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Customer Review

1,113 of 1,140 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, possibly a bit heavy in the low freq. for professional use., 15 Oct. 2010
By 
This review is from: Sennheiser 504291 HD 202 Closed Back On-Ear Stereo Headphone (Electronics)
I bought these headphones about a year ago to use at college where I'm studying sound engineering.

I will start off by mentioning my few problems with them, most of which have been mentioned by other reviewers.

They are bass heavy. For most modern music, especially the dance genre's, these headphones will give you almost exactly the sound you want. However if you're planning on using these in a professional environment, working with more classical, or acoustic music you will need to keep an eye on how much bass you're rolling off.

The cord. All three metres of it. I don't think I've come across a cable that loves to get it self tangled more often in my life. Also, if you're working in a room with other people, you need to keep an eye on where all that excess is (I have had to extricate mine from the wheels of chairs in college's IT suites more than once). Finally such a long cable is hardly ideal for use while on the move. Yes, it comes with a storage reel, however this is slightly bulky, and if you're anything like me, it will have disappeared within a few weeks.

Finally, the ear pads. While these are comfy, in my experience after an hour or two of use they do begin to make the area around your ears feel warm and a bit sweaty.

Now onto the good points.

Despite their strength in the low frequencies, they also give an excellent representation of those mid and high frequencies. They are a bit limited, in so far as their frequency response tops out at about 17kHz, but most people by their mid twenties are struggling to hear that high anyway, and it is very unusual to get instruments playing that high (without taking into account harmonics).

The cord. As much as in my circumstances i dislike its length, it has proven useful even for me. If you are planning on using these at home, it gives you an awful lot of freedom for a wired pair of headphones. I have found the length just about ideal for lying in bed watching tele with these on (my tele being about 80cm beyond the foot of my bed). If there's no-one likely to be around to get themselves tangled in the wire, then again, these will probably be ideal. If you're going to be using them near wheeled chairs, I would be making a point of keeping hold of that cable-tidy device though.

The noise-cancellation. I can think of only one way to describe it: brilliant. Just putting these things on makes everything so much quieter, but when you start piping in some music you're going to want to learn sign language. Short of the noisiest environments (for example the middle of a building site), with some music gently coming in, you're not going to hear a thing from the outside world. On more than one occasion while I've been listening to music on these, I've not even realised my tutor's are actually speaking.

The power. I'm not a fan of overly loud music, but when mixing I've found its useful to listen to tracks really loud, and really quietly. On the times I've wanted to listen loudly, the HD-202's have definitely delivered. While at average levels, and on your head these things are not audible to the guy sitting next to you, when you choose to give them some oomph, they can be heard across a room. On contrast, when listening really quietly, these have also delivered flawlessly. Another advantage of the noise cancellation mentioned above; you can keep your ears safe, and still appreciate your music on the bus/train.

The durability. As I mentioned earlier, I have had these around about a year. During that year they have suffered quite an amount of abuse. They've been thrown in and out of my college bag, been on a trip to Den Helder in Holland, Fuerteventura and been repeatedly dropped on the floor once I've finished with them at night. All thats happened to them until very recently, is one of the 'phones' themselves has fallen off the headband on maybe 3 occasions. On those occasions it's just snapped back on, and been fine. Recently I've had an issue with the right headphone cutting out if the wire is twisted slightly the wrong way. Frankly, I feel that this is to be expected with the amount of torture they've endured over the last year, and is almost definitely the result of mis-treatment on my part. The build quality is really rather quite good, especially for the price!

The conclusion:
If you're looking at a pair of headphones for music production, or just because you've realised how bad in-ear earphones generally are (not to mention the ill-effects on your hearing), these are an excellent buy. At the time of writing I think these are priced around the £28 margin. More than I paid, but still worth it in my opinion. I am going to be looking at something higher in the range in the near future, but as a first stop into headphones, or as an upgrade from headphones like skull-candy's which are not designed to provide the high quality demanded by industry, these are an excellent choice.
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Showing 11-20 of 28 posts in this discussion
Posted on 18 Jul 2011 00:06:43 BDT
zanda says:
Hi, I just saw the the specs on these headphones and was wondering with a frequency response of 18-18000 hz are they still good for really really low base? It's just my in ears cannot produce really low base without breaking up? Great review by the way :)

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Jul 2011 22:19:46 BDT
Last edited by the author on 19 Jul 2011 22:21:46 BDT
Will says:
Trust me, there is very little they will struggle with in the bass department! They obviously won't reach as low as a studio grade reference sub, however they will still be going pretty strong at around 30Hz from what I remember of them. It's a little small (a quick search of something along the lines of 'sennheiser HD 202 frequency response' should find some bigger versions), but this may be of some help http://graphs.headphone.com/iconGraph.php?graphID=483 . Image along with an alternate review can be found here: http://www.headphone.com/headphones/sennheiser-hd-202-ii.php . If you need anything below that sort of range you need to start looking at a pair of speakers anyway - the low end presence of a kick is about 50-60Hz, and even low end bass recordings and synths tend to bottom out about that point as well.

You may find yourself having to lower the volume slightly, but that would happen with just about any headphones - as far as I'm aware there isn't anything else that will give you the bass response and the higher end clarity as well in this price range.

In reply to an earlier post on 20 Jul 2011 14:39:42 BDT
zanda says:
ok thanks alot, was wondering wether to get those or the sony xb300 extra bass ones. it looks like the sonys have great bass but are not so sharp and clearer in the higher range, so if the sennhiesers have good base i'll go for them :) thanks alot for the help :)

Posted on 8 Oct 2011 00:28:33 BDT
Neil Cairns says:
Thank you for this excellent, detailed review. I found it very helpful.

Posted on 11 Oct 2011 16:10:10 BDT
A. Ponciano says:
Dou you think the noise-cancelling system would work well while playing along with the drums?
Not professionally. I'm looking for headphones only to practice at home.

Posted on 19 Oct 2011 16:17:37 BDT
Crunchy Tech says:
Very good review man cheers. I am replacing some €5 Sennheiser I bought 3 years ago (still working and sounding fine!) so €30 HD202 II should make me happy for the next couple of years :)

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Oct 2011 18:54:48 BDT
Will says:
More than likely yes. It's been just over a year since I used these, so my memory is a little fuzzy on them, but from what I remember they should work great, and you'll probably get a nice fat kick drum sound from them ;).

Posted on 30 Oct 2011 13:13:09 GMT
DKL says:
Very helpful review, thanks a lot!

Posted on 24 Feb 2012 18:04:54 GMT
Lee Dixon says:
Very helpful review :) thanks for taking the time to write it up.

Posted on 19 Apr 2012 16:41:48 BDT
@ says:
Very helpfull review - going to buy a pair now !

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