The Tannoy HTS-101 demonstrated the company’s enviable pedigree in the compact speaker systems market, delivering better sound quality than its modest £500 price tag would suggest. We’re hoping Tannoy can emulate the success of this great-value system with the follow-up, a £400 package that goes by the name of TFX – and TrustedReviews has been granted the world’s first review.
TFX is the evolution of Tannoy’s SFX system, its best-selling budget speaker range ever. This updated version adds new, improved drivers, restyled enclosures and a revised subwoofer, all of which are designed to handle the rigours of today’s Blu-ray surround sound formats.
It’s a similar proposition to the HTS-101, offering a set of four compact, upright satellites for the fronts and rears, a horizontally-aligned centre speaker and a powered subwoofer. It’s all shoved in a single box, making this a quick and convenient way of getting a tonally-matched speaker system that won’t dominate your living room.
The 131mm-high front/rear satellites are immensely attractive. A gloss black finish is always a winner, but the standout feature is the curved rear and top section, which makes them more elegant than the HTS-101 and many other sats in this price bracket. They’re chic and modern, particularly when perched on the optional floorstands or mounted on the wall with the supplied brackets. The system also comes in a less eye-catching white finish.
They also have a solid, weighty feel in the hand, which isn’t always the case with budget all-in-one speakers – although we think the Cambridge Audio Minx system is superior in terms of build and styling.
The one aspect of the TFX that disappoints is the size of the binding posts on the back. Accessing the holes and threading the cable is tricky because the holes are small. The supplied thin cables make things easier, but if like us your cables are quite thick then you’ll need to wind the ends up pretty tight.
The centre channel shares the same curved back end, robust build quality and fiddly binding posts, and at 260mm wide it’s not going to demand much space under the TV. And although the TFX subwoofer eschews the curves and gloss-black styling of the satellites for a textured matt finish, it’s easy on the eye and is relatively compact. It comes with large spikes that screw onto the bottom.