Sennheiser unveiled its latest In-Ear Monitor, the IE 200, at CES last month. The wired earphones were introduced in India earlier this month at a price of Rs 14,990. Sennheiser has enjoyed tremendous success with its IE range of in-ear monitors, with IE 600 and IE 900 being some of the more popular headphones among audiophiles. With IE 200, Sennheiser seeks to bring its signature ‘IE’ sound at a significantly lower price, appealing to the newer audio enthusiasts looking for an entry-level product. We got our hands on the Sennheiser IE 200 as soon as it launched and have been testing it for over a week, here is our comprehensive review.
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Sennheiser IE 200 review: Design
Unboxing the Sennheiser IE 200, you will find the IE 200 earphones neatly placed in a foam piece with the braided cable with MMCX connectors attached to them. The extra silicone and memory foam sets are placed in the adjacent section along with a handy pouch and the safety guide. Unlike IE 300, the IE 200 does not come with a hard carry case.
In terms of design and form factor, the IE 200 do not stray too far from the rest of the series. Sennheiser has toned down the look and made it more minimal, but retained the signature IE design profile. The earphones are made out of plastic, unlike the aluminium build of the IE 600 and 900. The braided cable feels quite sturdy and did not create any friction noise during our time of testing. If you have a better cable lying around, you can easily attach it to the earphones using the MMCX connectors.
The left earbud has the IE 200 branding on the inner panel while the right earbud has a red ring around it as a distinguishing feature. On the outer panel, the Sennheiser logo is embossed right below the air vent. The braided cable also gets an angled 3.5mm plug.
The IE 200 comes with three pairs of silicone and memory foam tips. We’d suggest trying either one to see which offers the better fit. Pushing the ear tips all the way down on the earbuds will deliver a bass-driven audio output. To reduce the low-end representation in the sound profile, pull them slightly outwards. However, in our testing, the ear tips got pushed all the way down after a period of staying in the ears.
The plastic ear hooks go over the top of your ear once you put on the earphones. The fit is firm and snug and offers a decent level of passive noise cancellation. Each earbud weighs just 4 grams, so you can easily wear these earphones for hours without feeling any real strain. Overall, we were very pleased with the design choices and the comfortable fit offered by the IE 200.
Sennheiser IE 200 review: Performance
The Sennheiser IE 200 are powered by dynamic 7mm audio drivers. The earphones have a frequency response of 6-20,000Hz and the impedance is just 18 ohms. You don’t necessarily need any additional hardware or headphone amplifier, simply plug the IE 200 into your smartphone or laptop and you are good to go.
The soundstage offered by the Sennheiser IE 200 upholds the reputation of the IE series. While it may not be as fleshed out as the IE 600 and IE 900, it has a personality of its own and does not stray away from the signature sound profile that we have come to associate with Sennheiser.
The range of frequencies is presented in a very subtle and intricate manner. The low end is given enough room to do its own thing without overpowering the mids and the highs. The overall output is perfectly balanced, letting you enjoy a nice blend of frequencies as the mix commands. Even the sound of the clapper in the background is well-pronounced and brings a good amount of attention to itself. There is no shrillness to the high-end frequencies and they are delivered in a very nuanced manner.
The versatility offered by the IE 200 is quite impressive as well. The soundstage across different genres did justice to the original mix and did not stray too far from the track. There is a level of neutrality that you expect from a good pair of IEMs. Overall, the IE 200 is exactly what you expect Sennheiser to deliver in this price range.
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At Rs 14,990, the Sennheiser IE 200 are the ideal pair of IEMs for people who are looking for an affordable entry point into the world of in-ear monitors. If you’re a seasoned audiophile, maybe there are better (also pricier) headphones out there for you. However, if you’re looking for a headset that is in the mould of IE 600 and IE 900 without the hefty price tag, the IE 200 is what you should be going for.
The dual-tuning ear tips do not always work as intended
Comes with a soft pouch instead of a hard carry case like the IE 300
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