It looks like just another townhouse on a quiet street in Brooklyn. But here, behind an unmarked door, a family business is quietly producing some of the most renowned headphones you’ve never heard of. But once you step into what used to be the family's fruit market and home, the Grado Labs story begins to unfold into the story of the audio industry as a whole.
The accolades for their work are almost endless, and all agree that Grado Labs headphones are the best in the business. However, their success certainly isn’t down to the advertising - the reputation has grown entirely through word-of-mouth. This small workshop in Brooklyn is going to fly under your radar unless you really know what you’re looking for. Grado Labs is low-key cool perfection, where the product is the only thing they need in order to shine.
Founded in the fifties by master watchmaker Joseph Grado - and still in the hands of the Grado family today - this brand has history. Over the years the company has produced a range of audio equipment, but in the 1990s their signature product became headphones - and there it stays. Grado Labs headphones quite simply deliver beautiful sound.
Grado Labs credit their success to the brand’s heritage and the higher quality that comes from still manufacturing the old-fashioned way: by hand, focusing on the little details of each pair of headphones with a precision that couldn’t be replicated by a machine. This main principle of great sound keeps things simple; they put sound first, no matter what. Nothing is hurried, nothing is released until they're ready. They consider every detail, and then do some really serious listening to the results. The reference points for the checking process are always the same three albums, which keeps everything consistent. When you buy your Grado Labs headphones you can be sure they’ve been tested on Eric Clapton, Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald.
Grado Labs epitomizes the extraordinary power of a brand who have been honing their skills through decades and generations while remaining true to a core value of making things well. Performance will always trump profit at this particular Brooklyn workshop.