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The growing trend for miniaturisation has challenged the abilities of electronics manufacturers to accurately place sensitive, high-performance components without damage. Somewhat surprisingly it is conventional vision systems technology that has emerged as the answer to these anxieties. With the trend for products that are 'small and beautiful' gathering pace, the problem of accurately positioning increasingly high performance components is one that urgently needs to be resolved. Sophisticated components with relatively low yields, such as those used by the micro electromechanical systems (MEMS) and electronic fabrication industries, are just too expensive to manufacture to lose to poor assembly. Manufacturing industry has developed high performance vision systems to ensure right-first-time placement of traditional expensive components such as those made from composite metals or machined on multi-axis machinery.