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Review: Tannoy Reveal 402 Studio Monitors


Don’t be fooled by their size; these monitors pack a serious punch

Item: Tannoy Reveal 402 Studio Monitors

Price: (each) $140 US, £105 UK

Mic Rating:




At A Glance: The 402 is the smallest speaker in Tannoy’s updated design of their popular Reveal series of studio monitors. It features a super-efficient 4” woofer and 3⁄4” soft-dome tweeter, powered by a 50 Watt Bi-Amp power module with active crossover – meaning you can simply plug them straight into your mixing desk or audio interface. They have been optimized for near-field operation, such as on a meter bridge or on a table on either side of your monitor and have a very wide “sweet-spot” that enables you to move around without drastically affecting the stereo image. The 402’s feature a gain control on the rear panel and a high-frequency trim control to allow fine tuning of the overall sound. One interesting feature of the speakers is that of an AUX-in with link cable, which is designed to allow you to connect a MP3 player (or similar device) directly to the speakers if you just want to use them to listen to music.

High Notes: Despite their compact size, the speakers are capable of very high volume levels and bass frequencies are certainly not lacking. They have inputs for balanced (XLR) and unbalanced (TS) cables as well as the AUX-in via a 3.5mm stereo jack cable. Although they are primarily designed for near-field listening, they also work well at distance; which is great if you want to show your music to your friends or have other musicians with you during mixing sessions. If you are currently mixing on computer speakers you will instantly notice the difference switching to the 402s, with regards to picking out individual elements and helping create a good tonal balance in your mix.

Off Pitch: As each speaker is sold separately and has its own amplifier, there is no global volume control as you would find on some monitors that come as a pair and you will need to ensure you have the relative volumes matched. There is also a faint hiss from the speakers that might be noticeable by some users working close to them in very quiet environments while not listening to music.

VoiceCouncil Reviewer Says: It is remarkable how much sound Tannoy have managed to get out of these small speakers, which will no doubt make them popular to people working in their bedrooms or offices. There are also two other speakers in the range: the 502 and the 802, which have a 5” and 8” driver respectively and would suit people working in larger spaces or who require more low frequency definition. There is a lot of competition in the studio monitor category, however Tannoy have managed to produce these speakers with a price/performance ratio that is sure not to disappoint.

Manufacturer’s Website: http://www.tannoystudio.com

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  • noriga

    I had a really good impression by listening to these monitors through the available sample on soundcloud here https://soundcloud.com/soundhouse-3/tannoy-reveal402. These monitors although small have an impressive frequency range especially on low end even with it’s compact 4″ woofer.
    I would recommend these ones over the competing similar size like the Adam A3X or JBL LSR305 which I you have available samples. Try to listen to these samples through a good set of headphones and with flat eq on your media player as trying to increase or modify tones will not reflect the change as if it would have been done on the actual monitors themselved while the sample has been recorded. The most convincing sound is on these monitors or otherwise the Yamaha MSP3 (bit more expensive) or the Mackie MR5mk3 where I also found to be offering a wide freq. range.