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Sony Walkman NWZ-W202 - Sony Walkman NWZ-W202

By Stuart Andrews



  • Recommended by TR
Sony Walkman NWZ-W202


Our Score:


There's enough raw grunt to make the frantic riffs and screamed vocals of Soundgarden's Rusty Cage sound good, and enough low-end presence to give Massive Attack's Angel it's brooding atmosphere and steadily building dynamic. It's always good to have something poppy when out on a run, and whether it was Justin Timberlake talking me through his Sexy Ladies (the jammy git) or Gary Barlow promising The Greatest Day, the NWZ-W202 works well with tight, clear productions and strong percussion.

Being picky, I would say that while the bass-end is thick it's not particularly articulate, and this can come across in songs with dominant bass lines. Meanwhile, mid-range clarity isn't perfect and the treble can be slightly brash. All the same, give me the NWZ-W202 over a low-end player with a pair of bundled earphones, any day.

Finally, Sony has played smart when it comes to battery life. Battery life of 12 hours is claimed, and in my test the NWZ-W202 exceeded this by several minutes. Plus, for those moments when you're about to go on a run then - DOH! - you realise that you forgot to charge the battery, you can just slip it onto the supplied charging cradle, making sure the standard mini-USB connector is correctly inserted, and three minutes later you have enough juice for an excruciating 90 minutes of jogging.

I also like the fact that when you take the headset off, magnetic clips on the left and right units hook together and the whole thing goes into standby mode. What could be an unruly mess quickly turns into a compact device you can sling in the gym bag without thinking. Nice.

The NWZ-W202 isn't the ideal compact player for everyone; with its 2GB capacity, its lack of navigation facilities and no display, it isn't really designed to be. But for those activities where you want to keep clear of cables and entanglements, it's ideal. I can't really imagine a better player to take on a run or to the gym, and now I've got used to having it during spells of gardening and DIY, I'm not looking forward to losing it. If you want a versatile, great-sounding small player for everyday use then the Sansa Clip remains your best bet, and with the right headphones will give you a better sound. If, however, you want music to work or workout to, then the NWZ-W202 comes highly recommended.


A well-designed MP3 system for active pursuits, offering decent sound quality and intelligent controls. For gym use, jogging or dirty work, it's hard to find anything better.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Value 8
  • Sound Quality 7
  • Features 7
  • Design 9


April 5, 2009, 6:13 am

Surely you mean 'Sound Quality', not 'Scan Quality' for the ratings, right?


April 5, 2009, 6:03 pm

It would sure be an awesome workout with that glorious looking pink colour around my head.


April 5, 2009, 7:08 pm

Scan Quality - How well it scans for FM stations...?


April 5, 2009, 8:47 pm

Nothing to see here... move along.. :)


April 5, 2009, 10:54 pm

You forgot to show us a picture of how daft they look round your head (pref with the pink ones). :-)


April 6, 2009, 1:59 pm

Not to be icky, but how easy are they to clean? I have a pair of SE210s that I can't really use for sport as they get quite sweaty.


April 7, 2009, 5:35 pm


The earbuds will need cleaning/replacing, but otherwise there isn't too much to get grungey. There's nothing that would cause you any more problems than the average pair of in-ear 'phones, and actually less in the way of wax/sweat/grime trapping embellishment than some models I could mention.


April 9, 2009, 5:02 pm

Huh. The new Shuffle was bad enough, but this is even worse. Are cables really that annoying? I just route them along the inside of my clothing and after that I don't even notice them anymore. I won't buy a device that only works with proprietary headphones, and I sure as hell won't buy one that's fixed to a pair of phones. And that's coming from a fan of IEMs -- I know a lot of people who can't stand them.


April 10, 2009, 4:59 am

@ morsch - Guess you don't use your mp3 player for running then.... The best cabled headphones will not sound that great when you're jogging. FOr instance, in-ear phones suffer from that "thumping in the back of your head" noise as your feet pound the pavement. Situations where that does not occur, these sorts of earbuds are too far out of the ear to actually sound good. Hopefully, these rememdy some of those problems by cutting the cable out completely.


January 27, 2010, 11:35 pm

Hi,Read my review of this player

Sony recently launched the much hyped Walkman Unwired priced at Rs 4,990.It combines stellar design with good performance.The Walkman W202 takes mobility to a new direction by completelty cutting the wires.It looks good and sounds even better.No need to carry your dangling headphone wires along with your IPOD.The Walkman sports unique features such as Zappin which is very handy as there is no screen on this player.The controls are embeded on the right ear-piece of this player.There is a jog dial that controls the play/pause/forward/bacward/zappin-in/zappin-out functions on this player.A plastic cover has been provided to store the player(To prevent magnetic leakage).A USB stand is provided through which you can connect the player to the PC.The player charges while it is connected to the PC.3 min. of charge enables 90 min. of music playback and the overall time taken to charge the player is 30-90 min.You can also charge this player with mobile charger.(I use the charger of Samsung RAGA)The player is detected easily as soon it is connected to the PC.You can drag/drop to transfer music files to this player or use the provided software.(Content Transfer 1.1).This player supports "mp3,aac,wma" audio formats.Now coming to the preformance,its ideal for the people on the move(For jogging,cycling,walking etc.)The ear-piece fits quite easily in the ears and remains fixed during any body motions.The sound quality is good and is on the warmer side.The highs and the mids sound crystal clear and the bass is tight.Although the Bass lacks punch and doesn;t extend deep,this won;t be an issue unless you are bass freak.The button response is good but may cause problems for people with large hands.This walkman is ideal for listening to Accoustic Pop,Jazz,Trance,Bollywood Pop.It sits around your neck when not in use so it is very convenient.FM Radio and Voice Recording feature is missing as quite understandingly there is not enough space to put these features in the player.There is also absence of 3.5 mm jacks and Audio-in jack so you can't connect this player with speakers.The walkman is known to be having problems with sweat as it is not waterproof.The sweat causes malfunction in this player if it enters through the USB HUB.So beware and find something to cover the USB HUB(I am using a rubber cover of old mobile).Overall it is an excellant gadget and a must-buy for electronic lovers. RATINGS; Features - 7/10 Built - 10/10 Performance - 7.5/10 Value for money - 8/10

Ariadna Quijano

June 23, 2014, 4:38 pm

One question: how can you go from one album to the next in the W202?

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