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argghh my GR rant

Discussion in 'Ricoh GR (APS-C) Forum' started by wojconner, Sep 29, 2014.

  1. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    I just sent back my second Ricoh GR. This time it was a used body from lensauthority (they were great to deal with by the way). This one had a grinding AF motor that I don't think anyone would have picked up on unless they dealt with Ricoh most of the time. The first one had really nasty coma and I noticed that soon after it was accepted back by Adorama that they had a used copy available for significantly less then they usually do. On that one the coma was bad, real bad. All whites looked like they were glowing. Maybe coma isn't the proper term but whatever, the IQ was poor. However, I absolutely love Ricoh's and it's amazing that I had two bad copies in a row.

    Now that my rant is over I'm trying to figure out what to select as a new camera. I loved the GR and I doubt that a third copy will be bad but I did notice that I really missed having some zoom capability. Yes, having a fixed lens did force me to become a better photographer but since I'm taking a lot of active kid pics a zoom was helpful. I figured this out as I was using my canon s95. While I was decrying the lack of high iso and the the shutter lag that caused me to miss many street shots, I did realize that having a little zoom was a good thing.

    I'm guessing the only options for a camera body that's no bigger than the GR are: rx100(iii) if the AF issue has been straightened out, the upcoming G7x, the Panasonic GM1/GM5 with pancake and zoom in pocket or the J3/J4 with pancake and zoom in pocket.

    What I really would like, as I'm sure so would many of you, is a Ricoh GR VI with a zoom or with phase detection AF as quick as the Ricoh GR IV was.

    I don't know, I'm at a loss and part of it is because of having 3 bad cameras in a row. This started with a D600 that had a legitimate oil on sensor issue. I'm almost thinking of going back to film with an Olympus XA that I already have but I know that's not really feasible for the long term given the quantity that I shoot. Maybe I'll combine that with an iphone camera, who knows. Too bad the Panasonic cell phone camera isn't available in the US. Thankfully, these are all first world problems...

    So, anyways, thanks for listening to my rant.
     
  2. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    I'm looking at buying another camera to supplement my GR and X100 and am pretty much in the same boat as you, in that I'd like a zoom lens serious compact. Not too many fixed lens options out there with larger sensors.

    Considering the new launches, the options seem to be the following -

    1. LX100 (m43 sensor)
    2. RX10 (1" sensor)
    3. X-Vario (apsc)
    4. RX100 (1" sensor)
    5. Canon G1X (1.5" sensor)
    6. Canon G7X (1" sensor)

    ....and that's it. (Someone add a few more cameras to this list in case I missed anything)

    None of them float my boat, even though the LX100 is shiny and new, it has the same (or similar) sensor as the GX7, and after looking at a number of full sized samples of flickr from that camera, I'm not ok with the IQ. I'm the worst sort of pixel peeper and my other camera is a D800e. So, I've completely given up the idea of buying a walkaround zoom and am instead getting a wide angle convertor for my GR, and a Sigma DP3m for the long end (my requirement for a longer lens is restricted to shooting portraits). So my walkaround kit will include a GR that covers both 21mm (with convertor) and 28mm, and 75mm from the DP3m at the long end. I also have an X100 (35mm) which I'm not using as much ever since I got the GR.

    Even though the DP3m is not as portable as I'd like and the af is a joke, along with the extremely clunky silkypix workflow, nothing really comes close to delivering the IQ I crave in this form factor (https://www.flickr.com/groups/2220207@N22/). Also the price drop from $1000 to $600 is a great incentive as well, leaving me enough money to buy the wide angle convertor for the GR.

    It's not a solution for everyone for sure, but I think I'll be ok with this setup (I have yet to pick up the DP3m). Let me know what you decide to do!

    Cheers.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Chrisnmn

    Chrisnmn SC Veteran

    405
    Jul 8, 2012
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Chris Leskovsek
    LX100 is what you want.
     
  4. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran

    577
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    ^ that ... (I know it's what I want to complement the GR - )

    M.
     
  5. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Funny, I have a Nikon A (basically a "twin cousin" to the GR) and I love what I see of the LX100, but for how I shoot, I don't see having both. I shoot mostly around the wide end and if I have a GREAT 28mm camera, that pretty much gets in the way of me pulling out the LX100 for anything in the 24-35 range. I almost never shoot between 35-75 either, so I don't see the LX100 giving me much I don't already have a better version of. Although I also have an RX1, so I really have the whole wide end covered except for 24mm. For me to want a zoom compact, it would have to cover some territory at the portrait end too, at least 90mm, ideally 120, but anything in that range so I could get the occasional head and shoulder shot of someone at dinner or a party or picnic or something.

    I guess if you shoot a lot in that 50-60-70mm range, the LX100 or RX100 m3 might be a good alternative, but if you don't, I'm not sure I see the appeal...

    Edit - aaaarrrrgggghhhh! I was writing this based on the assumption that you'd want to have the GR AND some sort of zoom. Now looking at the OP more closely, I see you're interested in a zoom instead of a fixed focal length camera like the GR. In which case, I take it all back. An LX100 or RX100 m3 would be just great. Or, if you want a bit more zoom range, something like the G1X mkII or the new G7X or one of the first two RX100 models, which all go to at least 100mm. Or if you want some real reach, maybe one of the new "bridge" type cameras - the RX10 or FZ100, understanding that they're a bit slower at the wide end than the other options...

    -Ray
     
  6. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran

    577
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    Sorry for the confusion, I somehow watered down the OP's original question: I was recommending the LX100 (as good as the RX100 III is, it's not for me). I shall keep my GR, though, so Ray, you got ME right ...

    M.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Andrewteee

    Andrewteee SC All-Pro

    Jul 8, 2010
    Was your first GR used or new? You cannot trust that buying a used camera represents the brand. My GR, about a year old, has worked flawlessly. If you love the GR so much buy a new one from a reputable dealer like B&H and try it. If it works perfectly, then you're set, if not then move on.

    In my view the GR stands alone and no other camera can replace it (ok, maybe the Nikon A - after using both as a long time Ricoh shooter I prefer the GR; my own bias). There are a great many cameras that complement the GR, none that can replace it.
     
  8. Archiver

    Archiver SC Top Veteran

    618
    Jul 11, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia
    My GR has produced fantastic images from day one, although it has had a few electronic hiccups like wanting to format the card when it has already been formatted, and a bit of grit catching in the lens that was causing a grinding noise.

    In your case, the most likely candidates for a large sensor pocket zoom are the Sony RX100 III and the Canon G7X. If you are okay with something larger, the Pana LX100 looks great. The Pana GM1 with kit lens is excellent, but the kit lens is relatively slow compared with the very bright Sony and Canon lenses. The Canon G7X will give you more reach than the Sony RX100, too.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    Gentlemen and Ladies, thank you for the helpful posts. Ray, you actually hit the nail on the head. Ideally I would keep the GR and get a pocket zoom camera. I think that's why I went with the used GR - great lens but damaged motor. (FYI lensauthority was great to deal with on the return. The first GR came from Adorama and that one was just a bad copy, no problems on the return there either). The post was a thinkpiece and I appreciate the feedback. I'm looking for the 'perfect' serious compact that obviously doesn't exist. This may be a bad case of GAS while trying to remain fiscally responsible. Between a new iphone 6 (my 4s is slowing down) a new GR and a G7X I'm looking at about $1700.00 before tax and shipping. Since the phone replacement is becoming a necessity I was going to pare down the cameras and costs, but this may become an exercise in futility at which point I'll just say I'll take all of them'.

    In the background I'm also considering replacing my slightly used d610 with a d750 for the low light ability. I'm not a pro, I just shoot a fair amount of family and kid photos in bad lighting, both for clients and for my own family. So, while the pocket camera gets the most daily use the dslr gets the most available light photography and even though I don't charge traditional rates for those I know that they are meaningful to the families and thusly I try to provide the best quality. I also shoot pro-bono portraits for non-profits, but the dslr convo is really neither here or there. For pure enjoyment I love street photography and that's where the GR fit the bill, I just wish it had a zoom and yes, one that went to 90mm or more for it to be worth the extra size/weight.

    I keep coming to the same conclusion, I'll have to take a hit on low light sensitivity and try the GM1/GM5 for the ability to switch lenses between the 14mm pancake and a decent zoom.

    The E-PL5 looks like a contender since it's high iso shots seem to compete and beat the GR, at least according to the tests at imaging resources. But the shutter is rather loud and I tend to do a lot of close up street photography.

    We'll see what happens, but no matter what, it's nice to have these types of problems. They certainly beat real world issues ;)
     
  10. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Not to go too far OT, but since you raised it and you're the OP, that D750 is looking really nice, nicer than I expected. When I was trying to decide between the D610 and Df a few months ago, I was really going back and forth between the good light shooting with the resolution and DR of the D610 (but with reduced low light capability) vs the incredible low light capability of the Df (with the reduced resolution and DR). And I remember thinking, "if they could just somehow combine the two". Well, they may just have done that. I though the D750 sensor was going to be the same as the D610, but it's clearly not. After downsampling, the D610 was competitive with the Df up to about 3200 or 6400, but the D750 looks like it runs all the way up to the stratosphere of 25,600 in pretty close to lockstep with the Df. Which is pretty amazing because it clearly retains the resolution and DR of the D610. Not to mention adding state of the art AF and a tilt screen. If I'd have decided to go full frame a few months later, I think I'd have landed on the D750 too.

    As for street, though, there's nothing like the Coolpix A or GR. I prefer the Coolpix A mostly because of it's auto ISO setup which I like a lot more than Ricoh's and it's a tool I use full time for street shooting. But both are great street cameras with slightly different highly specific strengths and weaknesses. I don't think the EPL5 compete with or beat the GR unless you're just using a much faster lens than the Ricoh's f2.8, but since you probably want a lot of DOF if you're using snap/zone focus, you're probably not shooting faster than that anyway. I had an EPL5 and shot with the GR pretty extensively and I'd say the sensors in the GR and Coolpix A are a bit better than the EPL5 - not vastly better, but surely not worse...

    Good luck,

    -Ray
     
    • Like Like x 2
  11. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran

    577
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    To the OP: Just as an afterthought (I still think the GR/A *and* LX100 combo would be best - and in your case, the LX100 would most probably hit the spot) - if you think about something like the E-PL5, don't forget the E-PL7: better image processing (though same sensor - if you shoot RAW exclusively, it won't matter much), much better IBIS, better handling, and much better price (at least around here - it's considerably cheaper than the E-PL5 right now!): Even though I'm pretty clear about why to get what next myself, the E-PL7 could well be the PEN I was waiting for to actually replace the E-PM1 for day-to-day shooting. Even though everyone talks about the Panasonic offerings, I'd advise not to overlook this little gem.

    M.

    P.S. The E-PL5 *doesn't* beat the GR for IQ - even the E-M10 doesn't, and quite clearly so. The OOC jpegs of the Olympus cameras are very nice, though - maybe it's that you saw ...
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    Gents thanks for the great recommendations. Ray, you're right and I probably should have started by looking at what to do with my dslr. On the d750 I saw some samples on flickr and the poster stated that the high iso is almost as good as the DF while the DR is improved:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/samfeinstein/tags/D600vsD750/

    Here's a d750 review but it's a bit over the top and skips on some of the weaknesses imho: http://www.rossharvey.com/reviews/nikon-d750-review

    I would get the d750 but I don't know if it's worth the upgrade from a d610, but it is tempting.
     
  13. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    I'm borrowing an x100s for a bit. I can see why people like it and I feel as though I've missed out on two years of great photography with the fuji sensor but for street shooting I can also see why the ricoh has the following it does, handling and functionality. The iso 6400 doesn't blow me away on the fuji once you lower the NR. Also, too much menu diving needed to switch settings on the fly, at least when compared to the Ricoh and for someone that isn't familiar with the menu yet. Although I do like the x100s I'm beginning to wander back to the ricoh again lol. For the cost of the new x100t I could swing a Ricoh and a g7x, or be in the ballpark at least.

    This fuji is a nice camera and it's growing on me but I'll wait for the next iteration of the sensor and AF system.
     
  14. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    Ricoh GR on order. For street photography it simply can't be beat IMO. I considered the coolpix A after it's price dropped but with the AF firmware update, one handed operation and the fact that I already have a charger and spare batteries I'm going back to it as my street camera. Thanks for all the advice gents, it's appreciated. Especially about M4/3. When checking imaging resources and their reviews of M4/3 from the past two years it looks like they produce more printable files at iso 6400 but the consensus did not concur. Adding a notch in the GR column is the fact that I'll probably never make large prints of my street work bc I doubt I'll display pics of anonymous pedestrians in my home. If I'm staging a street scene with someone I know then Il'll just use my dslr. Anyways, thanks for the advice. I'm giving the x100s one more street try tomorrow if it's not raining too badly but it's no Ricoh in its handling.
     
  15. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    It's here and it feels like an old friend came home. Very happy indeed.
     
  16. MoonMind

    MoonMind SC Top Veteran

    577
    Dec 29, 2013
    Switzerland
    Matt
    :) Congrats - good choice, of course, and very thoroughly deliberated, too.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    Ray, maybe I should start a new thread but since we were discussing the low light / dynamic range of the new d750 vs the Df, here are some interesting results, both

    http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3742142#forum-post-54598228

    http://nikonrumors.com/2014/10/23/nikon-d750-camera-tested-at-dxomark.aspx/

    http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Niko...kon-D810-still-the-king-of-DSLR-image-quality

    Kind of glad I held onto my d610, saved me about $1k that I can spend on a lens.
     
  18. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Yeah, I saw that thread - even left a comment in it. It's what I always suspected, but when you've got reviews from sites like Photography Life gushing about how the D750 beat the Df in low light, I had to start wondering if there was something to it. But I think it's pretty clearly the same sensor as the D610 with a better JPEG processor. Who knows, if it drives the price of slightly used D610s down far enough, I might now have to add one of those bodies for lower ISO shooting. But it's not like the Df isn't real good there, so probably not. But there's something really amazing about the extra DR you get in that 24mp sensor in the D610, RX1, A7, etc...

    -Ray
     
  19. wojconner

    wojconner SC Regular

    47
    Aug 20, 2014
    Woj
    Glad I got my d610 as a trade for a truly defective d600. If I payed full price for it I'd be pretty ticked off about the discounts and the consumer image that follows the D6xx series. Gray market d750 is going for $1799.00. I wouldn't buy gray market nikon but man, the price is dropping quickly. Hopefully I'll be able to get $1200.00 for my used D610 next year.
     
  20. biglouis

    biglouis SC Veteran

    401
    Aug 4, 2013
    I have a range of cameras, including 2 Sigma DPs, a Sony A7 and A7r and an ageing GH-2. I also own a GR. If it came to a financial toss-up I'd sell the GR last. It is a fantastic camera. I've never seen the coma you refer to and my copy has worked perfectly from out of the box.

    I actually don't think at the price point there is another camera to touch it (especially as it has no OLP filter in front of the sensor) and it has more than decent sensitivity up to iso1600 in my experience.

    You have to accept that you are working with a 28mm effective fov but then you can crop quite heavily with 16mp. And I would add the WA adapter gives very decent results, which is more than you would expect from an add on piece of glass.

    Personally, if you are a photographer you should have one of these and despite your two bad experiences you should try again, is my advice.

    You can see many examples of use of my GR in my Flickr stream.

    LouisB