Ricoh GR update or competitor?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by acearchie, Feb 7, 2015.

  1. acearchie macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    Jan 15, 2006
    #1
    I'm a big fan of this sort of style of camera (large sensor, small, fixed lens) and I feel like I'm ready to take the plunge to digital after using a film P&S on and off for the last few years (mju II).

    I noticed that this camera is nearing two years old now as are it's competitors and I was wondering if anyone knew if anything new was on the horizon as I'm in no rush (film sitting in the fridge!).

    The camera is pretty good as is but I'd like to see what two years of tech advancement could bring to the table.

    Perhaps this is too much of a niche now and it's destined to be the last model!

    Any thoughts much appreciated!
     
  2. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    #2
    Fuji X100T: This one has been announced recently. I have its predecessor, the X100s, and I absolutely love that camera. My dslr (Nikon D7000 with plenty of lenses, 2 flashes and accessories) collects dust most of the time. If you love a camera that works like an old manual camera, or a camera with an optical viewfinder, look no further. Of course, you can use it in full auto, but that's not what it was made for.

    Nikon Coolpix A: I think this one is closest in spirit to the Ricoh, and there are some spectacular deals out there right now. While the camera is about 2 years old, it's still a very capable piece of kit. AFAIK it shares the sensor with the D7000, so I know for a fact you'll get great photos. I tried it when I bought my Fuji, and it feels very well-made, and let's be honest, who doesn't like black? If you're on a budget, and you don't care for a traditional camera, I'd get one.
     
  3. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #3
    Cheers for the suggestions!

    X100t looks like a dream but the size is the only turn off. The Olympus mju II i use at the moment is great as I can fit it in my pocket even in skinny jeans! Ha

    Definitely keen to get my hands on one and give it a twirl. Fixed lens definitely appeals to me and manual controls are an absolute plus.

    Maybe I can upgrade to a small case with shoulder band as there is still no chance of taking my 6d and lenses to a lot of places.

    OVF is super exciting.

    Since you've sung it's praises... What are its viggest turn offs?

    I'll have to have a look into the Nikon. I know the model but being a canon guy I've never really given them the time of day. Worth a nod especially with the word 'deal' being thrown about!

    Thanks for the tips.
     
  4. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Just get the Ricoh GR. They're brilliant, especially for things like street, candid snapshot stuff. Really easy to get up close and personal with the Ricohs, and they just about fit in your jeans pocket. Doesn't Daido Moriyama still use one of the old film Ricoh's?

    I don't see X100's of any generation as a real alternative. They are much bigger, as are Leica M's (which are really pretty big cameras nowadays), Olympus OM-D etc.

    The only real alternative to the Ricoh I can think of is something like the Lumix GX-7 with a 14mm or 20mm pancake.

    Personally I want a digital version of a Contax T2 or T3. Never going to happen though!
     
  5. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    #5
    You're right, it's too large for that. However, the size is right if you want manual controls for otherwise the dials are too small.
    Compared to a modern mid-level dslr (think Canon 70D/Nikon D7100), the autofocus is slower than those. But it's a lot, lot faster than any compact you know and works very reliably even if it is dark. There are some minor quirks in the UI, but the only one that I mind is that you need to press up before being able to change the focus point.
    Don't be dogmatic about the brand, Canon simply doesn't have a camera like the Nikon Coolpix A or Ricoh GR. Just to be clear, I'm not arguing against the Ricoh, you simply started the thread asking for alternatives.

    Oh, two more things: I forgot to mention the Sigma DP1 Merill (I used to have the first DP1). The image quality of my DP1 was great at base ISO, but deteriorated fast as you increase the speed. And everything about that camera was s-l-o-w.

    Secondly, keep in mind the focal lengths: with the exception of the X100/X100s/X100T, all of these cameras have 28 mm equivalent lenses while the Fujis have a 35 mm lens. I happen to strongly prefer 35 mm to 28 mm in most situations, but this is just a matter of taste.
     
  6. Team Timm macrumors regular

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    #6
    My two cents..

    I have and love the x100t...

    I looked at the GR as well but I personally prefer having a view/rangefinder than a LCD screen to frame shots. Yes it's a bit larger in size, but it's still compact and easily carried anywhere and everywhere. The 35mm is a dream to use for any occasion.
     
  7. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Put viewfinder (Voigtlander or Ricoh?) on the hot shoe.

    Try putting an X100 in your jeans pocket. No chance, they are much bigger than the Ricoh. X100, all generations, are good cameras, but not really competing for Ricoh GR customers.
     
  8. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    #8
    That's not a replacement for the hybrid viewfinder of the X100-series.
    No, but you can hang it around your shoulder quite easily. I agree that both cameras are in different size classes, but my pocket is already taken by my keys and my iPhone. Of course, YMMV and both, the Ricoh and the Nikon are great cameras.
     
  9. paolo- macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    There are several leather case/half case available for the x100, paired with a decent strap, I think you'd be all set they also fit nicely in a day bag/purse. Sure, the Ricoh GR is smaller but I'm not sure it's small enough to comfortably fit in a pocket. It's about the profile of an iPhone 4 but 3.5 times as thick.

    Especially due to the viewfinder and manual controls, the Fujis are really fun to use.
     
  10. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #10
    The X100t does look a dream. I'll have to pick one up next time I swing past a camera shop and really give it a good feel.

    However, I do think that I am pulled towards something that I can fit in my pocket. My mju II is not the smallest camera but it can come everywhere with me which is it's best feature.

    I quite often leave the house with nothing but a jacket and having something slung over my shoulder feels like an extra element but maybe it's something I could adapt to.

    The flash would be a big thing for me too. Any word on what it's like?
     
  11. OreoCookie, Feb 12, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2015

    OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    #11
    My X100s is in my backpack as we speak … I can only confirm this. If you like manual controls and/or the viewfinder, I think the size is a reasonable trade-off. If you're the type of person who likes to use the display on the back to compose a shot, though, the smaller cameras are better.
    Careful, these cameras are addictive ;)
    I may have to get a second one, though, because my gf steals mine all the time.
    In the end, that's the decision you have to make. And to fulfill my role as devil's advocate: are you sure you'd leave the house with your smartphone and your camera in your pocket?
    For anything serious, I use my SB-700 in manual mode. BTW, you can really use the flash effectively to fight against direct sunlight: the X100-series has a built-in ND filter, so you can shoot wide-open, at high shutter speed with a flash that is bright enough to challenge the sun coming from the back. The built-in flash is ok, it works, but as you tell by its size, your typical dslr's pop-up flash is more potent. In any case, I doubt the other two cameras are better in that regard.
     
  12. Nordichund macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Ricoh GR is a fantastic little camera of pure quality.

    I looked very closely but there were two things that stopped me from buying it. Many owners have complained about dust problems and as mentioned Ricoh should be coming out with a new model soon.

    However, saying that, you can pick them up quite cheaply right now.
     
  13. xav8tor macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    If you're willing to jump ship on brands, check out the Panasonic Lumix LX-100. It's 100 bucks off right now at major retailers. Small, sturdy, full manual traditional controls, and...wait for it... 4K/UHD video at 100mbps! I have a full frame Canon DSLR with all the bells and whistles, and a feeling there are many upcoming occasions where they'll stay in the bag and the LX-100 will get a workout.
     
  14. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #14
    Went to Jessops yesterday and had a play with both.

    The Ricoh GR stood out as the winner instantly. Controls seemed more intuitive and the size really set it apart from teh x100t.

    However, knowing the sensor is that much older kept the spark of the x100T alive although I definitely wouldn't be able to fit it in my pocket!

    The price isn't the issue as I have some cash I have to spend before the new tax year but I agree it's quite favourable at the moment!

    I think the best bet is to wait until April and see if they release anything new before then.

    However, having a big stand at CP+ and not even mentioning it seems to prove that that probably won't be the case!

    I suppose I could always try the X100t + nice shoulder case and take it back if it doesn't workout!
     
  15. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Only you can tell. The one thing I have learned over the years is when you get the right camera, you just stop looking and paying attention to all the others!
     
  16. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    #16
    I wouldn't overly fret on that, APS-C-sized sensors are great, and my »old« D7000 won't suddenly stop taking great pictures. For the most part you see the advances only when you push cameras to the absolute limit. At normal ISOs (let's say 100~1,600) you'll be just fine. As I said earlier, the only reason I suggested alternatives was because you asked us to!
     
  17. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #17
    Maybe I'm a weird one but I find part of the fun process of getting something new is having to do all the research before hand!

    It's almost like having the opportunity cost is one of the most fun things!

    That being said, in my mind (especially from walking around today and consciously thinking about what would work best) I think the key factor needs to be portability which really can't be beaten on the GR.

    It's an impulse fun purchase and not really necessary until towards the summer when I should have a bit more free time so I am happy to wait hoping for a new release come April (2 year cycle).

    That being said I wouldn't have come to this decision without your help so thanks a bunch for that!

    I'll be sure to post my purchase when I finally get round to it!
     
  18. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    Yes, I understand the research part, but when you do get the right camera, you just stop looking. For me was a D700. I still don't pay any attention to the newer Nikon models, the D700 is just perfect. I know DR etc are better on more modern sensors, but the D700 is just "right", it's great, does everything.
     
  19. jypfoto macrumors member

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    #19
    I'm a big fan of the GR, so much so that I've bought and sold it twice, and just bought it again. I ended up selling my x100t and replaced it with the GR. There are a few reasons why I'm a big fan of the GR

    - Snap focus mode, TAv Mode, and compact size.
    - I used the included wrist strap and carried it around with me daily.
    - Native DNG format.
    - Cheap price means I don't have to baby it like I did with the x100t out of fear of damage.

    Don't get me wrong, the x100t is a great camera. One of the main reasons I sold it was because of the price, not so much that it's an expensive piece of camera equipment, because it's not (I have FF cameras and lenses) but for the price I wanted to treat it with the white glove treatment all the time. With the GR while I won't toss it around, knowing that if it breaks it's only $479 instead of $1,299 makes me feel better. Having a 2 yr old and having to chase after her makes it difficult for me to stare through a viewfinder to frame shots, shooting it with the rear screen is more convenient for me. I have my big DSLRs for when I need to use, but I enjoy using the GR as almost a visual diary, allowing me to carry it and take pictures of memorable moments. The new electronic display in the OVF is really small and for me didn't provide me with any real benefits.

    Another thing with the x100t is that out of the box, it feels incomplete. Meaning you're going to want to get a better strap, then maybe a soft release, then maybe the lens hood, then maybe a thumb grip. Start to add it all up and you're adding another $200 or so to the price. The GR the only thing you might want to add is an extra battery.

    With the money I saved I also picked up a used Sigma DP2 Merrill. Knowing the flaws of that camera I'm prepared to use it in isolated situations (tripod, base ISO, still life) but for the $375 that I paid for it and the fact that it shares the same battery of the GR, means I ended up with 2 cameras for almost $450 less than what I paid for the x100t.

    In terms of a replacement for the GR, nothing was announced at CP+ and nothing looks imminent. I would get one now for $500 and enjoy.
     
  20. Razeus, Feb 17, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2015

    Razeus macrumors 601

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    #20
    I'm thinking about pulling the trigger on the Ricoh GR since the price is about what I want to pay. It'll be my main street photography camera to take the place of the X100S. The X100S is rather big, granted not as big as my old street photography camera, the D800 with a Sigma 35mm :p.

    It's second use would be for my family photography snapshots. It's so small, I can take it literally anywhere since it fits with ease in my back pocket and I don't have to have a camera dangling from my wrist like I do the X100S. The resale value for the X100S is a disappointment so my $1299 can probably get $700, so I flushed $600 down the drain.

    So I'm going to sell it, collect my $700, buy the Ricoh GR and the Fuji 23mm for my X-E2.

    I was going to wait for an update to the model, but I think Ricoh makes what and when they want to.
     
  21. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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    #21
    Good move Razeus. Have you thought about a viewfinder or just going with the rear screen?
     
  22. Razeus macrumors 601

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    #22
    Just going to rear screen it. Probably easier to get some street photos and drarw less attention to my self than bringing the X100S to my eye.
     
  23. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #23
    Cracking little review! I'm sold! I agree about the pricing and the fact that it just works.

    I still think the biggest thing for me will be the option to have it with me at all times! Seriously will make a difference.

    I'm going to wait until April (as Ricoh tends to have a two year cycle for the GR) and see what happens!

    In the meantime, have you got any pictures you are particularly proud of from anyone of the couple you've had in your time?

    You took the words out of my mouth.

    Don't feel too bad about the depreciation though... You've been able to use the camera for a fair while and I'm sure you've got some cracking shots in that time. Imagine if you'd been renting for that amount of time!

    Regardless, when you get it (this model or the next) be sure to share your thoughts.
     
  24. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #24
    Well I obviously lie to myself. I've just dropped a bunch of monies on a Ricoh GR as I saw a particularly good one finishing this evening on ebay!

    Looking forward to using it this weekend.
     
  25. Attonine macrumors 6502a

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