Grado Reference Series One Headphones Jack English

Sidebar 1: Jack English auditions the Grado Reference Series One headphones

I'm an audiophile; worse yet, I'm a reviewer. It's my job to hear some of the most incredible audio gear on the face of the planet. So it isn't much of a surprise that I love the cutting-edge stuff!

I kept repeating thoughts like these in my mind like a mantra as I sauntered along, walking from Penn Station to Rockefeller Center one morning on my way to work. But as I did, I must have looked like the Cheshire Cat. My grin stretched from ear to ear. Deep in my shoulder bag was a Radio Shack Optimus CD-3400 portable CD player: hidden in it was a Motown disc (MCD08058) containing not one but two of Duane Eddy's greatest albums—Have Twangy Guitar Will Travel and $1,000,000 Worth Of Twang. I was in heaven, bouncing along to the long-forgotten rhythms of "Cannonball," "Ramrod," "Three-Thirty Blues," and a host of other favorites from my youth. The weather may have been dreadful and my workday had yet to begin but I was at peace with the world.

I struggled through a day of endless meetings and voluminous memos. It was time to head home. With a lightened step and another foolish grin, I was joined by Booker T. and the MGs' (The Best Of..., Atlantic 81281-2). So the commute was going to take an hour and half—who cared? I was homeward-bound with the Memphis Sound!

So why was everything so great that day? After all, I listen to my portable CD players (I have four) an average of three hours per day. The answer is that I was listening to the Grado Reference One headphones for the first time.

Okay, I've never used the Grados (or any headphones) in my reference system, nor have I listened to any audiophile-approved CDs or LPs on them. Yes, I'm sure any number of passers-by have wondered aloud about the guy wearing these weird-looking headphones. But I have listened to a ton of music with the Grados and enjoyed every minute of it. It's rare that any audio product can come along and simply bowl me over. In this case, I yield. I just love these headphones! They have become my constant traveling companion. Thank you John Grado—what's next?—Jack English

Grado Laboratories
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