My name is John Leaman. Founder and Owner of Leaman Technologies.
I’ve been passionate about audio from an early age—tinkering with all things electro-mechanical, always seeking to understand more, and finding the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches.
My mother sang, played the piano, and appreciated many kinds of music from classical to pop. I have an early memory of sitting inside a five-foot culvert pipe in the town of Wrightsville, Pennsylvania, listing to a transistor radio which ran on four AA batteries. I can’t tell you the song, but I still remember how I felt. I was captivated by the music—even with that little radio! Later, I can recall my father buying my mother a Marantz receiver and a pair of Acoustic Research AR-3A speakers. Wow. They made the records and the radio come alive! Later, I got some Radio Shack Nova 40 headphones. Amazing, being enveloped in sound (and they weren’t even that great).
Eventually, my mother sold the grand piano and bought a Fender Rhodes keyboard and Peavey amp with a 15-inch speaker, and it wasn’t long before I had wired that Peavey up to the Marantz to get more bass. We were in a large colonial house with a huge living room and I thought it was needed at the time. I was around 12 then—and more was always better. It wasn’t very Hi-Fi, but I was hooked!
Around that time a singing group came to our church once and brought their own PA system and microphones. They had a big reel-to-reel tape machine for playing the backing tracks, and I was blown away. They sang songs we’d never heard before, but we bought the record and I played it constantly.
Since then, I’ve never been satisfied with the one-size-fits-all approach, and since all engineering is ultimately a balancing act between various tradeoffs, it seems every situation no matter how similar to another requires careful study to determine the best balance of compromises for the application.
But like Click and Clack, the Tappet Brothers of Car Talk Fame (if you are older and listened to NPR some years back) said, “This show is not about cars; it’s about people.” I appreciate technology and enjoy digging into the principles involved in recording, transmitting, and reproducing audio— but, at the end of the day, music and words, and the technology we use to deliver them, are just tools we use to convey not just information, but emotion. Because of this, the fidelity or accuracy of how the information is conveyed can greatly influence the listeners perception. In the worst case the meaning is entirely lost, or worse the opposite of what was conveyed is understood. With that in mind, here are some examples of what motivates me: A singer saying they’ve never heard their voice presented so clearly; a church member who’s had trouble understanding the preacher, but now hears him effortlessly; looking at someone listening to a song and seeing tears stream down their face as they become immersed in the message being delivered.
For those who enjoy specifics, I started working at Clair Brothers Audio at age 17 and held various roles as a fabricator, setup and maintenance technician, and ultimately a system engineer. I spent several years touring, mainly in arenas and outdoor amphitheaters, with large stadiums and clubs mixed in.
I also have experience in audio for television production, working Front of House (FOH) and monitor or broadcast mix for variety shows, including individual speakers, large panel discussions, and musical acts. In doing this, I gained experience in modifying and adapting existing venue sound systems (like churches, gymnasiums, and theatres) to suit television production requirements, and in many cases, left those systems better than when I found them.
However, more recently, I began studying acoustics and the different approaches that work best for audio control rooms, theatres, gymnasiums, and churches. That led to some interesting insights which help explain why owners of many venues, churches, and multipurpose spaces are frustrated by their audio system, and in many cases their operators. Often it’s not actually the operator’s fault when the system sounds bad.
My greatest joy is seeing the light bulb come on when people begin seeing how rooms, performers, and audio systems interact, and I enjoy a regular diet of audio education materials from the pioneers to modern day experts.
Time for a Change
After over 25 years of working professionally with audio in some form or another—14 of them at a worldwide television and radio network) my wife and I decided it was time for a change, so we relocated to Atlanta, Georgia, and I began working in IT as a systems administrator. But at the end of my sixth year, a series of events led me back to my passion—audio!
At first it was a side hustle, but soon it became Leaman Technologies. My idea was to provide a one-stop shop for a special clientele who needed to build a relationship with someone who wouldn’t compromise in the pursuit of audio excellence, whether in mixing, mastering, system design, acoustical design, consultation, training, or even a conference room system.
My driving philosophy is to always provide the best solution for a situation, regardless of who makes it, or whether or not it is trendy. This means, of course, a close client relationship which encourages the asking of questions and an ongoing dialog which is about greater understanding, rather than sales. I believe that if you understand why it should it be this way rather than that way, it allows you to be more comfortable in the decisions you make. It is not enough to say this is how everyone is doing it.
I'm always looking for new and exciting opportunities. Call or click the Book Now button and let's get started making better sounds!