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Grado GT 220 Review (2022): Are These TWS Earbuds Worth Buying?

Grado is a well-known brand amongst audiophiles. They are mostly known for their retro-inspired open-back headphones that deliver a slightly polarizing sound signature. But we are not talking about their open-back headphones today. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at the Grado GT 220 wireless earbuds, the brand’s first ever pair of true wireless earbuds. Are these earbuds worth buying? How do they compare against established TWS earbuds such as the AirPods Pro or the Sony WF-1000XM4? Are they worthy of the Grado name? Read on to find out.

Grado GT 220 vs AirPods Pro vs Sony WF-1000XM4 vs Sennheiser Momentum 2 Comparison Chart

ModelGrado GT 220 AirPods ProSony WF-1000XM4 Sennheiser Momentum 2
 
PriceCheck Price Check Price Check PriceCheck Price
Weight0.2 ounces (buds)
1.5 ounces (case)
0.19 ounces (buds)
1.6 ounces (case)
0.26 ounces (buds)
1.45 ounces (case)
0.21 ounces (buds)
2.05 ounces (case)
IP RatingIPX4IPX4IPX4IPX4
ANC & TransparencyNoYesYesYes
Bluetooth Version5.05.05.25.1
CodecsaptX, SBC, AACAAC, SBCLDAC, AAC, SBCaptX, SBC, AAC
AppN/AiOSSony Headphones ConnectSennheiser Smart Control
Battery6 hours
Up to 36 hours total with case
4.5 hours (ANC)
5 hours (w/o ANC)
Up to 24 hours total with case
8 hours (ANC)
12 hours (w/o ANC)
Up to 24 hours total with case
7 hours
Up to 28 hours total with case
ChargingUSB-C
Wireless
MagSafe
Wireless
Lightning to USB-C
USB-CUSB-C
ColorsBlackWhiteSilver, BlackBlack, White

Design

Grado’s GT 220 wireless earbuds offer nothing new when it comes to design and looks, but that’s not a bad thing.

grado gt 220 review design
The Grado GT 220 wireless earbuds with and without their charging case.

The Grado GT 220 look like standard TWS earbuds. They have a similar design to the Jabra Elite earbuds, and there’s also some similarities with Sennheiser’s Momentum True Wireless earbuds. The buds are contoured to fit most ears, however, the nozzles are a bit long, so people with smaller ear canals might not find them to have the best fit. Fortunately, you can use most aftermarket ear tips with these earbuds since they don’t have a proprietary design. If the tips that come with the buds do not fit you as well as you’d like, you have the option of trying out different tips.

The build quality of the Grado GT 220 wireless earbuds is good. The shells are made of high-quality polymer material and the case is made of high-quality plastic. The high-quality plastic build makes them lightweight without sacrificing durability. These earbuds are rated IPX4, so they are water-resistant. The case is a bit on the bulky side. It is portable, but not as pocketable as something smaller like the AirPods Pro. The Grado GT 220 come in black color only.

Features

Compared to most TWS earbuds in their price range, the Grado GT200 are lacking in features.

grado gt 220 review features
The Grado GT 220 case is not the most compact, but it’s still small enough to be portable.

Features-wise, the Grado GT 220 are kind of disappointing considering their price. They have touch controls, they support aptX, SBC and AAC, and they have dual microphones with noise reduction for calls. But that’s all of their features. They don’t have active noise cancelling and ambient or transparency modes that are common with earbuds at their price range.

The touch controls are responsive and sensitive—some might even consider them too sensitive. The left earbud handles calls and voice controls while the right earbud is for music playback. You can lower or raise the volume by tapping and holding the left and right earbuds, respectively. Unfortunately, you can’t remap or customize the controls with these earbuds since they don’t have a companion app.

As for noise cancelling, these do not have ANC. They do have excellent passive noise isolation since the nozzles are longer so they can form a good seal around your ear canal. But not everyone will have the same level of seal due to the difference in ear shapes. As far as features go, the Grado GT 220 wireless earbuds offer only the basics.

Sound

The Grado GT 220 have a slightly warm V-shape sound.

grado gt 220 review sound
The Grado GT 220 will fit nicely in most ears, but they also protrude a bit due to how they are designed.

Grado open-back headphones are popular for their distinct bright sound signature. However, with the GT 220 wireless earbuds, Grado decided to have a more consumer friendly tuning that emphasizes bass, but without sacrificing the mids treble forwardness. The result is a mild V-shape that provides plenty of thump and rumble in the low-end, while still having forward mids and detailed highs.

The bass is slightly boosted, but not to the level of other TWS earbuds such as those from Beats, Sony and others. There’s a mild boost in the mid-bass for a full-bodied low-end without bloat. The bass doesn’t bleed into the mids for a pleasant tonality.

The mids are forward, particularly, the upper mid-range. Male vocals are forward, but female vocals is where these TWS earbuds shine. As for the treble range, there’s an early drop-off, so these are not the airiest. They have detailed highs, but the overall sound signature is a bit on the warm side due to that early drop-off.

Battery

The Grado GT 220 battery life is good.

grado gt 220 review battery
You can wirelessly charge the Grado GT 220 in addition to charging via USB-C.

When it comes to battery life, the Grado GT 220 wireless earbuds offer good performance. They can last up to six hours on a full charge, and the case gives you five more additional charges for a total playback time of 36 hours. It would have been better if the earbuds themselves could last longer, but as they are, they are quite decent.

Charging can be done using the included USB-C cable or wirelessly. The case has four LEDs that light up as you charge. Each LED light represents 25% of the charge amount.

Check out our Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 vs AirPods Pro comparison here

Verdict

The Grado GT 220 are expensive given that they don’t have many features.

Grado GT 220

Sony WF-1000XM4

The Grado GT 220 are decent TWS earbuds, but they are lacking in many areas, especially when compared to similarly priced earbuds such as the AirPods Pro and Sony WF-1000XM4. They don’t have features such as ANC, Transparency and many sound enhancements such as EQ settings, DSPs and more. If these features are a must-have for you, then the Grado GT 220 won’t satisfy you. However, if you don’t particularly care about those features and you want a pair of TWS earbuds with a warm sound signature, the Grado GT 220 are worth considering.

FAQs

📌 Which earbuds are better, Grado GT 220 vs Sennheiser Momentum 2?

Sound signature is subjective, but when it comes to value, the Sennheiser Momentum 2 are better since they have more features.

📌 Which earbuds are better, Grado GT 220 vs Sony WF-1000XM4?

The Sony WF-1000XM4 are better than the Grado GT 220 in almost everything, except for sound quality since that is subjective.

📌 Are the Grado GT 220 waterproof?

No, they have an IPX4 rating, so they are water-resistant only.

📌 Do the Grado GT 220 have EQ?

If you have an Android device, you can EQ the Grado GT 220 using any of the system-wide EQ apps available on the Play Store. You can’t EQ the Grado GT 220 with Apple devices.

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.