German high-end equipment support masters finite elemente had a bit of a troubled decade during the 2010s, but the brand is back, with greater focus than seen in years. A few years ago the brand struggled with diffusion and creating complicated products that were initially well received but failed to find a big enough market, but it has learned from those errors.
The company is back to doing what it does best; its Ceraball and Cerabase line of equipment isolation devices, and its Pagode Master Reference isolation support rack system. The intervening years have seen development in materials science, realised in the new carbon-fibre platforms, and that will give rise to a flagship product line soon. But the entire finite elemente line is now deliberately and consciously streamlined.
We spoke to Luis Fernandes, the original brains behind the finite elemente line on the company’s history, its return, and the shape of the audio world today and tomorrow…
AS: How and when did finite elemente begin?
LF: We started back in 1997 and built up the brand starting with the racks and after that the Pagode racks of course. After that, the Cera accessories came along and things developed very well. However, my then business partner joined the company full time and wanted to do, let’s say, bigger things. He was very much into furniture design and didn’t quite understand how audio equipment supports differ.
That resulted in the Hohrizontal 51 system, didn’t it?
Among other products, yes; the Hohrizontal 51 soundboard was a large project for us, but it didn’t pay off because while the product was nice but the consumer didn’t accept it. We had to close the company because of that.
Why did the company close?
The racks and accessories sold well and those products made money for the company. But the development of other projects (including the Hohrizontal 51) took more money away than we could earn with the racks and accessories. So that’s why we had to close down into the middle of 2012.
What happened next?
A guy completely alien to the audio world took over the company and he tried to do some business. However, the products from that time very quickly developed a reputation for poor quality, and that company closed down in 2016.