In short succession I fell in with Grado’s original 120Ω GR8, then their GR10, and finally their GR8e. Put simply, I’ve become a single-driver supremacist. Since late 2016, however, I’ve seldom listened to any of the GR series.
Since 2016 I’ve come to abhor tethers of any sort. And, the GR series’s cable, whilst tough, is both energetic and coily. And, thanks to a thick-ish plug, it doesn’t get on with my favourite iPhone case.
Flares Pro is stunning, but isn’t quite as good sounding as the gR8e. There was nothing doing; in late January I hit up e-Earphone, laid out 55$, and said goodbye to my stock GR8e. Today my GR8e came back, shimmed in Flares Pro-friendly MMCX, and - for the most part - sounding like a million bucks.
The big plus is that now it is balanced and wireless. The singular draw back is that, because the GR8e is sensitive, it picks up hiss from the Flares Pro wireless DAC. In its new form, the GR8e reinforces the strong bias I have against poorly-designed wireless earphone circuits. Any native wireless earphone that hisses is poorly designed. Examples include Jays a-Six Wireless, Nuforce BE6i, and pretty much everyone else. It even includes my favourite wireless earphone, Apple AirPods.
Flares Pro on the other hand mates a typically hissy wireless circuit with an insensitive earphone. As a result, Flares Pro hisses barely, if at all. Frankly, it is the bomb. If and when Grado bring out a wireless version of their GR series, I hope to highest Heaven they takes into account driver sensitivity.
P.S.: please don’t tell Grado what I did to the GR8e.