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A Look Inside Chonburi

Sony’s Chomburi factory in Thailand is a busy place and a place that plays a huge role in the company’s ongoing success in the interchangeable lens business. In Chonburi, α7R II cameras are assembled by hand, lenses are built and tested and proprietary technology and techniques ensure that the gear that leaves the factory is up to the highest quality standards.

In March, we had a chance to tour the factory and meet several members of the team responsible for its success. While most of the factory is off-limits for photography, AlphaUniverse and a team of journalists had the unique opportunity to get a look behind the curtain.

Some of the highlights that we learned from the factory visit:

All α7R II cameras are assembled by hand in Chonburi.
All Sony G Master lenses are individually tested prior to being shipped. Every one.
All Sony-Zeiss lenses are individually tested prior to being shipped. Every one.

In presentations by the Sony executives the word innovation kept coming up. It’s not just because Sony is a leading innovator, it’s also because in this challenging business climate, innovation is seen as the key driver to grow the overall market.

Sony Vice President of Digital Imaging Neal Manowitz explained, “There's a lot of companies out there, Sony included, that are really innovating in different ways. That's really exciting to us, because that brings more people in, that brings innovation, and it brings market growth. And we want to drive that market growth.”

And, in an interview with AlphaUniverse, Kenji Tanaka, Senior General Manager of the Digital Imaging Business Group, said, “As many people know, two giants exist in the market but our goal is to become the overall leader. However, please note how important it is to grow the overall imaging market. Sony aims to push this growth by continuously developing innovative products.”

The Chunbururi factory is where the rubber meets the road. It’s where the goals established in the C-suite and developed by the design and engineering team are, literally, put into production.