Fusion – More than science’s Holy Grail
by John Curnow on 15 Oct 2013
In a world contending with major issues such as runaway energy costs, geometric growth in demand for it and global warming, modern era physics has been relentlessly pursuing cold nuclear fusion. Why the dedication to this zenith of man’s quest to hold the proverbial goose that laid the golden egg? If achieved at realistic temperatures, fusion will release massive amounts of power and instantaneously take out our love affair with fossil fuels. Fusion will provide a safe source for the human race, something its fission cousin cannot even try to dream about.
The all digital Fusion 700 Series in-situ. FUSION Electronics
Back a little closer to the everyday domain we all operate in, what do you get when you cross the best of thinking usually attached to companies such as the likes of Apple, Virgin and Sony? Then add in your own innovative ideas, technological breakthroughs and functionality advancements and what do you have? Simple - a Fusion!
Fusion Electronics the company has as an interesting story for its development as do its products. Without applying too many cheesy tags, you could say that interesting, innovative and considered are attributes literally fused into everything they do. And promise that will be the last one used, OK?!
Like many a great company, such as those mentioned earlier, the esprit de corp stems from the person at the top. In the case of Fusion, this is the visionary New Zealander, Sir Peter Maire. Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, knighted Peter for his services to technology in 2009.
Now going way back when, Peter studied Electronic Engineering whilst playing in a rock and roll band and hosting his own public radio station. At this stage, he also worked at building guitar amplifiers and speakers. This knowledge, passion and love of music would combine again (see, no obvious remark) later when he took over Fusion and would be the very essence of their approach to audio engineering, thenceforth.
After that particular segment of his life, Peter founded the Kiwi company, Navman, which designed, developed and manufactured marine navigation products. Navman subsequently went on to grow to such a point as to become a major global brand and today is part of the Altor group that houses brands like Navico, Lowrance, B&G and Simrad.
It was 2006 when Sir Peter took ownership of the Fusion Electronics, with the goal of reinventing the marine entertainment industry. Founded in Auckland in 1998 as a car audio brand, Peter saw that Fusion’s strength in this market would be a tremendous launch pad for further product development into previously unchartered waters.
Today, many of the Fusion team still harks back to the Navman days, including Chris Baird, who is the CEO of Fusion Electronics. He oversees the company’s automotive, marine and lifestlye divisions. The passion is well and truly imbued in the team to firstly design, then develop and ultimately market the best marine entertainment solutions in the world.
Accordingly, Fusion has an Auckland based engineering team who have challenged traditional thinking, leading to a number of world first innovations, such as their first major project after Sir Peter arrived. This was a waterproof marine stereo that internally docked a range of Apple iPod products with multi zone audio control. The result was that Fusion instantly gained recognition as being the forward thinking market leader that they had not only set as a goal, but also to remain as the key fundamental element of their thinking.
So to help ensure the entire planet can enjoy the benefits of Fusion’s toils, their sales operation spans New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. The advancements have certainly been rapid fire, and every year Fusion takes huge leaps forward.
One of these was the development of FUSION-Link, which really did add a new dimension in audio integration. FUSION-Link allows the audio system to be controlled via various marine Multi Function Displays and screens. It is now available on devices from leading brands, such as Furuno, Garmin, Murphy Instruments and Raymarine. The FUSION-Link App is also available as a free download to control your system over a Wi-Fi network.
Of course the Smartphone, tablet and phablet virtually rule the world these days. Fusion’s latest docking station, the MS-UNIDOCK, now caters for many of the most popular Smartphones, including Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S3 and S4, HTC One, Sony Experia Z, LG Nexus 4 and Nokia Lumina 920.
Chris Soeters, the General Manager for Australia said, ‘Fusion is a unique brand. We have developed an incredible following over the last few years, no doubt many thanks to the range of innovations we have bombarded the marine industry with, and our wonderful customers who have so eagerly adopted them. The most common question we face is, ‘What have you come up with now?’ There is no doubt that we have changed the face of marine entertainment and we have plenty more yet to come.’
Fusion’s True Marine entertainment systems have been fitted by dozens of boat builders as Original Equipment Manufacture items. Brands like Bavaria Yachts, Boston Whaler, Caribbean, Contender, Ebb-Tide, Fairline, Fontaine Pajot, Grady White, Lowe Boats, Mastercraft, Matrix, Monterey, Princess, Ranger Tugs, Regal, Scorpion, Scout, Sealegs, Stabicraft, Sunseeker, Tidewater, Viking Yachts, Whittley and Yellowfin all sport Fusion entertainment equipment to one level or another.
Clearly end users and boat builders alike have found great solace in the use of Fusion Electronics’ technologies, so it is no wonder that other industries are also seeing the power unleashed by Fusion. You can now find Fusion products as original fitment in the Caravan and RV markets, with market leading manufacturers such as Jayco, Lotus Caravans, Traveller Caravans, Kimberley Kampers and many more being part of the growing following. The same attributes of efficiency, robustness and user friendliness appeal equally to this market.
Other benefits that are the cornerstone of Fusion marine stereos are things like being able to use the product whilst underway. Large buttons and an easy to use interface on the company’s True Marine range are the essential ingredients for this. Talking of constituent parts, Fusion 600 and 700 series marine stereos use D class amplifiers, as in Digital. The benefit here is that the stereo has a greater output (4 x 70 Watts), whilst using less power, as the digital processing is more efficient and also creates less heat in the process. Naturally, both are very welcome outcomes out on the water.
‘The passion within the close-knit team at Fusion is the real driving force for our success. Every member of the team has a real impact on the products that come to market. I believe that this really is our strength and absolutely what sets us apart’, said Soeters.
Chances are you have literally heard of Fusion if you have been near or on the water, sailing, fishing, wakeboarding or whatever pastime you choose. If you have been at a boat show recently, then you will definitely have seen Fusion, too. Those little green aliens will be as prevalent in your mind as they are in that of a science fiction writer.
So if you’re thinking about a new craft or perhaps an upgrade to the existing one, don’t forget to fully investigate the one thing you really want to get right - your entertainment. For if it is about relaxing and making the most of one’s precious downtime, then you want to have the equipment that is intuitive, intelligent, cool and actually works in the harsh marine environment.
In the meantime, as the chase for the Holy Grail goes on, we’ll just have to rely on the biggest fusion reactor in our little patch of space. Now whilst you’re out there enjoying said reactor, the sun, you may want to have one of Fusion Electronics marvels to keep you company and provide the entertainment - seamlessly and reliably! From sailing to wakeboarding, fishing to cruising, there is a Fusion Electronics system to suit you. See www.fusionelectronics.com for more information.