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Grado SR225e/SR225 Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.3.1
Reviewed Jun 08, 2016 at 04:05 pm
Grado SR225e/SR225 Picture
5.1
Mixed Usage
7.5
Neutral Sound
4.2
Commute/Travel
5.3
Sports/Fitness
4.7
Office
4.3
Wireless Gaming
6.1
Wired Gaming
1.5
Phone Call
Type On-ear
Enclosure Open-Back
Wireless No
Noise Cancelling No
Mic No
Transducer Dynamic

The Grado SR225e/SR225 are good headphones for neutral sound, but their overall performance isn't really versatile enough for everyday use. Their open-back design leaks a lot of noise, which is distracting to people around you, even at moderate volumes. They also fall off your head quickly if used while running. On the upside, they're lightweight and not too tight.

Our Verdict

5.1 Mixed Usage

The Grado 225e are designed for neutral sound. They're not versatile enough to be good everyday headphones.

Pros
  • Lightweight design.
  • Above-average and open sound quality.
Cons
  • Easily fall off your head.
  • Flimsy, plasticky build.
  • Poor noise isolation, by design.
7.5 Neutral Sound

The Grado 225e are good for neutral listening. They have a spacious soundstage and a good reproduction of instruments and vocals. They lack a little bass and may be slightly sharp at times, but they reproduce the detail in high-res audio with above-average accuracy.

4.2 Commute/Travel

The Grado SR225e aren't intended for commuting. Their open-back design doesn't block a lot of noise, so you still hear bus and plane engines while listening to music.

5.3 Sports/Fitness

The Grado SR225e aren't designed for sports. They're unstable, and the thick cable is bothersome. They're also a little uncomfortable.

4.7 Office

The Grado SR225e aren't intended for office use. They don't block office chatter, and they leak a lot, which will be audible even at lower volumes.

6.1 Wired Gaming
1.5 Phone Call
  • 5.1 Mixed Usage
  • 7.5 Neutral Sound
  • 4.2 Commute/Travel
  • 5.3 Sports/Fitness
  • 4.7 Office
  • 4.3 Wireless Gaming
  • 6.1 Wired Gaming
  • 1.5 Phone Call
  1. Updated Nov 21, 2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  2. Updated Nov 21, 2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  3. Updated Feb 16, 2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
  4. Updated Aug 10, 2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1.
  5. Updated Mar 01, 2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.
  6. Updated Jun 08, 2016: Review published.

Test Results

Design
Design
Style

The Grado SR225e look similar to the previous models, including the Grado SR60e/SR60, the Grado SR80e/SR80, and the Grado SR125e/SR125. They have the same retro aesthetic and also come in an all-black color scheme. However, unlike the previous models, the padding used on the ear cups is thicker and has a hollow center so that the sound leaving the ear cups is unobstructed. This makes them look like an over-ear model, yet they're still an on-ear headphone with surprisingly large and open ear cups.

6.5
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.37 lbs
Clamping Force
0.79 lbs

The Grado SR225e aren't as comfortable as the Grado SR60e/SR60 or the Grado SR80e/SR80. They changed the cushion-like padding design to a hybrid of over-ear and on-ear. This causes the ear cups to apply uneven pressure on the ears, which gets uncomfortable during long listening sessions. They also have the same cushion-like fabric for the padding that feels low quality and easy to tear. On the upside, they don't apply much pressure to your head, especially for an on-ear design.

0
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use N/A
Feedback N/A
Call/Music Control No
Volume Control No
Microphone Control N/A
Channel Mixing
N/A
Noise Cancelling Control N/A
Talk-Through
N/A
Additional Buttons N/A
7.9
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 2.3 ยฐC
6.1
Design
Portability
L 7.09"
W 6.69"
H 1.97"
Volume 93.31 inยณ
Transmitter Required N/A

The Grado 225e are moderately portable headphones. They don't have much bulk and have a thin headband. They'll easily fit in a bag and are lightweight enough to carry on your neck. Sadly, the ear cups are a little large for an on-ear design, and they don't fold up to take less space. The thick cable is also a bit bothersome and doesn't come with a carrying case or pouch, which is disappointing.

0
Design
Case
Type No case
L N/A
W N/A
H N/A
Volume N/A
5.5
Design
Build Quality

Build quality is subpar. The lightweight design and relatively dense ear cups can withstand a couple of falls without damage. Unfortunately, these headphones don't seem very solid, and the joints are plasticky and cheap-looking. The plastic used for the ear cups also has a few imperfections in the finish, which add to the cheapness of the build quality. The cushion-like material used for the padding is also susceptible to wear and tear. On the upside, the audio cable is thick and robust.

5.5
Design
Stability

The Grado SR225e aren't very stable on your head. They quickly fall off during any physical activity and have a thick and non-detachable cable that can yank the headphones off your head if it gets hooked on something. They're decently stable for casual listening sessions, and the ear pad design adds a little more stability, but they slip off your ears if you tilt your head too far.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  • Grado SR225e headphones
  • 1/8" to 1/4" Adapter

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-5.95 dB
Treble Amount
1.41 dB
8.1
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.38 dB
Sound
Raw Frequency Response
7.5
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.23 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
51.13 Hz
Low-Bass
-6.62 dB
Mid-Bass
-1.37 dB
High-Bass
0 dB
8.7
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
1.75 dB
Low-Mid
0.41 dB
Mid-Mid
0.01 dB
High-Mid
1.65 dB
5.6
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
5.41 dB
Low-Treble
4.12 dB
Mid-Treble
3.79 dB
High-Treble
0.65 dB
6.7
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
2.45 dB
Dips
1.13 dB
8.8
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.23
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.35
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
1.62
Weighted Phase Mismatch
5.12
6.8
Sound
Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
2.76 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
1.3 dB
PRTF Distance
10.05 dB
Openness
9.8
Acoustic Space Excitation
8.1
8.2
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.104
WHD @ 100
0.148
Isolation
1.0
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-1.82 dB
Bass
-0.14 dB
Mid
1.04 dB
Treble
-6.1 dB

Poor isolation. Due to the open-back design, the isolation is poor. They barely isolate any external sound, failing to achieve more than 7dB of isolation in the treble range.

2.5
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
60.02 dB

Poor leakage. As open-back headphones, they leak a lot of sound. The majority of leakage is happening between 300Hz and 20kHz, which is a very broad range. The leakage on these headphones sounds loud, full, and intelligible.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
N/A
In-line
N/A
Boom
N/A
Detachable Boom
N/A
0
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
N/A
LFE
N/A
FR Std. Dev.
N/A
HFE
N/A
Weighted THD
N/A
Gain
N/A
0
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise N/A
Speech + Subway Noise N/A
SpNR
N/A
Active Features
not tested
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
N/A
Continuous Battery Life
N/A
Additional Charges
N/A
Total Battery Life
N/A
Charge Time
N/A
Power Saving Feature
N/A
Audio While Charging
N/A
Passive Playback
N/A
Charging Port N/A
0
Active Features
App Support
App Name N/A
iOS N/A
Android N/A
macOS N/A
Windows N/A
Equalizer
N/A
ANC Control
N/A
Mic Control N/A
Room effects
N/A
Playback Control
N/A
Button Mapping N/A
Surround Sound N/A

No compatible app.

Connectivity
0
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
N/A
NFC Pairing
N/A
Line of Sight Range
N/A
Default Latency
N/A
aptX Latency
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
N/A
0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
9.0
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable No
Length 5.64 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Wired Latency
0 ms
Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC / PS4 Analog
Audio Only
PC / PS4 Wired USB
No
PC / PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
Audio Only
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Wireless
No
0
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
N/A
USB Input
N/A
Line In
N/A
Line Out
N/A
Optical Input
N/A
RCA Input
N/A
Dock Charging
N/A
Power Supply
N/A

Compared To Other Headphones

Grado SR80e/SR80

The Grado SR225e/SR225 are also almost identical to the budget Grado SR80e/SR80 but have slightly different pads. The different pads emulate an over-ear design, but it's not very large, which means they still sit on the ears like on-ear headphones. On the upside, the SR80 are a better value for your money since they sound basically identical to the SR225e, except for the slightly better distortion performance of the more premium model. The SR80e are also a bit less cumbersome to carry around since their cable is not as thick and bulky.

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