Ryobi P208 vs P271 Drill/Driver: Which One’s Right for Your Needs?

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The Winner(#1)
Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
The Runner up(#2)
Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
Model
Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
User Rating
The Winner(#1)
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Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
Model
Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
User Rating
User Reviews
The Runner up(#2)
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Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
Model
Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
User Rating
User Reviews

Both of these Ryobi cordless drill/drivers are very equitable in terms of versatility, power and even cost. Very little separates them, and if you asked which one was better, well frankly it’s a good question. There are a few differences. As usual, those differences don’t suggest that one is far and away superior to the other, but only create options for individual tool owners to sort out which one is right for them.

Ryobi P208 front view

What’s the difference between them?

Performance – No Edge

Both of these cordless drivers offer options across two speeds and 24 clutch settings. This permits a wide range of versatility in torque and speed and allows the kind of control that allows a tool to shift easily and painlessly between driving screws to taking apart furniture in the space of seconds. Both also feature magnetic strips that allow an operator to stick the bits they’ll need and even extras like screws on the tool without having to stop to hunt that stuff up.

Price – No Edge

These two tools are virtually identical in price. The slight listed difference between the two is such that on any given day things might flip and be the other way around. Normally, if this is the case, we look to the batteries, which often separate the two. In this case, both belong to Ryobi’s vast One+ family of tools. Not only are the batteries the same price, they use the same batteries and the same charger. No edge on this, either.

Ryobi P271 side view

Features – Slight Edge: P208

The P208 is compact and lightweight and perfect for squeezing into hard-to-reach spots. It’s not that the P271 also isn’t. In fact, the two again are almost an identical match in terms of physical dimensions. What the P208 has that the P271 doesn’t is an LED to help you see what it is that you’re working on. Since this is really the only feature that one has that the other doesn’t, that means a slight edge for the P208

Design – Slight edge: P271

The P208 is just so very slightly larger and heavier than the P271. Probably during an average day’s use, you wouldn’t even notice it. But after a long day’s use, when pounds feel heavier after use, you might. It’s just enough of a difference to give the P271 a very slight advantage in terms of tool design.

Ryobi P208 back view

Quick Rundown of Ryobi P208:

Sale
Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
364 Customer Reviews
Ryobi P208 One+ 18V Lithium Ion Drill/Driver with...
  • TOOL-LESS BIT CHANGES: No chuck keys are necessary to replace bits here. Simply place the bit into...
  • VARIABLE TORQUE AND SPEED: 2-Speed gearbox and 24-position clutch give you access to a wide variety...
  • MAGTRAY: Store extra bits or fasteners on the tool when you're high up on a ladder and need easy...

A workhorse for home hobbyists and people who just need a basic cordless driver/drill around the house for routine maintenance and simple jobs like hanging shelves, the P208 is perfect to put at the center of your Ryobi One+ world. It’s ever so much heavier than the P208, which isn’t likely to be noticed on an average day’s use but might be a bit of an annoyance after a whole day.

Pros
  • Versatile
  • Compatible with One+
  • LED lights to illuminate work areas
Cons
  • Slightly larger, heavier than P271

Quick Rundown of Ryobi P271:

Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
353 Customer Reviews
Ryobi P271 One+ 18 Volt Lithium Ion 1/2 Inch...
  • EASY BIT CHANGES with the 1/2 inch keyless chuck. Switch bits simply be retracting the cuff
  • CONTROL YOUR TORQUE with the 24-position clutch attached to the 2-speed gearbox to suit a variety of...
  • CONVENIENT STORAGE with the magnetic bit holder so you can keep all of your drill bits and...

Just a smidge smaller than the P208, the Ryobi P271 is just that much more compact and maneuverable into place. As part of the Ryobi One+ system, it’s part of a highly versatile system that shares power sources with a wide range of tools. If it had LED lights to illuminate the workspace, we’d be tempted to marry the thing.

Pros
  • Slightly more compact than the P271
  • Compatible with Ryobi’s One+
  • Versatile in terms of motor speed, torque
Cons
  • No LED lights

Conclusion

When it comes down to the choice between the R208 and R271, it’s a matter of little things. Really little things. Both offer the same range of customization in motor speed and torque. Both offer the same easy swap-out of bits. Both come from Ryobi’s One+ family, so they even share batteries, and both are very close in price. The small things that separate them are an LED light for the P208 and a slightly smaller frame for the P271. The one that is right for you is a matter of personal preference.

About the Author Adam Harris

Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!