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Kansas High School Gets Audio Makeover

Integrators partner to outfit school gym with Powersoft and Eastern Acoustic Works gear

The rack at St. Francis High School gymnasium includes a single Powersoft X4 amplifier.

ST. FRANCIS, Kan.–As the largest community facility in the small Kansas town of St. Francis, the gymnasium at St. Francis High School hosts sports tournaments, town meetings and local events, in addition to its regular school-day functions. So when school officials reached out to the Kansas-based integrator DK Audio Video (DKAV) for a new gymnasium audio system, they asked for a solution that would support a variety of activities.

“They wanted a full sound system upgrade and they told us to ‘dream big’,” DKAV Owner Lucas Lafferty recalls.

Lafferty recommended a Powersoft amplifier. “I thought it would have the ideal combination of features: clear sound, easy-to-use operation, and strong built-in DSP processing,” he said. The plan was to use a Powersoft X4 amplifier to drive two Eastern Acoustic Works QX326 two-way loudspeakers and two EAW SB250z subwoofers. DKAV worked with the Denver division of audio manufacturers’ representative Marshank Group to select the loudspeakers, subwoofers, and amplifier.

The scoreboard at St. Francis High School gymnasium, with EAW loudspeakers beside it.

The 40-foot domed ceiling and solid brick walls presented a challenge during the design and installation phase, as the loudspeaker and subwoofers would be suspended in two pairs, approximately 20-feet high. Lafferty assured that they were “to aim the speakers at ear level as much as possible and to avoid excessive bounce back.”

The Powersoft X4 is situated in an upstairs room along with a Juice Goose remote power sequencer. Powersoft’s Armonía DSP software was used to tune and test the overall system, eliminating the need for separate, standalone EQs and compressors. Depending on the event, a portable mixing board can be plugged into any of the three tie-in locations on the floor of the gymnasium.

According to Lafferty, since the installation was completed, the variety of events taking place in the gym has grown to include weddings and concerts.