Learning More About Manufacturing Canon Digital Cameras

Learning where Canon cameras are made

Canon 24-70mm 2.8 L Series Lens with 5D Mark II
matthewleesdixon / Getty Images

In the world of digital cameras, Canon has been one of the top companies for many years, led by its well-known PowerShot and Rebel brand lines of Canon cameras. The Rebel line of DSLR cameras is one of the most popular units for beginning DSLR photographers, offering a nice set of feature and image quality at a reasonable price. And such cameras don't have a lot of professional-level photography features, which could bog down the less experienced photographer.

According to a recent Techno Systems Research report, Canon cameras led the world in cameras manufactured, with 25.2 million units annually and a market share of 19.2%. The majority of Canon cameras are made at the Canon manufacturing facility located in Oita, Japan.

Canon's History

Canon was founded in 1937 in Tokyo, Japan. Canon has several group companies around the world, led by Canon USA in the United States. Canon USA is headquartered in Lake Success, N.Y.

Canon's first digital compact camera was the RC-701, sold for the first time in July 1986. From there, Canon has manufactured hundreds of different digital camera models, including the famous PowerShot line of cameras aimed at beginning users.

For intermediate and advanced photographers, the company has sold more than 14 million digital single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras and more than 53 million SLR film and digital cameras since selling its first SLR model in 1959. Canon introduced the Rebel line of SLR digital cameras in 2003, another famous line of cameras.

Canon has been the industry leader with a few different SLR product innovations, including:

  • The first SLR camera with a built-in computer processing unit (CPU) chip, the AE-1 model in 1976.
  • The first auto-focus SLR with electronic control for the entire system, the Canon EOS 650 model in 1987.
  • The first digital SLR to offer high-definition digital video recording, the 5D Mark II in 2008.

Today's Canon Offerings

Canon currently makes digital cameras at its Oita Factory in Japan for both the SLR and consumer markets.

  • DSLR: The low-end of Canon's DSLR camera line consists of Rebel models, usually ranging in price from about $600-$1,000. At the top end of Canon's SLR models are the more prosumer level cameras -- a hybrid camera between the professional level and the consumer level -- usually ranging in price from about $2,500 to $8,000.
  • Consumer: For consumers, Canon offers high-end point-and-shoot models in the G and S model lines, ranging from about $300-$500. The Digital ELPH models are small and stylish point-and-shoot cameras, usually ranging from $200-$400. The A model lines are the easiest to use, running from disposable batteries and ranging from $100-$250. PowerShot fixed lens cameras that are in the $500-$1,000 range are high-end models that produce outstanding image quality and fast performance levels. 
  • Related products: Canon also offers compact photo printers, photo inkjet printers, large-format inkjet printers, digital camcorders, photo scanners, film scanners, and negative scanners. Some of Canon's high-end photo printers are very impressive models, offering the ability to make prints as large as 13 by 19 inches in size. Canon sells many digital camera accessories for its models through its website including lenses, batteries, AC adapters, battery chargers, flash units, memory cards, remote shutters, camera bags, and many other items.