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Slow old site - pity

PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:16 am
by Tom Caldwell
I admit not to visiting the site for a long long time.

Not much to report. I bought a camera body out of the first batch of GR cameras that were shipped to Australia. Love it to death for what it is but hardly use it any more. I still have a working copy of GRD, GX100, and GRDIV having given my GRDIII away to a son. I also have a "full system" of GXR cameras including several bodies. My blood stream runs "Ricoh Red".

Nevertheless the brand is hanging in there by its finger tips and although the product is good it is very "niche". I needed an updated GXR body with good evf and a shot to shot buffer that was professional capacity. A great product half-made and apparently abandoned at the Pentax asset acquisition. Unfortunately I gave up buying dslr bodies 10 years ago and my then rather nice collection of lenses was and is of the EF mount type.

Maybe three years ago there was a lot of talk about "needing" a GR camera made with different focal length fixed lenses. Apart from the nonsensical implication that all these lenses might collapse into the GR body shape there seemed little common ground for just what focal length might be suitable. I did not even bother to suggest my own personal preference for an 85mm FF field of view lens of any practical aperture maximum let alone a fast one. Nor were my protests that the modular GXR series was Ricoh's best effort in actually putting this requirement into practice. No - the issue was a demand for a number of GR "cameras" each with a fixed focal length on board. We all know how large the 50mm f2.5 macro module was for the GXR and how physically large and how long it took to get the A16 zoom on the market. It was and remains a very nice module - far better than I had expected.

In any case in the absence of anything new from Ricoh and in the face of the silly requirements for more variety in the GR camera lineup I did what I always do in these circumstances - go and fix it myself.

I bought a Panasonic GM1 to try it. It is a very capable little camera - tiny smaller even than the Gr - in fact it is almost exactly the same size as a Pentax Q but has a high resolution lcd screen and a half decent sized sensor inside. The GM1 was and is everything that the Pentax Q should have been on steroids. Also Ricoh missed the boat completely when they did not fit the GRDIV out as a 4/3 sensor camera with M4/3 mount.

The result was I bought more GM1 bodies then more GM5 bodies. By mixing and matching lenses I can make them into separate cameras as was loudly called out for the GR. But as the lenses are part of a widely supported system I can draw down from a huge range of available lenses. I could fit my favourite focal length by buying a Nocticron 42.5mm (85mm FF fov) f1.2 lens which is also image stabilised. The GM5 has an evf and a shot buffer that I have never had to wait for.

What more do I need?

Tom

Re: Slow old site - pity

PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:47 am
by Blow-in
Hi Tom,

Good to hear from you. This site is dying on its feet sadly. Partly because technical issues made it hard to post for a while but mainly because nothing much seems to be happening in the world of Ricoh (for the sort of customers we are). I was a late adopter of the GXR (needed it to drop in price) but I agree with you and many others who own the system that it was a great concept that deserved further development and it would have kept Ricoh apart from the rest which has to be a good idea. Rear screen apart, these are very durable cameras so I hope mine keeps going for many years yet and much to my surprise, I use the A16 24-85 most of the time having been able to source a very cheap new unit in China (about £125 UK).

The digital world renews every 18 months so Ricoh users are confined now to legacy units with the exception of the GR (some rumours of a GR3.....??). So I suppose as keen amateurs we have to aim to take amazing images with last week's kit in a similar way to those who still amaze us with old film cameras?

Richard

Re: Slow old site - pity

PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:34 am
by Tom Caldwell
Yes it is a pity as the Ricoh product was and is good but the GRD and what followed are unburstable and I have no real need for yet another 28mm collapsing lens niche street shooter camera. The GRDIV was really about as large a camera that I would carry with me as a fashion accessory. The GR is just that little bit too large. And of course there is no mirrorless systems camera from Ricoh. I have finally cut the cord with the Canon dslr and in fact the M4/3 bodies can do just as well as my aging Canon 5D was doing - a case where the 4/3 sensor catches up on an aged FF one. :)

I have no ambitions to go back to dslr bodies and am still wondering why Ricoh thought it necessary to pour some more megabucks into having their own FF dslr gear.

Considering that M4/3 offers bodies form Pentax Q size to "quite large" - it is certainly a deep enough system to be satisfying my needs.

Tom

Re: Slow old site - pity

PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:55 pm
by nebus
the difficulty is there are so many options to post photos on these days - and this site takes a back seat to those where people will want clicks and 'likes' for their photos.
That coupled with Ricoh's slow movement on improvement (the GRII didn't wow many by having the same sensor as the GR I) and then mobile phones climbing ever closer to compact camera's performance.
Ricoh have made an announcement today stating despite market shift which is affecting all producers they look to be holding to their GR line, which would be great news to followers here >
https://pentaxrumors.com/2017/04/12/ric ... -business/

I still use and love my GR I (having had the GRD II and GRD IV prior) and it's my go to travel camera as opposed to my D800s and Contax 645 I use for work. Great sensor, great handling, and with RAW files it's still a winner for me. Hoping the next reiteration will inspire again (as Ricoh seem to have always missed a step with versions from the GRD series in incremental updates ).

And still happy this site is up here - thanks to Pavel and supporters !

attached is a a shot from a small side project I'm doing with plants when not shooting other things for work :) Shot with GR I +21mm adapter and single off camera Speedlight gridded.

Image