for Grado headphones
No Grado headphones models sound the same. They all have the unmistakable Grado sound, but they differ, and so the impact of my earpads on sound will depend of the model you have, as well as on your preferences. The pads I currently offer have been tested, by me, on my SR325e. With the original cushions I found the sound to be a little “thin” and, as most would agree, the majority of Grado models tend to favour the high frequencies. My intention was to balance the sound while preserving the recognizable Grado signature.
The three types of material combinations for the earpads and the interchangeable foam offer a range of options. In summary, and bearing in mind that the differences will be subtle for most people:
The hybrids preserve the original sound the most, while adding a touch of mid range and bass.
The full leather, probably due to reflections being encouraged in the space between the driver and the ear, are perhaps a little sharper.
The full merino will add the most mids and bass and add a touch of finesse, silkiness, to the high frequencies.
The foam also impacts on the sound: the more porous it is, the less impact on sound.
The Reviews page contains a small collection of the feedback from clients including, where I was made aware, the model they used the earpads on.
Design, Comfort, Durability & Luxury
My intention was to offer the most comfortable, durable and luxurious earpads in the smallest over-ear design, in both external and internal diameters, while preserving the Grado heritage design. The products are fully hand made in New Zealand from leather and merino, the most luxurious and skin friendly natural materials.
Leather is known to last a very long time with very minimal care.
Merino is the finest available non-scratchy wool and one of the most hard wearing natural fibers. It is exceptionally breathable, temperature regulating, hypoallergenic and soft. It is used for baby blankets, underwear, outdoor garments, high-end suits, even shoes.
For details on maintenance, please read the Good to know page.
The earpads are open, meaning that the user can change the inner padding to their desired level of softness.
Every pair of earpads will be delivered with two sets of foam inners:
Reticulated foam: the most breathable, on the hard side
Open-cell foam: soft, the most porous open-cell I could find
The headband wraps around the original Grado headband and it closes securely at both ends with magnets.
It offers plenty of comfort due to the 12mm very soft memory foam insert.
2 x Earpads.....US$ 115 + US$ 25 Shipping = US$ 140
1 x Headband.....US$ 60US + $ 25 Shipping = US$ 85
Set (2 x Earpads and 1 x Headband).....US$ 175 + US$ 25 Shipping = US$ 200
[Shipping is with DHL Express, about 5 days anywhere in the world]
You will have a month to try them out and ask any questions. Full refund on return will be provided, but you'll have to pay for the shipment back to New Zealand.
While I started this business with Grado headphones in mind, I do have other favorites as well. And as it turned out, they too could do with some upgrades.
One of them is the Sony MDR-SA5000, one of the fastest, most detailed headphones ever made. The top of the range in Sony's offer a few years ago, it is now old enough to show its weak spot, and - you've guessed it - it is the earpads.
Another one is the Panasonic RP-HD10, which can be had for about US$ 180. If there ever was an outstanding value-for-money piece of audio equipment, this is it. But, again, the earpads are heavily compromised.
And so I make earpads for both these headphones. Check the Other Projects!