Grado is legendary among audiophiles — partly because it makes truly excellent open-air headphones with a delightfully retro design, and partly becausefor over 60 years.
Now, for the first time, Grado will offer a wireless headset — and we’ve just discovered that the company has quietly revealed exactly what that headset will be.
You’re looking at the Grado GW100, a Bluetooth 4.2with the same trademark Grado styling, Grado audio drivers, and open-air design as ever.
“We took our time and made no compromises in the GW100. Nothing is lost except the wires,” writes Grado at its website.
Grado also claims they’re the only open-back Bluetooth headphones on the market, though there’s one likely reason for that: Bluetooth headphones are often a private way to listen to music and calls in public, whereas open-ear headsets like Grado’s… let’s just say they tend to leak sound.
The company claims the GW100 will last 15 hours on a charge at 50 percent volume, and it also comes with a 3.5mm audio jack and cable if you’d rather plug in a physical wire. Plus, there’s a microphone on the GW100 so you can use it as a Bluetooth headset.
According to a user manual which CNET spotted in a brand-new FCC filing, you’ll be able to use the power button to accept or reject calls, or double-tap it to summon your phone’s voice assistant, too — another use for that microphone. You’ll charge the headphones with a micro-USB cable.
What we don’t know about the Grado GW100 is the retail price or release date — but Grado’s official online retail partner 4ourears.net suggests they’ll cost $249 (roughly £200 or AU$330) online. Grado’s own page only has a “notify me” button for upcoming pre-orders.
Here’s the full spec sheet, straight from Grado’s site:
- Bluetooth Version: 4.2 with apt-X
- Battery Capacity: 320mAH
- Working Distance: 10m
- Battery Life: 15 hours* (“based on 50 percent volume throughout playtime” says Grado)
- Frequency Response: 20Hz~20KHz
- Mic Sensitivity: 42dB +/- 3dB
- Transducer Type: Dynamic
- Operating Principle: Open Air
- SPL 1mW: 99.8 dB
- Nominal Impedance: 32 ohms
- Driver Matched dB: .05 dB
- Included: Headphones, Warranty, Grado story-sheet, micro-USB charging cable, 3.5mm audio cable
We’ve pinged Grado for even more info, and we’ll let you know what we hear.