Grado has finally made a step up by upgrading its SR80 headphones and it also did so by labeling its headphones as the SR80i. This headphone has plenty going on and in the end your extra $20 might be worth spending since it has some noteworthy features you can’t ignore.
Design & Features
The Grado Labs Prestige SR80i is designed with a false leather headband, radio operating-like ear cup and metallic struts that hold the device together. Its retro-appearance will still remind you of the original SR80 but at the same time it echoes a modern improvement from the previous model. Like its siblings, the SR80 is constructed with open-back headphones and the biggest difference that sets it apart from the others is its ear pads are made from pure foam. The foam covers the drivers instead of encircling them. Another noticeable improvement you’ll notice with the latest Grado headphone is its sound quality which is slightly better. And this is evidence with better base response.
You might be hesitant to own this if you’re very particular with every square inch detail of the product. Its build quality is so-so since it feels a bit rugged. You’ll also notice that after wearing it for quite some time, the ear cups have the annoying tendency to fall off from time to time. It would make you think the ear cups were only glued instead of being properly fitted to stay. But the good news that will put your worries aside is it comes with a one year warranty from the date you purchased it. Although you might kind of wonder what the word “warranty” means when the company will still charge you whenever something goes wrong with the product within its warranty period.
The headphones, as you all know too well, is produced and manufactured from Brooklyn, New York The product was able to clearly pick out instruments flowing through such as the guitars, bass and drums. It even picked out wind instruments that you wouldn’t normally hear really well in other headphones. Hearing the vocals is superb and the cymbals heard along with the bass were crystal clear. All in all, the audio flowing from within the headphones is evenly distributed. If you compare it to its older model, the SR80i is less airy and will get you hooked with its crystal clear audio.
As expected, the headphones deliver more rich bass power than its older sibling. But one thing you might be disappointed in would be a slightly weaker response in its treble sound. When listening through the headphones for a longer period of time, it becomes uncomfortable despite the new padding displayed with the product. It pays to buy your own spare pads just in case it falls out or you want to shift to a comfortable pair. Regardless of the switch that you make with newer or older pads, both sounded great on the SR80i.
If you’re looking to spend under $100 for a good pair of headphones that delivers good quality, then the SR80i is a perfect fit for you be listening your tracks in.