Ricoh GR3 vs GR2
Old 03-12-2019   #1
ktmrider
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Ricoh GR3 vs GR2

I just preordered a GR3 with B&H but seeing GR2 for $400 cheaper. I plan on using the camera as backup for my MP240 on a trip around the world and to carry when the Leica is too much.

Now I looked seriously at the GR2 two years ago and ended up with the X70. I would probably be happy with the X70 but it was destroyed while hiking around Loch Ness back in September. I made the mistake of loaning it to my wife and she had it in a non water proof backpack.

Should I order the GR2 and save myself $400?
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Old 03-12-2019   #2
ktmrider
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Forget it. After reviewing GR2 vs GR3 specs, I have decided to get the GR3.
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Old 03-12-2019   #3
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Looks like you've already answered your own question, but for the sake of discussion: I think the choice between GR2 and GR3 depends on what you mean by "backup." If you anticipate that the GR would always be in the bag and effectively function as your default 28mm lens, then the GR3 is probably the right choice. If you see yourself leaving the M240 behind a lot in order to travel light, then, again, the GR3 is your choice.

On the other hand, if you will mostly gravitate to the M240, with the GR being a once in while thing, then the GR2 is fine. The GR2 is an outstanding camera. I moved from a GRD4, which I loved, to a GR (first gen.), and the GR has become my favorite and most used digital camera ever. Good picture quality, but more than that, highly customizable and it's so easy to take with you wherever you go. I am currently in the process of selling my GR in order to get a GR3 because I want the increased resolution and the WiFi/bluetooth convenience. But if the GR3 had not been announced, I'd be keeping my GR and be happy with it.
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Old 03-12-2019   #4
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To contribute to the discussion part. I use a GRII as a "backup for my Zeiss 28mm on Sony A7r, " " is because I sometimes prefer to just walk with the Ricoh in the pocket, instead of bagged Sony.
After the announcement I also considered the GRIII, but seeing how much usability that I actually find useful in II got stripped, I am not going to buy the III just for the sake of megapickles. That being said, if you were to buy new, i'd buy the III. I bought my II used because I don't baby my tools.
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Old 03-12-2019   #5
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If you don't mind the extra money spent, go ahead with the GRIII. It's an update of an already great camera so it's expected to be better. As for me personally, I already have the GRII, I like using it and I'm satisfied with the image quality. I see no reason to get a GRIII, especially at the announced price. Maybe in a couple of years when the price goes down...or when my GRII finally dies.
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Old 03-12-2019   #6
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What got stripped?

I'm happy with my GR II (actually was happy with my GR but sold it to get a Fuji XE 2 with a 28 equivalent which turned out to be a mistake and re-bought the GR II), but am curious what they took away.

I generally find cramming more megapixels on the same size sensor to not be a great thing but Ricoh usually doesn't do things without proper consideration.

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Originally Posted by Scapevision View Post
After the announcement I also considered the GRIII, but seeing how much usability that I actually find useful in II got stripped
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Old 03-12-2019   #7
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What got stripped?

I'm happy with my GR II (actually was happy with my GR but sold it to get a Fuji XE 2 with a 28 equivalent which turned out to be a mistake and re-bought the GR II), but am curious what they took away.

I generally find cramming more megapixels on the same size sensor to not be a great thing but Ricoh usually doesn't do things without proper consideration.
Flash and battery life. Personally I don't think the missing "exposure compensation buttons" and AF-ON button/lever are as much a deal.

The GR III's 24MP APS-C sensor has been around for many years (presumably Sony IMX271, which was announced back in 2015). It's proven. Image quality wise it still is the benchmark for all APS-C cameras - because almost all of them except the latest ones still use some variant of the sensor. So there really is nothing to worry about. It would be actually be surprising if Ricoh could fetch the 16MP one for the GR III, as it had been phased out long ago...
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Old 03-12-2019   #8
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So far, from the limited reviews I`ve read, the III does not seem to be much better than the GR II in low light AF speed or in high ISO. That`s a disappointment. I hope it is just pre-release firmware issues or reviewer errors.
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Old 03-12-2019   #9
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So far, from the limited reviews I`ve read, the III does not seem to be much better than the GR II in low light AF speed or in high ISO. That`s a disappointment. I hope it is just pre-release firmware issues or reviewer errors.
Autofocus seems to be a weak point for Ricoh & Pentax in general. The latest Pentax DSLR's AF module still couldn't fully match Nikon's offering some 6-7 years back. It's been "good enough" for many years.

The GR III seems to be their first try on sensor-based hybrid (phase+contrast detection) AF, which other makers (I mean, almost all of them) has became very good at. So...couldn't expect much. They really lack the expertise.
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Old 03-12-2019   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archlich View Post
Autofocus seems to be a weak point for Ricoh & Pentax in general. The latest Pentax DSLR's AF module still couldn't fully match Nikon's offering some 6-7 years back. It's been "good enough" for many years.

The GR III seems to be their first try on sensor-based hybrid (phase+contrast detection) AF, which other makers (I mean, almost all of them) has became very good at. So...couldn't expect much. They really lack the expertise.
I see... I didn`t know that. I`m using Fuji mostly and they`ve had their own issues with AF, but they`ve sorted them out over the last 2 years or so. I was hoping Ricoh could do the same.
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Old 03-13-2019   #11
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My hemming and hawing on gear drives my wife nuts and she could care less. Today, I made a list of features and prices for GR2 and 3, X100F, Lumix 100 Mk2, and Fuji XF 10. I even cancelled my GR3 order at B&H, ordered a Lumix 100 Mk2, cancelled it and reordered the GR3. As I said, I can drive myself nuts as well as other people.I wish there was a photo store in El Paso or even ABQ for a bit of hands on.

In the end, I stayed with the GR3. Can anyone suggest a small flash for the GR3? Its main purpose would be flash fill for outdoors.
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Old 03-13-2019   #12
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Flash? What's that?

Really, I haven't used a flash in a couple of decades. Don't even own one anymore.
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Old 03-13-2019   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktmrider View Post
My hemming and hawing on gear drives my wife nuts and she could care less. Today, I made a list of features and prices for GR2 and 3, X100F, Lumix 100 Mk2, and Fuji XF 10. I wish there was a photo store in El Paso or even ABQ for a bit of hands on.

In the end, I stayed with the GR3. Can anyone suggest a small flash for the GR3? Its main purpose would be flash fill for outdoors.
The officially promoted choice is the Pentax AF201FG. The Metz 26 AF-2 is a tad smaller (the smallest I think) and less powerful; the Godox TT350 is larger, more powerful and cheaper.

None of these balance very well on the GR3 since they were really meant for DSLR/mirrorless use but they all have decent power. All tilt; the Godox also swirls.

If you don't need TTL then there's more options.
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Old 03-13-2019   #14
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Maybe something like a Sunpak PF20XD if you want something small.
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Old 03-13-2019   #15
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Flash fill is the argument for the GR2. It would be nice if which ever unit I purchase would also work on the MP240. Flash fill is actually something I very seldom use but it is nice for portraits in bright sun.
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Old 03-13-2019   #16
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Until there are detailed independent reviews of the GR III, this is a pretty good overview. Biases admitted. My impression: the high ISO shots looked pretty good, the decreased battery life is a downer but not a surprise by now, the issue with snap focus not firing when because of a delay in autoexposure was a surprise (I haven’t tried it to see what happens in similar situations with my GR 2). Definitely more interesting to watch than the other videos I’ve seen where someone just sits behind a desk for 10 minutes fondling the camera and talking: https://youtu.be/aSKVDPkYnHg
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Old 03-14-2019   #17
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Well, I am still debating which digital to get for my trip around the world this fall. However, it is no longer between the GR2 and GR3. Now it is between the GR3 and X100F.

I had the original X100 and loved it. It was my only digital for years and went with me to Nepal and Peru and Central America. In favor of it is the viewfinder and the capabilities for flash fill and it seems to do that wonderfully. My main hesitation is the 35 FOV lens duplicates my favorite FOV on the MP240 and it is $400 more then the GR3. Also, the GR3 is newer and has image stabilization .

The GR3 is smaller, almost half the weight and the 28 FOV would add another focal length to the photo kit. At present, the GR3 is still on preorder with B&H and GR3's will not ship until Monday 18 March.
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Old 03-14-2019   #18
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That's a good video for one way of using the GR III on the streets. I appreciated his good editing so that the viewer sees the footage of him taking photos on the streets, and then seeing the resulting photo for each moment he snapped his camera as he walked around Cologne. Photos at 6400 look usable. The new "Monotone" (don't like that name) simulation looks to be a little punchier than the current standard monochrome setting on my GR.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sevres_babylone View Post
Until there are detailed independent reviews of the GR III, this is a pretty good overview. Biases admitted. My impression: the high ISO shots looked pretty good, the decreased battery life is a downer but not a surprise by now, the issue with snap focus not firing when because of a delay in autoexposure was a surprise (I havenít tried it to see what happens in similar situations with my GR 2). Definitely more interesting to watch than the other videos Iíve seen where someone just sits behind a desk for 10 minutes fondling the camera and talking: https://youtu.be/aSKVDPkYnHg
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Old 03-14-2019   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktmrider View Post
Well, I am still debating which digital to get for my trip around the world this fall. However, it is no longer between the GR2 and GR3. Now it is between the GR3 and X100F.

I had the original X100 and loved it. It was my only digital for years and went with me to Nepal and Peru and Central America. In favor of it is the viewfinder and the capabilities for flash fill and it seems to do that wonderfully. My main hesitation is the 35 FOV lens duplicates my favorite FOV on the MP240 and it is $400 more then the GR3. Also, the GR3 is newer and has image stabilization .

The GR3 is smaller, almost half the weight and the 28 FOV would add another focal length to the photo kit. At present, the GR3 is still on preorder with B&H and GR3's will not ship until Monday 18 March.
You still have plenty of time to figure out if the GR3 works for you before your trip.
As much as I love the X100 series, I would lean more on the GR3 due to its more compact size.
However if no VF or flash is a deal breaker for you, then the X100f might be the way to go.
If you want to go wider on the X100f, you could always get the wide angle converter but it extends the lens further out.

Check this youtube video out regarding the Ricoh GR, gives you an idea how the camera is used out in the street and he shows a flash that he recommends on the GR for about 70$
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSKVDPkYnHg

One thing to take note is that the X100f has been out on the street for a while now, while the GR3 is just starting to come out. So reliability wise and battery life, X100f is well proven and tested.

Funny enough, for my self I ended up buying an Olympus Tough TG-5 as my daily/beater all around camera over the GR or X100 series.
Cheaper, smaller with a decently fast lens and doesn't scream photographer while travelling.
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Old 03-14-2019   #20
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Originally Posted by ktmrider View Post
...
The GR3 is smaller, almost half the weight and the 28 FOV would add another focal length to the photo kit.
Those would be my reasons for choosing the GR3.
I have not used the current Fuji. After my GR broke, I bought an X100T as a replacement, but then bought the GR2 in part because of size, in part because I love the snap focus of the GR series, and in part because I preferred the high ISO images over the X100T (which admittedly is not the current model).
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Old 03-15-2019   #21
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Well, B&H is expecting a shipment of GR3 on Monday March 18. I have placed my order on hold as I would like to play with one in a store before having to spend $25-40 on return shipping if I decide it is not for me. I will not be leaving on my RTW trip until late September so I have lots of time.

I am even thinking of carrying one of my film Leica's as a backup to the MP240. It makes my kit a bit heavier but can of course use the same lenses as the MP240.

I would love to hear reports from people here who ordered the GR3 what they think of the camera once it is in hand.
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Old 03-15-2019   #22
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Flash and battery life. Personally I don't think the missing "exposure compensation buttons" and AF-ON button/lever are as much a deal.
for me personally the exposure lock button is the third most used button after the power and shutter buttons. I could live with the directional buttons deleted or the screen getting ****tier, but that one button is why I love shooting the GRII so much.
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Old 03-16-2019   #23
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Hopefully, this post marks the end of my indecision about GR2 and GR3. I did not feel good about dropping $1000 for a GR3 as the last thing I need is another camera but I wanted some type of small portable digital as a backup and to carry when the MP240 would be out of place.

I ordered a GR2 which B&H has for essentially $475 ($75 dollar B&H gift certificate). I figured the 16 mega pixel was good enough on the X70 so it should be fine on the GR2 and I really did want the built in flash.

Thanks to everyone for all the advice.
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Old 03-16-2019   #24
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$1000 is rough when you're not excited. Good luck with the GR II. It will feel as good as the X70 (in usage) while being lighter and smaller.
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Old 03-16-2019   #25
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Here is a review of the Ricoh GR III

https://www.ephotozine.com/article/r...l-review-33276
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Old 03-16-2019   #26
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Thanks for that link, b.

Looking at their list of "cons" I mostly shrug my shoulders and I'm guessing many if not most RFFers do the same:
  • Doesn't offer 4K video recording - don't care
  • Poor video quality (and options) - don't care
  • Doesn't offer tilting screen - hip shot when necessary
  • Fixed focal length is not for everyone - but if it IS for you....
  • Short battery life - bring another battery (!)
To me, this makes the "pro" side of the ledger quite attractive.
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Old 03-16-2019   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktmrider View Post
Hopefully, this post marks the end of my indecision about GR2 and GR3. I did not feel good about dropping $1000 for a GR3 as the last thing I need is another camera but I wanted some type of small portable digital as a backup and to carry when the MP240 would be out of place.

I ordered a GR2 which B&H has for essentially $475 ($75 dollar B&H gift certificate). I figured the 16 mega pixel was good enough on the X70 so it should be fine on the GR2 and I really did want the built in flash.

Thanks to everyone for all the advice.

I think you made the right choice. Saved a fistful of money and you will have an excellent backup... and built in flash can very useful. You will end up using the GR2 more than you think!
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Old 03-16-2019   #28
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I was really tempted to get the GR3 but remembering that the X70 worked just fine with 16 megapixels and that I never needed a optical viewfinder with it (walked over two hundred miles across England on the C2C eighteen months ago), the GR2 should work just fine.

If my wife had not destroyed the X70 I would not be in the market. She offered to pay for its replacement (when we pulled the ruined X70 from her pack) but I said forget it. I wonder if I should remind her of her offer from six months ago.

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Old 03-17-2019   #29
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I think you will be happy with the results you get from the GRII. It's a different system from the Fuji so remember to give yourself some adjustment time. Once you get used to how the camera handles and operates, I believe you'll be more than satisfied. And even though I never use it, it does have a flash built into it.
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