CNC Lathes came long way, Traditionally Lathes or 2 axis lathes come with X-Axis and Z-Axis only, these CNC lathes are able to do to turning, grooving, threading, drilling and broaching. Before 1990 most of these lathe machines came with tailstock to support the longer parts, and Hydraulic steady rests were very rare on these lathes. Most lathes came with conversational and macro programming options to create the CNC programs on the machine without CAM software. These lathes were made with boxway slides and were able to do bigger depth of cuts. Most of these lathes were with one spindle and one turret only.

  Modern 4 Axis lathes can do all the features what 2 axis lathes are able to do, also modern lathes are offered with multiple spindles, turrets, and hydraulic steady rests. These lathes can do a lot more including Milling, polygon cutting, Keyways, gear or spline cutting, and parts can be synchronized with sub spindle to keep the orientation of keyways or milling features. Parts can transfer between spindles to machine the different features.  These technological advancements made these multi-axis lathe machines very versatile. These machines with proper hardware and software options are able to deliver a lot of work at shorter cycle times. Cam software is required to use these machines to full potential. These machines can be bought or added with CMM probe to measure the parts while running production.