Grado Headphones Honolulu HI

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CineSystems
(808) 591-1155
615 Piikoi StreetSte. 1406
Honolulu, HI
Services
Acoustical Design, Audio / Video, Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Multi-Room Audio
Brands
All
Certifications
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- Richard Reese, CEDIA Certified Professional Designer, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II

Audiolab
(808) 595-8066
660 Ala Moana Blvd
Honolulu, HI
 
HiFi Hawaii
(808) 536-4434
1170 Nu''uanu Avenue
Honolulu, HI
Services
Home Audio, Design & Installation

Design Systems Ltd
(808) 455-6611
96-1382 Waihona Street #4
Pearl City, HI
Services
Home Audio, Design & Installation, Appointment Only

Audissey
(808) 591-2791
841 Pohukaina St Ste B
Honolulu, HI
 
SAMS CLUB
(808) 945-9841
750 Ke\''Eaumoku St.
Honolulu, HI
Recycling Services
Recycle Ink - No landfill guarantee

Best Buy
478 Alakawa St
Honolulu, HI
 
Blueprint Audio Visual, LLC
(808) 537-2546
PO Box 1209
Kaneohe, HI
Services
Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Multi-Room Audio, Wire and Cable / Power Management
Brands
AMX, Lutron, Marantz, Denon, Monster, Sonance, Russound, Artcoustic, KEF, Control4, Epos, Velodyne, Universal Remote Controls, Salamander Designs, Stewart.
Certifications
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- Eric Perkins, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Stanley Sato, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II

Home Automation Hawaii LLC
(808) 842-4646
94-417 Maikoiko StreetSte. 103
Waipahu, HI
Services
Audio / Video, Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Multi-Room Audio
Brands
Home Automation Home Theater House Audio & Video Lighting Control Structured Cable
Certifications
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- Salvador Ancheta Jr., CEDIA Certified Professional EST II

Sonson Sound Productions
(808) 683-6641
91-883 Puhikani
Honolulu, HI
 

RS-2 headphones

POSITIVE FEEDBACK ONLINE - ISSUE 3

grado labs

RS-2 headphones

as reviewed by Carlo Flores and John Brazier

   

one.jpg (6551 bytes)Audio is an expensive hobby, so it’s nice when the money invested yields a product with an attractive exterior. The Grado RS (Reference Series) 2 headphones are absolutely gorgeous. After opening the box and seeing their rounded mahogany chambers and soft leather headband, I sought out the closest mirror. I wear headphones in public, and these made me look like a cross between a mod kid and a 40s-era radio operator. They make women look like Princess Leia. A big thumbs up on aesthetics. 

Grados aren’t for everyone when it comes to comfort. The RS-2s have foam pads that are hard for the first week or two of use, but they do soften and conform to the ears. They fit comfortably, but pressure on the ears, even after shaping the headband, annoys after an hour—a good excuse for a coffee refill or smoke break. A few minutes are enough of a break for the next album. The over-the-ear design of the pads leaves much to be desired, but placement of the drivers is critical to the sound, and is a tradeoff I’m willing to make.

Grado’s house sound is all over these headphones—fat and bloomy, with something groovy in the bass lines. Grado’s Signature line of headphones corresponds to the sound of their Prestige cartridges, with the RS-2s echoing the Grado Platinum. Having a woodsy coloration isn’t necessarily negative. While these headphones are advertised as one of the best without amplification (only stepping aside for the megabuck RS-1s, according to Grado), their performance rises significantly with some milli-watts behind them. Separation increases, and there’s more slam with any of my amps when compared to my Sony portable or the AH! Njoe Tjoeb’s headphone jack. However, none of the amps I had on hand complemented the RS-2’s coloration and character, either leading to a bloated bass response or, when driven by tubes, an excessively thick midrange. The closest to success was a CHA-47 amp built by a moderator ( jmt@head-fi.org ) of the internet’s leading headphone message board ( www.head-fi.org ) and designed by Chu Moy and others at Headwize ( www.headwize.com ), though I always had the feeling that the headphones were holding something back. A follow-up with the RA-1 amp designed for the Grado Reference Series may be in order. I switched between the Arcam Alpha 9 and my vinyl rig for sources when indoors and the Sony dej-220 portable when on the go.

Give the RS-2s a sweet, simple Fender guitar (a la Jonathan Richman’s solo works) or a bass line from Sly and The Family Stone, and they sound refreshingly organic and rich, with believable decay and roundness. Push Wes Montgomery through them, and they convey a sense of nuance that leads to jaw-dropping involvement at times. These headphones, when they found the tune, force...

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