Grado Headphones SR80i
Retail price: $99
Grado’s flagship headphones — their Professional Series — run upwards of $1,500, and they’re supposed to be next to godliness. But the open air Prestige Series offers an astounding level of performance for just $100.
These are pure listening enjoyment. They’re not reference cans, but they provide a wonderfully rich platform whether you’re tearing up metal, or delicately listening to classical. The SR80i’s will definitely inspire many to seek out lossless files to replace 192kbps rips that sounded “fine” on their little iPod earbuds.
The first few weeks I had these, I felt like my entire music catalog was brand new, and nuances were highlighted that I never knew existed. The SR80i’s are, dollar-for-dollar, the absolute best in this price range.