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Yamaha Opens New USD 100 Million Innovation Center At Its Japanese Headquarters

Yamaha has been at the forefront of the professional audio industry for many decades. The corporation is committed to maintaining this position and, to achieve this, it has opened a brand new, USD 100 million Innovation Center at its headquarters in Hamamatsu, Japan.

Designed to accelerate pan-Yamaha development of a wide range of audio-related products, the major project has brought together engineers who used to be located in different buildings inside and outside the Yamaha Corporation HQ. Originally planned a number of years ago, it had to be postponed due to the 2011 earthquake. The project was reactivated in 2016 and, now complete, the Yamaha Innovation Center comprises three buildings. A new seven-story, 35,000㎡ engineering facility is complemented by refurbished manufacturing control and quality assurance departments.

The new building hosts engineers, including those from Yamaha’s professional audio, Unified Communications, home audio and its musical instrument divisions.

By assembling them together in one location, Yamaha is aiming to making collaboration between engineers from different business units and disciplines more streamlined, to enhance development efficiency. Complementing this aim, the new contemporary and inspiring work environment will boost creativity, delivering superior innovations and benefits to customers.

The Yamaha Innovation Center has a number of cutting-edge facilities to ensure that every Yamaha audio product delivers both the best sound and user experience possible. To ensure new products are evaluated both technically and subjectively, the engineering and testing rooms include:

  • One of the largest anechoic chambers in Japan, measuring 9m wide x 14m deep x 13m high.
  • Speaker testing rooms with the highest quality acoustic insulation.
  • Recording studios.
  • Vibration experiment rooms.
  • Ergonomic evaluation rooms.
  • Sensory rating rooms (for subjective product evaluation).
  • Reverb chambers with adjustable 0.3 – 1.6 second reverb time.

The recording studio is designed for engineers to bring in any audio I/O, mixing and processing equipment they choose. In addition a large session studio is also provided, with lighting and cameras.

The recording studio, session studio and experiment rooms are all linked with both analog and Dante digital audio networks. The Dante network allows for running remote session in multiple rooms, making it possible to simultaneously record studio sessions in different monitoring environments.

The offices of the new Innovation Center are designed in an equally collaborative way, with open plan spaces, free movement (rather than fixed desks), meeting rooms and a restaurant, where guests can spend lunchtime with Yamaha staff. It is all designed to encourage ingenuity and invention, accelerating efficient and flexible development of ideas and products for an increasingly diverse market.

If any inspiration from the past is needed, the new building also features Yamaha’s Innovation Road, a corporate museum which showcases over 130 years of development challenges and engineering passion. Featuring over 230 products, it includes an organ from 1887, the year Yamaha was founded.

“The Yamaha Innovation Center addresses three vital aims for our future product development,” says Mr. Fumiteru Takeda, Senior General Manager at Audio Products Development Division at the Yamaha Corporation. “The first is that, by giving our engineers the benefit of the best technical facilities, we aim to achieve even better accuracy with audio measuring, analyzing and testing for all of our audio products.”

“The second aim is that, by encouraging better communication, sharing knowledge and experience more widely and efficiently between engineers, we will push our products to the next levels of audio quality, DSP technology, audio networking and ease of use.”

“Thirdly, the new facility delivers a very cool, dynamic and enjoyable working environment, designed to inspire the best ideas from the creative minds of our staff. These innovations will all benefit our customers by making the next generations of Yamaha products the most powerful, flexible and user-friendly available.”―BCS Bureau

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