If you are looking for a new pair of headphones that sound great, don’t look like every other pair of bright plastic headphones, and won’t break the bank, then you owe it to yourself to check out the Grain Audio OEHP over-the-ear headphones. At under $200, these headphones exude class, offer serious comfort and, best of all, they sound great.
As soon as you pull the OEHP headphones from the box you’ll know they are something special. The headphone enclosures are built out of grain-matched solid walnut that looks fantastic. The walnut has a hand oiled finished. And while a spray finish would be faster, not to mention less expensive, Grain Audio insisted on taking the route that produced a product with that “extra bit of quality.” Doing so takes time, and it shows! The OEHP are gorgeous.
Inside the box you will find:
- 1 ¼” Phono Adapter
- Inline remote and mic
- Documentation and brand book
- Soft carrying case
- OEHP Earphones
The ear cups are made from thick, form-fitting foam that creates a surprisingly good seal and is comfortable for extended periods of listening. It is worth noting that the initial pictures of the OEHPs showed a different material in use for the ear cups. I asked about the change in material and was told that the original design looked good on paper but proved uncomfortable when worn for extended periods of time. As a result, the company went back to the drawing board and came up with a new approach. They made a good call, and the result is surprisingly light and comfortable.
The headband is also thin and light. It is, however, far stronger than it might initially look. The cushioning on the headband is strategically placed and makes for a comfortable fit that lets the headphones all but disappear while you wear them.
If you are getting the idea that these headphones look simple and light but are the result of thoughtful and complex design decisions, then you are spot on. This even shows up in the adjustment mechanism that allows the ear cups to adjust to various heads. It looks like a simple mechanism but there are actually over two dozen different parts that synchronize to create the seemingly simple mechanism.
All of this comes together to create a pair of headphones that are among the most comfortable I’ve experienced. (And I’ve checked out a great number of headphones in recent years!)
Of course headphones that look good and offer decent comfort also need to offer impressive sound. The good news here is that the Grain Audio OEHP also sound great and deliver a clean and enjoyable audio experience.
Here’s what Grain Audio has to say about the Grain Audio OEHP:
- WOOD: It’s wonderful stuff. There’s a reason it’s used in its solid form on the best acoustic instruments in the world… It just sounds better. It looks great too and the distinct grain patterns make each one unique. Each pair of OEHP’s feature grain matched, FSC certified solid walnut enclosures.
- SOUND: We pair each enclosure with our proprietary driver that features a Neodymium magnet and a CCAW voice coil. What does that mean? It means that you’re hearing your music as the artist intended- no fake bass boost, no weird mid-range, just pure, natural sound.
- DESIGN: Simple is complicated to achieve. The OEHP was designed to highlight the natural beauty of its solid wood earcups. The inline mic is streamlined and intuitive to use. There are no unnecessary flourishes or extraneous details. These beautiful headphones give you a distinct style that stands apart from the crowd.
Here are some listening impressions.
Artist: Empire of the Sun
Impressions: The track has a heavy bass beat but vocals that soar thanks to the lead singer’s falsetto. Strikingly the OEHP handled the low beat and the high vocals equally well and presented them in a strikingly enjoyable manner.
Artist: Donald Fagan
Track: Good Stuff
Impressions: Through the OEHPs this track sounded far more kicked back and “chill” than they do through some other headphones. It was a bit different from what I had heard from this track previously but was quite enjoyable and made the track come off even cooler than it normally has when I listened to it.
Artist: Nightmares on Wax
Track: Da Feelin
Impressions: Fagan’s laid back track prompted me to check out the OEHP listening to Da Feelin. This track is layered beats and vocal riffs. It came through with the relaxed beats it is mean to have. When the main vocals began they sat in front of the backing beats and made for a truly enjoyable listen. The track can be a bit heavy in the bass beat but this was want overpowering with these headphones.
Artist: Zero 7
Impressions: This track takes stereo separation seriously, beginning only in the left channel before breaking in with a secondary layer on the right channel. The vocals are similarly divided and the harmony interplay between the two channels. I’ve long loved this track but when heard through the OEHPs it sounded better than ever. Seriously, these headphones made it play in a way I had not previously heard and I loved it. The balance between the two speakers made all the difference. Wow.
Impressions: The crisp guitar on this track came through with the sharpeners that adds to the songs meditative nature. When the vocals began they came through with a similar crispness. I was a bit disappointed that vocals did not sit in front of the instruments the way they do when the track is heard through other headphones since the track sounds even better when they do.
Video Look at the Grain Audio OEHP
- Ear cups made of FSC Certified Walnut with hand-applied oil finish
- 2x40mm proprietary loudspeakers featuring
- Neodymium magnets and a CCAW voice coil
- Inline mic and remote
- TPE jacketed cable
- 3.5mm jack and ¼” adapter
- Weight .5 lbs (.22kg)
Yeah, I really like these headphones. And I’m not alone. Our friends over at Technabob also received a review sample and were impressed. Read Paul’s review here.
In fact, thanks to Grain Audio we’ve teamed with Technabob and The Awesomer to give away a brand new pair of Grain Audio OEHP. Check below for details on entering.
You can learn more about the headphones here on the Grain Audio website.
Source: Company Supplied Review Sample of the Grain Audio OEHP
What I Like: Carry bag is not the most protective we have seen; Comfortable; Real wood; Quality that shows; Very enjoyable to wear and listen to
What Needs Improvement: Clearly designed to be used with smartphones and tablets more than with high-end home audio systems