"Superb sound quality like this comes at a price."4.5 starson by make_or_break
Pros: Simply sublime audio performance, with detail, textures and nuances that I've never experienced from a set of cans. Solid build and material quality, though not sure it's THAT special at this price point.
Cons: Better comfort, than before but still fatiguing over time like previous Grado sets I've tried and owned. Steep price of admission; my charge card is still simmering over this adventure. A bit of buyer's remorse since I already own the Senn HD-800.
Summary: The performance of my PS1000 headset is truly remarkable. In my opinion and auditory tastes, it's ousted my Senn HD-800 as the best-sounding set of cans that I own. But to be honest I would still have been more than happy and quite content with the Senn alone if I'd never purchased the PS1000, even knowing what I know about the Grado and hearing what I've heard from this superb set. Unless you REALLY have the money to burn (me, not really, unless I go through my usual self-justification contortions), I don't see (hear) the premium in owning TWO premium headsets, especially one that's another $300 more dear than the one I already had in my horde of headsets.
Low end performance is better defined with the PS1000 than on any earlier Grado set I've experienced, and spatially this unit does a fairly good job of containing itself from excess, something that I think Sennheiser goes overboard on at times, including with the HD-800. Detail resolution seems like it's about as good as it gets--at least for headphones--and even with middling quality recordings on CD, SACD or vinyl the PS1000 seems to make them more polished and flushed with enjoyable listening than they ever were previously. But is it really that much better? Again, it it was a price-no-object sort of comparison I'd say most definitely, but in the real world I can easily justify a price ceiling that stops with the Sennheiser set.
The nearly $1700 price tag buys you nicer materials than the plasticky HD-800--my main grouse with the Senn unit--and improved comfort (for me) than earlier Grado units. I still have issues using these over extended listening sessions, but generally they're tolerable from a wear standpoint. I didn't really comprehend Guttenberg's comment about there being no travel case or bag; maybe it's just cheap little ol' me but I'm not thinking that these cans (or the HD-800, for that matter) are outside-the-house material. Again, if the price doesn't cause you to flinch, then sure...go for it. But for me these are definitely IN-HOME headphones.
Would I recommend these to a friend? I'd recommend that--as long as he or she can comfortably afford them--the friend listen to them and compare them to other premium headsets and then decide. Neither the PS1000 or HD-800 is cheap, but if you're looking at this end of the market both are worth a serious audition. And perhaps you'll have no problem with the $300 premium and will just go for the Grado PS1000 with nary a flinch.
Me...I need to go throw some more water on my poor VISA card.