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LEA Professional Amplifiers Help Colorado Charter School Bridge the Gap Between Audio Quality, Performance and Affordability

When Ridgeview Classical Schools in Fort Collins, Colorado, a public K-12 charter school serving approximately 750 students, realized it was time to upgrade their auditorium AV system they chose LEA Professional to give them reliable amplifier power within an affordable package.

Local AV systems integrator Sight + Sound Technologies was sub-contracted in to help Ridgeview Classical with a sound system upgrade within the school’s main auditorium. The project was actually started a few months earlier but was running over budget, and school managers wanted a re-look at the project to see if cost-saving adjustments could be made.

“The original estimates only included equipment costs, not labor, and the school had a strict budget they needed to adhere to, but of course, quality and usability were still important,” said Kris Johnson, Chief Operating Officer, Sight + Sound Technologies. “So, we ended up working with the system designer to value engineer the project and come up with a solution that would still accomplish the school’s performance goals, and save some money.”


The auditorium, which seats about 350, is a multi-use space used for various meetings, presentations, events, and announcements, as well as for entertainment and musical productions. Within the auditorium, there are four EAW MKD Series speakers and a set of delay and side-fill speakers. Johnson explained that the team worked to keep as much of the original system as possible, but an opportunity for cost savings was identified within the power amplifier selection.

Johnson and the team looked to audio amplifiers from LEA Professional and found the power ratings, frequency response, and connectivity options they needed at a price point that fit the school’s budget. The four main speakers are now powered by a 704D Connect Series amplifier, and a 354D Connect Series amplifier powers the fill system. A Dante audio network connects the whole system.

The Dante Connect Series amplifiers are perfectly suited for small- to medium-scale installations. This range of two-, four-, and eight-channel amplifiers feature direct HiZ (70V or 100V) or LoZ, selectable by channel. And with three ways to connect, system designers can engage the built-in Wi-Fi access point, connect to the venue’s Wi-Fi, or use the FAST Ethernet to connect to any local area network via Cat5 or Cat6 cable. The Dante Connect Series also features analog inputs and Dante inputs and external I/O control for remote on/off and fault monitoring.

“We’ve done quite a few projects with the LEA amps, and they’ve all been great. We trust that LEA is going to hit the mark for our customers,” said Johnson. “We feel like we won on both sides of the equation with excellent price and quality. We’ve been pleased with LEA, for sure, and the school is enjoying their system.”


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