Technology moves at the speed of light, and that’s especially evident in the area of sound. Just in the last fifteen years, we’ve moved from CDs to streaming, digital to Bluetooth, over-the-air to on-the-phone.
In the marine world, audio systems are an important selling point for many new boats. These days, buyers are just as interested in zoned speakers, helm controlled volume and selection and connections to their Spotify collection as they are in the horsepower of their Yamaha outboards.
And the aftermarket in audio is brimming with companies and products designed to provide you with the highest quality of sound and the greatest possible selection of sources for your musical entertainment.
Ocean House Marina is an official Garmin electronics dealer, and we stand forthrightly behind Garmin’s subsidiary brand, Fusion Entertainment. Fusion began as a New Zealand manufacturer of auto and then marine audio systems (they have a lot of boats in New Zealand!) and the company was purchased by Garmin in 2014.
Fusion offers what we think is the best marine audio technology on the market, and offers systems that begin at around $200 and range all the way up to $700 and more. You should be able to find a Fusion system that fits your budget and your boat.
The Fusion unit installs on your helm dash and is responsive and easy to understand and use. It is also easy to transfer control of the unit to your phone, using the various menu screens to operate your audio system.
The list of features and capabilities of the various Fusion models is far too long to list in this blog post. Suffice it to say that any Fusion audio unit can play music from AM and FM over-the-air stations, from Spotify, XM Radio or other streaming source, connected via Bluetooth wireless to any source of music on your devices, and from USB drives plugged into the system.
But boat owners have specific requirements and needs from their audio systems, and Fusion fills them all. Here are the main ones:
- Zone control. If the kids are taking a nap down below and you want to listen to music topside, or, conversely if your family and friends are all down in the salon and you don’t want your music to be blasted topside to everyone in the marina … you need zone control. This is the ability to limit your sound system to one part of the boat. Or to play it everywhere. All the Fusion units offer zone control from the touchscreen.
- Top quality sound. Fusion technology utilizes Digital Signal Processing (DSP). DSP takes raw audio signals, converts them to a digital format and passes them through a processor to modify and tweak them to adjust for various conditions, such as the size, type and location of speakers and stereos, and echo and feedback optimization. The control and tuning resembles that used in concert halls and high-end theaters.
- Device Integration. Linking all the control and sound enhancements of the Fusion systems to your handheld devices is super-easy with the Fusion-Link app download. With Fusion-Link, you can easily control volume (in every zone), source selection, music control, zone customization, network configuration, and Apple AirPlay settings.
If you want concert quality music on your boat, with ease of control and access to all of the many sources available today, the Fusion system is close to perfect. And it is manufactured to IPX7 and IPX8 standards designed to waterproof the unit’s contents even in the marine environment.
If you want to hear what a great audio system sounds like, or discuss upgrading your boat’s sound system to today’s trend-setting best, stop by Ocean House Marina and talk with one of our audio engineers. Your ears will thank you!