Summary: Let's start with the good stuff. The RS-1 sounds generally pleasing as a headphone. The RS-1, despite standing for "Reference Series 1", certainly is not a reference headphone for neutrality. Rather, the headphone possesses a sonically pleasing "wood colouration". The RS1 does vocals quite well if they are given powerful, clean amplification. The RS-1's bass is tight, and quick. The RS-1 has good pace, rhythm, and timing (PRaT). As far as its weaknesses.
Summary: The Grado RS1 is a reference for listening to classic music. In comparison to the AKG K701 (which is another reference headphone) the Grado sounds with more precise and intense sound (nearly brutally natural). The Akg K701 in comparison with the Grado sounds more soft and less stunning.
Summary: I own a SR125 and these blow those way out of the water. The sound is fuller and richer. The 125 sounds flat in comparison. The difference is huge. Definately worth buying if you have the cash.
Summary: I bought these to see how they compared to my Sennheiser HD-650's. The difference is remarkable.I do all my listening with headphones so I have gone thru about 5 difference kinds. These are amazing. Heavy choral parts(ie Bach B Minor Mass) are "sweet" not "edgy".
If you love music you need these!.
Summary: The current top of the John Grado line exemplifies what he has made the Grado name all about: hard hitting bass and exciting forward midrange, at the expense of extension, smoothness, build quality, and comfort. The highlight of the RS-1 is certainly the midrange, which is unapologetically upfront, making various music come alive with energy.
Summary: I've tried the Rs-1 thanks to a friend. I have to say that i loved this headphone. I've tried it with flat pads. They have a warm, natural, full bodied and very musical sound. The mids are magical. They let flow the music and the emotions in a way that no other headphones I've heard can do. Yes, a Senn HD650 is more neutral, while the Rs-1 is on the warm side, but... they have a very lovely sound. Excellent both with rock and classical (and wathever...).
Summary: Had these RS1 on loan from a friend and this is really a jaw opener. The transparency, details, bass impact and tightness, everything in one whole (expensive) package. Sounds like Grado, very upfront and amazingly it is able to really emphasis on the main equipment (or vocal). Female vocal tracks have never sounded any better, rock guitar instrumental is almost perfect with a captivating sound you jus cant take the RS1 off your heads (until your ear starts to feel...
Summary: Like other Grado's the RS-1's look like a throughback to the headphones I used on my crystal radio set of the late 50s. Unlike my Grado 125's, however, the materials used in the RS-1 are far superior and such be considering the price.
Having said that, these headphones produce, without a doubt, the best electronically-produced sound quality that I have ever experienced.
Summary: In short, the Headphones, though not very neutral are great for music. If you want the Grado slam and also want to play games, the the 325i (or perhaps the PS1s) would be best suited bbecause of their more crisp clear and impactful performance.
But for music, the rounded and slightly colored experience of the RS1 are simply a goose bump experience :-)..
Summary: The RS-1 are wonderful headphones provided they are equipped with flat pads, which is what they were originally shipped with and presumably designed for. They now ship with bowl pads, and I found that these made the sound too harsh and thin. With flats the sound is warm and detailed with good fast bass and a fabulous midrange that excels with vocals and guitars and the like. The highs are also good though slightly hazy or grainy at times.