English pronunciations of Japanese words

This page attempts to give near approximations to the Japanese pronunciations of company names like Nikon or Hakko, or Japanese-derived words like sika.

Hakko, a company which makes soldering equipment, is pronounced hack-oh, not hark-ko. The Japanese name, 白光はっこう, means white light.

Makita is pronounced Mack-eater, not Ma Keeter. The Japanese name is マキタ. Makita themselves use the "ma-keeter" pronunciation in their promotional materials. However, the Japanese name is much closer to "mack-eater" or "mack it er" than "ma-keeter".

Nikon, a company which makes cameras and other optical equipment, is pronounced Nick-on, not nigh-con. The Japanese name is ニコン.

Samurai is pronounced sam uh rye, not sam your eye. The Japanese name is さむらい. The "sam your eye" pronunciation is mostly used in the United Kingdom. The American pronunciation "sam ur rye" is closer to the original Japanese.

Sika, a kind of deer, is pronounced she-car, not seeker. The Japanese name, 鹿しか, means deer.

Sony, a company which makes electronics, is pronounced "sonic" without the final k sound, not so-knee. The Japanese name is ソニー.

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