In May, we wrote about Sigma's new headquarters in Japan's Kanagawa prefecture. While the new four-story building isn't open to the public, Gizmomo Freak took a private tour of the new facility. Now CineD has toured the facility, giving us our first English-language look at the impressive building.

Johnnie of CineD not only got to check out Sigma HQ, he also sat down to talk about the building, the philosophy behind its design, and Sigma's latest technology with Sigma's CEO, Kazuto Yamaki.

The video below is nicely organized into chapters, with the first roughly half of the video dedicated to discussing the new Sigma headquarters. Sigma constructed its new building after it ran out of space at its previous headquarters. The need for a new building gave Sigma a unique opportunity to rethink its headquarters and how it wanted its employees to feel at work.

Among the first things you see when you enter the building is an incredible library with more than 4,000 books about photography. Yamaki-san observes that Sigma is supported by photographers and videographers and the imaging culture at large. He believes it's important for Sigma's employees to respect this culture to make the best products. The multi-level library houses the central staircase, and many employees regularly peruse the library. Understanding photography and its history allows employees to design better cameras and lenses. Sigma's employees never feel detached from how its products are used.

The new Sigma headquarters includes an impressive multi-story library that houses thousands of photography books. It's a place for employees to learn about the rich history of imaging.

Credit: CineD

The headquarters also houses a standalone room, which is in contrast to much of the building's open-concept design, that includes all of Sigma's cameras and lenses in a climate-controlled environment. The 'lens cellar' celebrates Sigma's rich history and is a great place for employees to stroll down memory lane. Yamaki-san also believes it's important to have a place to celebrate the effort that Sigma puts into its products. It's a place to witness Sigma's passion in a stunning, beautiful, peaceful location.

Sigma's 'lens cellar' showcases the company's cameras and lenses. It's a celebration of Sigma's passion for its products. Plus, it's stunning.

Credit: CineD

While the 'lens cellar' is dark and closed-off, the rest of the building is open and bright. You'll notice that there are a lot of large windows and bright spaces, so Sigma's workers feel more connected with nature. Sigma asked for three primary things from the architect it hired for the new building: to make the new office very comfortable for everyone so that Sigma's employees were happy to come to the office, ensure that employees could see and experience nature and changing seasons, and ensuring that employees are encouraged to communicate with each other and build an engaged workflow. Yamaki-san is part of the communicative workflow, too. He doesn't have his own office in the building and instead has a desk in the same area as Sigma's engineers.

The Sigma HQ includes numerous green spaces and large windows so that employees can feel connected to nature, even when they aren't outside enjoying it like these two Sigma employees.

Credit: CineD

To the second objective, feeling closer to nature, the new HQ includes a beautiful garden and a rooftop greenspace where employees can sit and enjoy nature. The rooftop garden offers a nice view and includes plants, vegetables and trees. The new Sigma HQ also includes an atrium where people can take breaks and enjoy fresh air.

Sigma CEO Kazuto Yamaki showing the difference between the 20mm F1.4 DG HSM (left) and 20mm F1.4 DG DN lens (right).

Credit: CineD

Much of the rest of the interview is focused on Sigma's new 20mm F1.4 DG DN Art and 24mm F1.4 DG DN Art prime lenses for full-frame mirrorless cameras. Yamaki-san also discusses Sigma's Foveon sensor technology and how the ongoing chip shortage affects the company. We have lots of coverage available if you'd like to learn more about Sigma's pair of new lenses.