high frequencies of the Grado GS1000e have wonderfully complex harmonics and color to go along with it. I loved listening to the song Sweet Potato Pie (featuring James Taylor) by Ray Charles. In it, the cymbals had such a cool character that I’d never heard them with and revealed details I wouldn’t have heard otherwise. Additionally, those complex high frequencies affected the breathiness and air of the horns in the song. As a result, they were a bit more present in their transients, which added a lot of energy to their parts.

Soundstage

The soundstage is wonderful with lots of spaciousness and depth in the Grado GS1000e. It didn’t feel remarkably tall (perhaps because of the modest bass response). However, it did feel remarkably deep and wide. For example, listening to the song The Donor Blues by Shakey Graves felt like I was in the room with him, like he was sitting right there out in front of me. Likewise, the next song that album (Shake Graves and the Horse We Rode On), called Doe, Jane, demonstrated the width of the headphones. The wide guitars and the small vocal hums and sounds were super wide and left lots of great space for the lead vocal.

Overview – Grado GS1000e Review

In conclusion, the Grado GS1000e have a very unique sound with a special color and character. If you’re into a colorful sound with a beautiful high end,  you’ll really love these cans. They won’t be right for you if you need a big low end or if you need a very flat midrange like you’d need for classical music.

The Grado GS1000e is available for the best price here:

Grado GS1000e at Audio46

 

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