Production of Canon EOS 6D: 40 Minutes per Unit

Live Report from Canon Oita Factory Japan by Kristupa Saragih

Photo by Kristupa Saragih

It was a luck that Exposure could see directly the production process of Canon EOS 6D at Canon factory in Oita Prefecture, Kyushu, Japan. One unit of the most compact and lightest full-frame camera in the world needs only 40 minutes to assemble and ready to pack in the Oita factory. An assembly chain at the factory consists of 15 tables combining men and machines in the working system.

Canon engineers in Oita took Exposure and other journalists from Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka and Pakistan saw directly the production process on Friday (2/1). Mitsuo Mashiko, the top man in the Canon Oita Inc., greeted all the journalists and accompanied them for lunch and factory tour.

Table number 1 in the assembly line is a place where CMOS sensor is installed. Other elements are assembled on the following tables. At table 7, screws are inserted and tightened automatically. The automation of screw installing is an innovation by Oita factory workers.

Worker at table 9 is assigned to final inspection, to make sure no dust and no defect on camera. Various inspections continue on the following tables until table 15 where EOS 6D is ready for packaging and shipment.

An unmanned vehicle like a walking rack containing various camera components moved and stopped automatically around assembly cell. The vehicle was also resulted from a motivation to create the automation of production. “Every single camera is tested, before packaged and shipped,” said Ishikawa Yasumi, Manager of Assembly Department.

The test is not only electronic test, but also function test both mechanically and photographically. Yashumi showed a video about automation to test the function of buttons on camera body physically. There was also a video showing test for light metering accuracy.

Behind the production cell of EOS 6D, the same production process occurs for EOS 5D Mark III, EOS 7D, EOS M, Legria camcorder dan XF series.