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HD 201 Velour Pad Mod=Squeeze the value out of those $20 headphones

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I lived with my HD 201s for a couple years dealing with the lack of bass until I finally decided to upgrade, mainly for more bass and better sound quality. I bought and extensively used the HD 438s, which sounded good and I thought I would keep them even though they didn't give the bass I really wanted.

 

Then I tried the HD 438s pads on my HD 201. I was shocked; instant increase in bass and horizontal sound stage. I bought a pair of the HD 438 earpads from Sennheiser over the phone and did a direct comparison between the HD 201s and the HD 438s with the same ear pads. Once again, I was shocked by what I heard. The HD 438s no longer sounded like they were worth $90, but more like $50 at most. After a few songs I decided the HD 201s held so much value for $20, and then add the fact I could get $90 back by returning the HD 438s and keep the HD 201s with the new pads.

 

The pads can be found here: http://www.sennheiserusa.com/serviceandsupport_part-finder

 

The ear pads (Part# 534441) are found under the product model code 502766 (HD 438), and can also be found by searching for the HD 438 in the product model drop down box. You can now order online or over the phone (1-877-736-6434 ext. 1)and the pads will come within a week. They go for a bit over $15 including tax and shipping, so the investment is definitely worth it. If you have any Sennheiser around ear phone with the pleather pads and are looking for more bass, try these out!


Edited by TrantaLocked - 4/17/13 at 1:24pm
post #2 of 7
Sorry to bump this, but how do you actually remove the HD 201's earpads? Mine seems glued in.
post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikkojames15 View Post

Sorry to bump this, but how do you actually remove the HD 201's earpads? Mine seems glued in.

Pull harder. The pad is glued to a flexible plastic backing which is held in place via clips on the cup.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikkojames15 View Post

Sorry to bump this, but how do you actually remove the HD 201's earpads? Mine seems glued in.

 

They take a bit of effort to get out, but you have to be careful at the same time. The plastic notches that keep the pads in can break easily, as one of mine broke, though the pad with the broken notch still stays in place fine. 

 

Have you tried the new pads yet? If so, pretty crazy difference right? 

 

I'm still using my HD 201s, and they have been used so much that the plastic film covering over the head pad at the top has worn away to reveal a velour-like material. I don't have my original pads with me, but I think it may be the same with those. Even still, the original pads have less "chunk" or width to them compared to the HD 438 pads, causing the ears to touch the drive casing and prevent a good seal. 


Edited by TrantaLocked - 12/3/12 at 2:23pm
post #5 of 7

Found this thread after googling about these headphones, I got said pads, cant believe the difference they make! I went into it not expecting much but it seems a pair of Velour pads completely change these cans, the bass is so much more powerful and forceful, a little overpowering with some music but for the £20 these cost and the £5 the pads were its definitely a major improvement.

post #6 of 7

I signed up just to respond to this. I read this post about a week ago because I bought my HD201's used and the ear pads had been worn out. So I bought the ones for the 438's from the website and they feel so good against my ears!!! I have also noticed an increase in noise cancellation. super good.

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

I am both surprised and happy to say that I still use the same pair of HD 201s with the modded ear pads. I've listened to other high end headphones, and honestly these headphones with the cup mod sound not too far from models a hundred+ dollars more. The sound, of course with the mod, is definitely incredible for the price. The mid range hump that the drivers have really give electric guitar some amazing texture. Hearing texture in general is easy because of how dropped off the bass is naturally, and the new cups definitely bring out the existing bass more without destroying the fine textures. It is an interesting sound that may be an acquired taste. Not the smoothest sound, but again, amazing for electric guitar and metal in general.

 

My main drawback is vocal reproduction. I think most higher end headphones produce vocals in a more lifelike and clear way, and it can sometimes be obvious if you are A/B testing. The HD 201 is not a very balanced headphone, and even with the pads I wouldn't say it is very natural. Better than a V curved headphone, which is almost everything now a days unfortunately.


Edited by TrantaLocked - 1/23/14 at 4:44pm
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