Which Ricoh GR?
Old 06-02-2016   #1
Devin Bro
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Which Ricoh GR?

Help me sort through these cameras if you would!

(No smart ass comments about Google searches, I work 14hrs a day and this is the 15 minutes I have to give the World Wide Web)

Recently grabbed a super cheap GX200 and love the layout, feels good, super light, and UI is better than any other compact I've used, I like that.

Also have a GXR with the S10 module, but not sure how I feel about the ergonomics yet or the lens as it's basically what I have in the GX200 (except I also have the UW housing for the GX200 So it's staying indefinitely)

I'm looking at the GRD II, III, and IV can anyone lay out the major differences in these models for me?

I've also been tempted with the GR/GRII but used prices are still more than I would like to pay, and getting one would mean selling something else to foot the bill. Is it worth the coin to get the APS-C sensor for someone who mainly does snapshots, social media posts, and an occasional 8x10 or 11x14 for family?

I'll likely be using a free editing app on my iPhone, so I'm definitely more interested in the opinions of the JPEGs over RAW, but feel free to reccomend a free/cheap converter for IOS!
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Old 06-02-2016   #2
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I've had GRD I, III and now have the GR (APS-C) for 3 years or so (whenever it came out).

Personally I'd save up and get GR or GR II over small-sensor predecessors. Even for the use you described, I think you'll see quite a bit of difference in the photos.

I'm sure you could benefit from Wi-Fi on GR II if you want to post on social media sites/apps from your phone, but even the GR has Eye-Fi Connected capability so you can control the Wi-Fi functions of the card and select the photos to send to your phone.

So in short, I'd go for GR or GR II.
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Old 06-02-2016   #3
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Of the GRD line, I've had the GRD2, and GRD3. I always shoot Raw+jpeg, and can't really comment on the jpeg quality, because inevitably I worked with the RAW files. The GRD2 tends to be the one least loved, because it was a big change from the GRD -- some felt that in making it faster etc, the jpegs especially lost the look of the original GRD. I've never had the original. I thought the GRD2 was a fine camera, but prefer the GRD3 because it was better in low light. I never had the GRD4, but I think the lowlight improvements and autofocus improvements would have been nice to have. I currently have the GR.

In short, I would get the GRD2 if you get a really good price on it, but would look for a GRD3 and GRD4.
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Old 06-02-2016   #4
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Get the GRD IV! (<--inside joke)

Sug makes a good point re: the quality of the APSC sensor, but for the uses you are describing, I think you would be fine with one of the small sensor cameras. One issue to keep in mind is size: while the latest edition of this camera line is quite small, the GRD variants are smaller still, if that matters at all to you.
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Old 06-02-2016   #5
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I currently own the GR and a GRD IV.
Don't know a whole lot about the differences in the earlier Digital models, but the GRD IV has a stabilizer (Ricoh claims it's 3 stops but I'm not inclined to believe that claim) and hybrid autofocus over the 'D III. The lens and sensor are the same, I think.

As for the GR vs the GRD IV:

Two rather different animals. If your priorities are extreme DOF and macro (1cm MFD!), the GRD IV will serve you quite well. It also takes a pair of AAA batteries (power for about 30 frames) if your battery dies and you don't have extra batteries. Picture quality of the D IV is still nice although not really up to par with the new GRs. Hybrid AF and the stabiliser are welcome additions. Startup time is way slower than the new GRs.

The GR/GRII wins on image quality and will be able to deliver larger than 11x14. AF is bad in low light (endless hunting), though in my experience faster than the D IV in good light. If you want DOF then you'd better be prepared to stop down quite a bit due to the APS-C sensor. Then you run into issues with high ISO or low shutter speed... However I like the AE-Lock implementation better, and grid lines can be overlaid over the LCD screen (The IV cannot do this!)
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Old 06-02-2016   #6
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Devin, the IQ differences between APSC GR and the earlier models may seem unimportant given your posting/printing priorities. But since earlier models go for ~$200 and the used GR can be found for ~$400, that's a relatively inconsiderable difference for a far larger sensor where all those lil pixels can really breathe.

The I-II have f2.8 lenses, while the III-IV have f1.9; that was a real leap for low light use, given the functional iso constraints and the little sensors of 8-10mp. The III will be the best bang for the buck of the first 4 models, b/c the I-II are not much cheaper than the III, while the IV is harder to find, and its cost is likely to be close to a bargain GR to make any comparative sense.

But I have another gear idea, and since you didnt mention it, I feel obliged to point it out. I see GXR M modules @$200 clearance. Have you considered using your M/ltm lenses on a larger APS sensor, or is it more about the GRD pocketability? The haptics are going to be the same. A GXR with a 21 Skopar requires relaxed-fit jeans or a jacket, maybe.

Worth considering unless GR(d) pocket-rocket convenience is the priority. If it is, and you have $200 budgeted, go for the III, though it would be worth raising another $200 for getting a 16mp APSC GR from someone on RFF who already bought the newer model and needs to sell their perfectly fine GR.
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Old 06-02-2016   #7
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I've owned the I, the III and the GR.

If you only shoot black and white, get the I. Personally I think it sucks for color but it's good for black and white.

The III files are pretty nice in either black and white or color as long as you keep the ISO fairly low.

The GR is a big step up in image quality so if you can afford it, go for it. It adds a lot of versatility.
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Old 06-02-2016   #8
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Guess ill be saving,

Had not thought of the Eye-fi or Wifi bits, but yes, thats a big feature for a person who's only computer is a Iphone (5s) and most recently a Ipad (Mod2) which I use as a digital portfolio to share my snaps to coworkers friends and family. Looking to dabble in light post as soon as I find something free/cheap that is not going to load down my meager 16gb unit.

At the end of the day, how many camera's do I really need or actually use... I can afford to part with a few and possibly the Leica Im looking to replace in my Daily carry.

Robert, the GXR M module is tempting, but at that point I could just use the M4-2 that nevers seems convenient enough to have with me 100% of the time. Great for those very few moments I have time to grab it out of the bag and set up for a shot, but not the cargo pocket compact I need to avoid losing those "Kodak Moments"
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Old 06-02-2016   #9
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Devin - - I'm certain if you look on google and ken rockwell, you'll find the answers you seek

the ricoh is an awesome system -- I'm really intrigued by this one: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...C&Q=&A=details
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Old 06-02-2016   #10
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Ahh, but Blake I am lazy and strapped for time the next few days with the River Race I put on for our local Festival.

Maybe I can grease that old Digilux of yours my way, maybe your daughter would like a GXR?! Lol

I just love your old D3 bud, it's taken over and I'm not really interested in much else these days, I get my RF fix with the old SP I got here in the listings.

Just thinking and lusting out loud.
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Old 06-07-2016   #11
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Go for the GR or a GR II, although I'm annoyed at the premium wifi seems to afford it.

I owned a GR IV for a while and always regretted not saving for the GR.

I also owned the original GRD for years, went all over with it, including up (possibly the smallest) mountain / large hill in the Himalayas. It really was a pocket camera. Finally killed it on a Cornish beach but even with a lens crammed with sand, flappy bits that wouldn't open properly and one extremely careless, 21 year old owner, it still took great photos and I've missed it ever since I sold it for spares / repair....the buyer sent me a message a few months later saying he was 'just using it as is.' I still wish I hadn't parted with it.

It's a love thing I guess.
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Old 07-18-2016   #12
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The GRD III was my everyday pocket camera from 2009-mid 2013, whereupon it was replaced by the GR. The GR is in every way a major step forward in image quality. The dynamic range and sharpness of the aps-c sensor without an AA filter is leaps and bounds ahead of the GRD III.

Spurred by recent internet discussions, I took the GRD III out last weekend. I'd forgotten just how nice it felt in the hand, how easily it fell into the palm and took photos. But I'd also forgotten how long it took to turn on, and how long it took to focus. Also evident was how slowly it adjusted to bright sunlight upon turning on; a number of my images were overexposed because I was trying to shoot as quickly as possible, and the camera couldn't adjust fast enough. The GR never has such issues.

Even though your uses may be limited to online posting, just having much higher quality files may very well be of benefit to you in the future. As much as I am glad to have digital images from the last 14 years, I often think of how much better some could have been, had I used the best that were available to me at the time.

If you're planning to use an Eye-fi card, you can always shoot in dual raw-jpeg, and send the jpeg through to your iPad or phone for posting, while keeping the raw file for storage and future fun.
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Old 07-18-2016   #13
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I had the GR then the GRII. The GRII has incremental benefits (wifi -- which I don't use--, fast raw capturing in continuous etc.). The core of the camera is the same in each. If I'd really thought about it before buying the GRII, I'd have just kept the GR probably.

If buying used you might want to check the so-called 'dust issue' on the sensor. In the Ricoh forum over at Dpreview this comes up a lot. Never really an issue for me though....

Good luck...
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