|The Grado SR60i has a lot of history, too. While not quite as visible to pop culture as the Porta Pro, Audiophiles the world over have been digging these headphones since their introduction in 1994 --- and so have I. HeadRoom has been pitching the Grado SR60 as Headphonedom's best value for a long, long time, with thousands of happy audiophile customers as a result.
Looks like this horse race just got a lot closer ...
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="180" caption="The Grado SR60i has long been considered the best sounding sub-$100 headphone."][/caption]
It's not that the Grado SR60s have gotten worse with the introduction of the "i" series --- they haven't --- it's that the competition has just gotten a lot tougher with the new Sennheiser PX-II and HD2x8 series cans. None the less, the Grado SR60i remains a very worthy buy.
The Grado SR60i is a very simple headphone with rather retro styling. Some folks complain that Grado cans are somewhat uncomfortable; I've found that once you bend the headband a bit (it conveniently has a malleable metal strip inside the headband) to conform to the top of your head that they are no more uncomfortable than your average ear-pad headphone. Additional size adjustment is accomplished by sliding the earpiece posts up and down in the headband end pieces.
|[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="298" caption="Frequency response of the Grado SR60i."][/caption]The sound of the SR60i is lively and fun, while being fairly well balanced. Bass extension is only fair, but defined and tight; highs are clear and well extended; and the upper-mids are slightly congested sounding. These headphones are easy to drive and work very well from portable players. In fact, they have an unusual characteristic in that while they don't seem to get much better with a headphone amp, they tend to sound quite good no matter how poor the source. The SR60i is a somewhat better headphone than the PortaPro, but both the PX100-II and HD 238 best it. The Grado SR60i is slightly less expensive, however, and remains a good value for money. It's also possibly the most famous headphone in the world of high-end audio ... not because it delivers ultimate performance, but because in the past it's been very hard to find an audio product of any type that delivers this much performance per dollar spent. If you'd like to read more, I suggest the original Stereophile review of the Grado SR60i.Still a great headphone, and still a great recommendation after all these years.
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On to the Sennheiser HD 238
First page of this review is here