Mek Celebrates 25 Years in Business


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Mek (Marantz Electronics), is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Founded in Japan, Mek has thrived thanks to a relentless emphasis on quality and innovation. With a worldwide installed base of more than 8,000 machines, the company has a proven track record of delivering excellence in AOI around the globe.

Well known for high quality Audio/Video products, Marantz, then part of the multinational technology company Philips, developed its first AOI system in 1994. Developed to inspect PCB assemblies for correct component placement and soldering, the AOI system was designed for use in Marantz’s own factories. Proving to be a highly successful, cost-effective alternative to traditional human inspection, Marantz released its first-generation commercial system in 1997, the table top M22X AOI system.

Mek’s quarter century in AOI has been marked by a long list of milestones; pioneering 24-bit imaging technology from the beginning for maximised production yields, one of the first desktop AOIs in different sizes, the first AOI with 18 cameras and Z axis, the first Bottom Up AOI and the first Bottom & Top parallel synchronized AOI for THT and SMT. The ISO-Spector 3D SPI and AOI line was first introduced by Mek in 2011, and the most recent full 3D AOI systems boast Artificial Intelligence and the fastest programming times in the industry.

As technology has changed Mek has remained at the forefront. 25 years ago, AOI was only just emerging, its potential unfolding. Increasing demand for miniaturization of printed circuit boards and lower acceptance of issues and defects has fuelled the growth of the AOI market. More recently the 4.0 revolution and the move towards Smart factories has seen an increase in the demand for highly efficient networked AOI systems, and Mek continues to deliver.

Today the Japanese company has a global reach; European headquarters were established in 2002 and American Headquarters in 2014, supported by an established and respected worldwide distribution network.

The company is delighted to be celebrating this important anniversary and looks forward to building on the success of the first M22x. The Mek focus over the coming years will be to further develop compact bottom-up 3D inspection systems, inline THT AOI and advance Smart factory integration.

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