Home Headphone Comparisons HD 201 vs. HD 202 | CLEAR WINNER!

HD 201 vs. HD 202 | CLEAR WINNER!

by Stuart Charles Black
Published: Last Updated on

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  • 2/1/21. Article/link cleanup.

Hi friend and Welcome!

Did you want to know the differences between The HD 201 vs. HD 202? Well grab a snack, sit back and relax because…

You’ve come to the right place!!

What I will bring you in this review

  1. Specifications
  2. Summary
  3. Pros
  4. Cons
  5. Video Review
  6. Amp/DAC requirements
  7. Who this headphone benefits?
  8. Consensus/Conclusion
  9. Similarities & Differences
  10. Final Word

Now without further ado, let’s get rolling!

Sennheiser HD 201

Sennheiser HD 201 vs. HD 206


price: check amazon! | check ebay!
type: closed-back
fit: circumaural
impedance: 24 Ohm
frequency response: 21Hz – 18kHz
material: plastic, leatherette
headband: leatherette padding
color: black/silver


If I had to sum up these headphones in one word it would be, totally underwhelming. Okay, that’s 2 words lol. But to put it quite simply, these are weak sauce. There’s hardly any bass, and they are some of the quietest headphones I’ve ever heard. They also feel cheap and flimsy, and overall is about as durable as a plastic spoon.

I didn’t have mine for too long because honestly I just gave them away. They’re that bad. I really can’t see why they would ever get more than a 3-star rating. The HD 202’s are a definite step up from these, and in this price range, I would go with those. There’s really no redeeming qualities in the 201 other than the fact that they are around $20.


  • Flat, pretty neutral sound.
  • Decent isolation.


  • Weight. They feel cheap and light.
  • Chord feels cheap, like it may not survive a chair being rolled over it. It’s also too long.
  • The plastic feels like it could snap at any moment.
  • The sound doesn’t come through loud enough at all.
  • Bass is nonexistent.
  • Not comfortable at all.

Video Review

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Amp/DAC requirements

At 24 Ohm, none.

Who these headphones benefit?

No one. And I apologize for being so blunt in this review, but I absolutely would never recommend these to anyone under any circumstance. Lol. They would make great headphones for a cardboard cut out of a man, and that’s being too nice.


Just stay away. Please.


Sennheiser HD 202

price: check amazon! | check ebay!
type: closed-back
fit: supra-aural (on-ear)
impedance: 32 ohms
frequency response: 18Hz-18000KHz
material: plastic, leatherette
headband: soft padded headband construction
color: black


This is a great entry-level set of cans for the enthusiast looking to see what gear is all about. A perfect upgrade from your trashy sub $10 earbuds, or a crappy set of headphones you’d find at CVS or something. I really do feel that Sennheiser was looking out for the little guy here. The sound is really good and loud, with plenty of bass (sometimes can get muddy at low frequencies). If you’re already accustomed to high end or even mid-level quality sound, these won’t impress you much.

A couple of really nice things about these headphones are their minimal design structure and the chord clip. Though plastic, it’s only one piece and you can detach the ear cups. This contributes greatly to their longevity and durability because there are fewer parts that can break.

The fact that they come with a clip for your excess chord slack is also a plus. I can wear these at work all day without having to worry about it. I simply wrap the extra in and clip it to my belt. The 3.5 mm end then plugs into my phone and I’m good to go.

I also like the fact that it comes with a 1/4″ adapter, which conveniently plugs into my audio interface…

Speaking of…

Check out my Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 review!


  • Huge sound in a small package.
  • plenty of bass.
  • chord clip.
  • comes with a 1/4″ adapter.
  • minimal design structure lends itself well to durability and longevity.
  • lightweight.


  • can be a bit uncomfortable after prolonged listening sessions. Needs adjustment.
  • Chord feels a bit throwback and somewhat cheap.
  • bass can get a bit muddy at really low frequencies.

Check out this hilarious and informative review!

Amp/DAC requirements

At 32 Ohm, None! How to choose a headphone amp!

Who these headphones benefit?

  • Bass-heads
  • People looking for a great value
  • People looking for an affordable headphone that will last them a long time
  • People who want to enjoy their music, rather than be too critical of it


Big Sound! Just be aware that they can get a bit uncomfortable after a while, and the bass can get a bit muddy with certain tracks. Overall the sound is amazing for an entry-level set, but there are certain tracks where it seems like all the components of the song are running together, making it slightly muddled.

You will like the hard-hitting bass and immediate satisfaction that these cans provide. The chord is a bit long and they can become uncomfortable after long listening sessions. Overall, they are a great set of entry-level headphones.

Check out my official Sennheiser HD 202 review!

Similarities & Differences


  • Both are entry-level, closed-back headphones from Sennheiser. Closed back vs. open back headphones.
  • Both have similar impedance levels.
  • Both have a long, somewhat cheap-feeling wire, that comes out of both ear-cups.
  • Both come with a 1/4″ adapter, which is nice at this price point.
  • Neither comes with a carrying case
  • Neither have much of a sound-stage. What is Soundstage?
  • Both favor the single, isolated vocalist.


  • Build. The HD 201’s are lightweight and feel a lot cheaper than the HD 202’s plastic. The 202 is built very differently in that the headband basically adjusts from the ear-cups. It’s really one piece of plastic attached to 2 cups. To me, they are more durable because there are fewer parts that can break. I could toss these around without an issue. The HD 201’s utilize a traditional build but feel very cheap by contrast. They are light, but in a way that makes you worry just how long they will last.
  • Sound. The 201’s are ridiculously quiet, with almost zero bass impact. Yes, they are pretty flat and neutral but come across as boring and sleep-inducing. I never looked forward to putting them on. The only reason I kept them for so long was to see if the sound would open up, and it never did. The 202’s by contrast sport a pretty huge sound for such an entry-level set. They are a definite step up from earbuds and are a joy to listen to. The bass does have a tendency to get boomy with certain tracks/recordings, but for the most part, it’s pretty controlled and tight.
  • Features/Accessories. The 201’s have none. The 202’s ear-cups can be removed, and they come with a belt clip for your extra slack. Yes, the cable feels somewhat cheap and long, but it does come in handy watching movies at night from your TV.
  • Fit. The HD 201’s are circumaural, meaning they go around your ears. The HD 202’s are supra-aural and rest on your ears.
  • Comfort. I found that the HD 202’s were more comfortable over long listening sessions. The 201’s are some of the most uncomfortable headphones I’ve ever worn. They needed a lot more frequent adjustment.
  • Look/Aesthetic. Their visual styles are completely different.
  • Space. Because the 87C picks up a greater area, there is more room for ambient sound. Depending on your tastes, this could be a good or bad thing. The 87A’s field is much narrower. Again, depending on your preference, you may want additional reverb or delay to make the mic sound to your liking.

Final Word

To me, it’s a no brainer, the HD 202 is the headphone to get in this price range if you’re looking for a good entry-level pair. They are a huge step up from the 201’s in virtually every way.


Well, that’s about it for today my friend! I hope you’ve taken away some valuable information in my Sennheiser HD 201 vs. HD 202 review!

Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I leave something out? Let me know below or contact me! I would love to hear from you…

All the best and God bless,





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MANUEL September 23, 2016 - 4:10 pm

es una estupidez decir que los 201 se sienten livianos y baratos y los 202 no por que los 201 son en efecto mas pesados .PÉSIMA CRITICA

Stu September 25, 2016 - 10:23 pm

Así que su opinión y yo la mía. He tenido experiencia con estos dos auriculares y no me gusta el 201 en absoluto. Gracias por detenerte.

Alex July 25, 2017 - 2:43 pm

No encuentro los Sennheiser 202 por ningun lado, puede ser que ya no los vendan? Se me acaban de cascar los que tengo y no se con que cascos reemplazarlos, desde luego los 201 no son lo mismo.

Stu July 25, 2017 - 6:49 pm

¿Cuál es su presupuesto? Te puedo recomendar otra cosa. Los 202 no están disponibles actualmente en Amazon.

Axelraziel October 8, 2018 - 8:57 pm

Hola Stu, disculpa una pregunta de la marca Sennheiser como seria el ranking de los modelos HD201, HD202, HD205, HD206

Stuart Charles Black October 9, 2018 - 5:33 pm

¡Hey hombre! Yo diría que el HD202 es más bajo que el HD201. Es más un sonido en forma de V mientras que el 201 es mucho más plano. No he tenido ninguna experiencia con el HD205 o el 206. Supongo que está buscando algo por debajo de $ 100. Si es así, avíseme y puedo hacer una recomendación basada en el tipo de sonido que está buscando. Bendiciones, -Estu


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