Back to School with the BA-55

Everyday Uses for Roland’s Powerful and Portable Mini P.A.

By Richard Schatz


Roland’s BA-55 is a fabulous portable P.A. system that’s just perfect for a myriad of uses in the school environment. When you think about it, the need for quick and easy sound reinforcement comes up all the time. Lightweight and equipped with an integrated wireless microphone system, the BA-55 can be set up and ready for action at a moment’s notice. It runs on AC power or batteries, plus it offers two operation modes that are optimized for different applications: mono for speaking and stereo for music. The desired mode can be set automatically simply by placing the amp either upright or on its side. Hey, that’s simple!

To give you an idea how convenient this little amp can be, let’s look at an imaginary school day in the life of a BA-55.

A Day in the Life

It’s the day before school starts. Mr. Hanlon, the principal, needs to address the faculty with new rules and regulations for the upcoming academic year and discuss the events on the school calendar. It’s essential that his 75-plus teachers hear him clearly, so the music technology teacher suggests that he try the BA-55, the small, self-contained amplifier that the school recently purchased.

In almost no time, the teacher places the BA-55 upright on a table in the faculty meeting room, plugs it into a wall outlet, hands Mr. Hanlon the wireless mic, and everything proceeds without a hitch. Everyone can hear the principal clearly, and thanks to the BA-55’s built-in Anti-Feedback function, he can walk, talk, and even stand right in front of the speaker with no worries of howling feedback from the handheld mic.


One of Mr. Hanlon’s announcements is about a social mixer that afternoon that will allow this year’s new faculty members to get to know the returning staff. To add a nice touch to the event, he’s asked Mrs. Collins, the choir teacher, to perform for them. She’s a singer/songwriter in her off time, and she plays out often with her acoustic/electric guitar.

At the mixer, positioning the BA-55 on its side for rich stereo sound works great for amplifying Mrs. Collins’ music. In addition to the amp’s integrated wireless mic, there’s an instrument input for connecting her guitar, plus built-in echo/reverb effects that nicely enhance her already-beautiful singing voice. The BA-55’s stereo input comes in handy as well, allowing her to connect an iPod™ to play some background music when she wants to go socialize with the faculty. Amplified with the BA-55’s full sound, Mrs. Collins was a real hit!

Mrs. Collins was extremely impressed with the BA-55, and it got her thinking about how she could use it throughout the school year (not to mention picking one up for herself to use at her local gigs). One way is to archive the progress of her choral group by placing a wireless mic or two in front of the ensemble and recording the results from the BA-55’s rear-panel stereo output to an external recorder. She can also use the BA-55 to play pre-recorded accompaniment music through the stereo inputs.

Everyday Workhorse

Well, that was just one workday for the BA-55, and school doesn’t officially start till tomorrow! As you can imagine, a busy school year will present many more uses for this powerful little amplifier.

PTA night is always interesting in one way or another. When you have a need for group Q&A, trying to hear the questions is not always easy. With the convenience of a wireless mic to pass around, the BA-55 is an excellent solution.

Need some subtle sound reinforcement to help a string quartet or other acoustic performance project a little more with no wires and no setup hassles? The BA-55 is up to the task. Place the amp on its side to use as a low-profile stereo P.A., and then strategically place a wireless mic or two to get the best balance. This will provide natural-sounding enhancement that’s true to the acoustic quality of the instruments.


Weighing less than 20 pounds, the BA-55 is convenient to carry not only around campus, but to offsite events as well. And with the optional ST-A95 tripod stand, it’s easy to raise the amp up to project sound over large crowds. For example, when you’re ready to present the trophy at that fundraising golf tournament, the battery-powered BA-55 will provide perfect sound at the 18th hole.

A Sound Solution

As you can see, the BA-55 is a super-useful piece of equipment to have on hand at your school. This little powerhouse provides solutions for so many audio needs that it’s sure to be in demand all the time. In fact, you’ll probably have to schedule its availability well in advance of your event!

Watch the BA-55 video demo.

Roland offers a wide range of portable amplification products to meet your sound reinforcement needs. To view the entire lineup, click here.

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