Joseph Grado Passes Away at 90 - Page 2 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #31 of 50 Old 02-10-2015, 04:22 PM
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I own a pair of his headphones. Wow, made in the U.S.A. and they sound great with my iPod.

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post #32 of 50 Old 02-10-2015, 05:46 PM
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I appreciate the grado headphone stuff..currently use the SR225.


RIP Joseph Grado
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post #33 of 50 Old 02-10-2015, 06:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post
Did the Grado company ever dabble in speakers?
Actually, they did dabble in speakers, but no products came out of that effort. To quote the Grado website, "Around the same time of the introduction of the headphones [1990], he [John Grado] built the Grado Towers: a twin set of six foot tall stack of 32 RS1 drivers (64 total) encompassed in a wooden body. Due to the immediate popularity of the headphones though, the Grado Towers remain unreleased to this day as there was no need to enter both the speaker and headphone space. The Towers are currently in Grado's Listening Room..."
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post #34 of 50 Old 02-10-2015, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post
Actually, they did dabble in speakers, but no products came out of that effort. To quote the Grado website, "Around the same time of the introduction of the headphones [1990], he [John Grado] built the Grado Towers: a twin set of six foot tall stack of 32 RS1 drivers (64 total) encompassed in a wooden body. Due to the immediate popularity of the headphones though, the Grado Towers remain unreleased to this day as there was no need to enter both the speaker and headphone space. The Towers are currently in Grado's Listening Room..."
I knew about the cartridges and tonearms. I did not know about the speakers.

You know you have succeeded in life if you have made the world a better place.

I was first introduced to his headphones about 1990 at a high end boutique stereo store. I had never heard of them. The sound stage and clarity was so much better than most of the more expensive ones. I thought the salesman was joking about the price. The friend I went with bought them on the spot. My friend still cherishes them to this day.

R.I.P. Joseph Grado

Working on the next one...
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post #35 of 50 Old 02-11-2015, 06:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post
Actually, they did dabble in speakers, but no products came out of that effort. To quote the Grado website, "Around the same time of the introduction of the headphones [1990], he [John Grado] built the Grado Towers: a twin set of six foot tall stack of 32 RS1 drivers (64 total) encompassed in a wooden body. Due to the immediate popularity of the headphones though, the Grado Towers remain unreleased to this day as there was no need to enter both the speaker and headphone space. The Towers are currently in Grado's Listening Room..."

Woah!!!! I would love to hear those!
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post #36 of 50 Old 02-11-2015, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Sibuna View Post
truly a pioneer, Ars had a great write up on Grado a while back, if people missed it
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2014/...lyn-townhouse/
Sibuna,
Thanks for sharing that link - a good read !

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post #37 of 50 Old 02-11-2015, 10:26 AM
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First set of really great cans I owned was the Grado 125's. I still have them and this makes me want to break them out again. Ear comfort is an issue for me. But, I just limit the listening time with them so no big deal.
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post #38 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 12:17 AM
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Thumbs up Grado Headphones: Great Sound, Unbeatable Value

I'd also like to add my RIP for Joseph Grado, as well as condolences to his family.

Have used the wonderful sounding, though modestly priced, Grado SR60 headphones for well over a decade.

3 months ago I gladly paid $99 on Amazon for Grado's SR80e headphones. Not surprised that the December 2014 issue of Consumer Reports noted that out of more than 150 models of headphones tested, the Grado SR80e was among only 6 headphone models that managed to achieve an excellent rating for sound quality. Even the $300 Bose Quiet Comfort 15 and the $350 Klipsch Image X11i headphone models only reached the level of being judged very good in sound quality. So the $100 retail priced SR80e is a tremendous bargain, even without a significant discount. Love to use the SR80es late at night to be able to enjoy top quality sound with movies on blu-ray, while my wife is sleeping.

I'll always be grateful to Joseph Grado for the tradition he started, that made prime cut quality sound available for hamburger kinds of prices.

Last edited by sarahb75; 02-12-2015 at 12:24 AM. Reason: Thought of my point about late night headphone use after I'd already submitted my post.
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post #39 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 10:32 AM
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post #40 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott wilkinson View Post


the inventor of the stereo moving-coil phono cartridge founded an audio-manufacturing company that's still in the us after 60 years.

On february 6, 2015, the audio world lost one of the true pioneers in the industry—joseph grado passed away at the age of 90. The founder of grado labs started his professional career as a watchmaker for tiffany & company. In the 1950s, he discovered hi-fi and asked none other than saul marantz to help improve the sound of his audio system. Marantz immediately recognized grado's gifted ear and introduced him to sherman fairchild, who hired grado to help his company's floundering hi-fi division.

But as soon as grado came up with a viable product, he struck out on his own. He founded grado labs in 1953, making phono cartridges on his kitchen table in brooklyn, ny. In fact, he was awarded a patent—one of over 48 altogether—for the first stereo moving-coil cartridge.


two drawings from grado's patent for a stereo moving-coil cartridge.


in 1955, grado moved his operation around the corner to the site of his father's grocery business, where it remains to this day—covered in graffiti in this shot, but going strong nonetheless.

the company focused exclusively on phono cartridges and tonearms until the late 1980s, when grado started developing high-end dynamic headphones, launching a whole new product category in the process. Joseph's nephew john grado became president and ceo of the company in 1990 and released its first headphones, the hp 1000/hp-1, shortly thereafter. Since then, grado headphones have been among the most highly regarded in the audiophile community.


the hp 1000/hp-1 was grado labs' first headphone. Interestingly, it had a polarity switch on each can. It didn't have what you'd call a flat frequency response, and joseph offered to do modifications himself even in retirement.

it's extremely rare for a company to start in the us and continue to manufacture its products in the same location for 60 years, but that's exactly what grado labs has done, thanks to the vision of joseph grado and his family's dedication to keeping that vision alive and thriving. He was a bright light in the audio world that will continue to shine on all who value high-quality audio.

Do you use grado headphones or cartridges? What is your experience with them? How are you remembering joseph grado in the wake of his passing?

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post #41 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post
Actually, they did dabble in speakers, but no products came out of that effort. To quote the Grado website, "Around the same time of the introduction of the headphones [1990], he [John Grado] built the Grado Towers: a twin set of six foot tall stack of 32 RS1 drivers (64 total) encompassed in a wooden body. Due to the immediate popularity of the headphones though, the Grado Towers remain unreleased to this day as there was no need to enter both the speaker and headphone space. The Towers are currently in Grado's Listening Room..."
I actually saw a write up on those speakers decades ago, in one of the audio mags of the time. As you correctly stated, he never put them into production. But IMO the inspired a lot of similar designs during that time. The legendary AR9's and Amrita towers were similar in approach. And I owned both. I still have the Amrita towers. And they are as awesome as ever. But I traded the AR9s decades ago for a new flavor of the month. And have regretted it ever since. I think the best thing for me to do to honor Joe Grado's memory & contribution is to buy a pair of his Headphones. To mate with my many Grado cartridges and signature tonearm. Which I will do within the next 2 weeks.
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post #42 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by barrelbelly View Post
I actually saw a write up on those speakers decades ago, in one of the audio mags of the time. As you correctly stated, he never put them into production. But IMO the inspired a lot of similar designs during that time. The legendary AR9's and Amrita towers were similar in approach. And I owned both. I still have the Amrita towers. And they are as awesome as ever. But I traded the AR9s decades ago for a new flavor of the month. And have regretted it ever since. I think the best thing for me to do to honor Joe Grado's memory & contribution is to buy a pair of his Headphones. To mate with my many Grado cartridges and signature tonearm. Which I will do within the next 2 weeks.
Which model are you thinking about? I remember hearing the RS-1's years ago and loving them more than the SR 80's but when I factored in price it was a no-brainer. Love the look of those wooden cans though....
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post #43 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 07:44 PM
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Which model are you thinking about? I remember hearing the RS-1's years ago and loving them more than the SR 80's but when I factored in price it was a no-brainer. Love the look of those wooden cans though....
It will either be Grado Reference Series RS1e, or Grado Professional Series PS500e. I'm leaning more toward the Professional Series. But I wish there was a place in Boston where I could compare them side by side.
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post #44 of 50 Old 02-12-2015, 08:50 PM
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Well a big RIP to him! I had a chance to speak with him at a tech convention before......I feel privileged ^_^


I hope I can live that long in good health.
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post #45 of 50 Old 02-13-2015, 12:24 PM
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I've had my current turntable since 1992, and it's never had anything other than a Grado cartridge on it. I enjoy the sound I get. I have a pair of SR-60 headphones which doesn't get much use these days, mainly because the portable devices I bought them for don't.

I was sad to hear of his passing, and pray the best for his family.

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post #46 of 50 Old 02-13-2015, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by barrelbelly View Post
It will either be Grado Reference Series RS1e, or Grado Professional Series PS500e. I'm leaning more toward the Professional Series. But I wish there was a place in Boston where I could compare them side by side.
I've never heard anything from the professional series, I'd be curious too they compare.
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post #47 of 50 Old 02-15-2015, 05:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post
Actually, they did dabble in speakers, but no products came out of that effort. To quote the Grado website, "Around the same time of the introduction of the headphones [1990], he [John Grado] built the Grado Towers: a twin set of six foot tall stack of 32 RS1 drivers (64 total) encompassed in a wooden body. Due to the immediate popularity of the headphones though, the Grado Towers remain unreleased to this day as there was no need to enter both the speaker and headphone space. The Towers are currently in Grado's Listening Room..."

Hi Scott. Hope all is well. I seem to remember seeing a pair of those speakers in Grado's room at a summer CES in Chicago in the 1990's. I think it was a static display. I do remember long ago talking to Joe over the phone when he was running Grado and I was a dealer. A nice man with lots of rich food for thought stories. The company is in good hands with John Grado and John Chen.
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post #48 of 50 Old 02-15-2015, 08:19 PM
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Havn't been on in a while an just read this. Sad to hear but 90 years old is a long life and he sure made something of himself. Thanks Mr. Grado for all you've done for the industry! May your legend live on.

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post #49 of 50 Old 02-19-2015, 04:48 PM
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I have a quick story about my first (and last) foray into high end headphones. It was 1992. Corey Greenberg had just reviewed the Melos SHA-1 headphone amp with his personal pair of Grado HP-1s. I got a huge kick out of reading this article (posted for posterity here), and was intrigued to hear what the hype was all about. As a kid in college, I could not afford the Grados, but I started saving for a pair...

Two years later, I purchased my first Grado headphones, the SR-325s. I thought the spectral balance on them was so incredible and natural (if a bit dark in the top octaves) that I returned them to the dealer instantly for a pair of HP-2s. Voila, perfectly balanced sound, and no dark character. I was 21 years old, and I knew then that my search for better headphones was over. These headphones were for life. I still have the HP-2s and, while the red lettering wore off years ago, and I'm on my third set of pads, nothing else about them has aged. I do have a pair of Sony MDR-CD900STs that I kick around for plane rides, but those and the HP-2s are the only sets of cans I own. I still 'listen in' on the competition every now and then (latest test drive was the Beyerdynamic T1), but I always come back to the Grados with a smile.

RIP, Joseph Grado.

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post #50 of 50 Old 02-28-2015, 08:38 AM
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