Photo by: Robert Williams
The Reference Series is the top-notch range of headphones from Grado, of which the RS2s are the second most expensive. In this category youre competing with the likes of Stax and the top Sennheiser, both of whom have electrostatic designs. The Grados however arent electrostatic, but open backed design. The fish, as befits the price, is very fine, with use of real wood - and they weigh very little. Consequently you can hardly feel them on your head, such is their apparent lightness. Despite this lightness they are by no means fragile, having a controlled and stable fit. Sound wise the Grados were superb. Midrange and treble detail was awesome, but their response was also smooth and highly sophisticated. There was a wonderful sense of airiness and transparency. Big orchestral pieces had both scale and presence, plus timbre richness, which is rarely found. These are a true high-fidelity product so dont expect synthetic or forced low bass response. Its only there when its on the recording, but if its low and powerful, the RS2s will play it with speed and depth. Highly recommended if your listening is mainly through cans, where the heavy cash outlay will be justified. A good (preferable the RA1) headphone amp will make them really sing, so its virtually a must do.
Wooden air chamber
UHPLC copper voice coil wire
HPLC copper connecting cord
What does the i stand for in the new RS2i from Grado? Improved, that's what! The RS2i is the little brother of the RS1i. The RS2i has an upgraded driver and the new 8 conductor cable design. The characteristics of the RS2i remain the same as its distinguished big brother, with the new species of hand crafted mahogany, but with a smaller wooden air chamber. Although a miniature version of the RS1i, the RS2i still maintains an overall sound that is pure Grado, warm harmonic color, full bodied vocals, excellent dynamics and ultra smooth top end. These truly are audiophiles dream.