DPreview shared their tour story within Panasonic’s Yamagata lens factory:
The move to making fewer, but more challenging lenses has prompted a lot of investment in new machinery. Where previously the factory had a few machines performing the same process thousands of times, it now has large numbers of machines designed to create fewer elements but with even higher precision. Interestingly, although the factory can manufacture most of the components for a complete lens, not all of the company’s lenses are built in Yamagata.
Having been rushed through the factory, there was one area we weren’t allowed to visit. This is essentially a mirror-image of the areas I was shown, but all working for another, unspecified client. Something to consider, next time you see the phrase ‘Made in Japan’ on a lens you weren’t expecting to see it on.