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Just got a used GRDiii, and a question

Discussion in 'Ricoh Forum' started by wt21, Jan 14, 2012.

  1. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    Lots of settings here, lots of stuff to work through. I can see that the camera is highly customizable.

    The seller shipped it with an SD card that the camera refused to recognize. After formatting my own SD, then doing a bunch of shots, I tried the one he shipped with it, and it worked. I only bring this up, because it's now got me looking closely at any camera issues.

    First -- at first when I got the camera, and had it in "A" mode, it seemed I had to press the shutter twice. Once (press and hold) would focus. Second time to take the snap. After going to M mode, and also playing around with some other settings, it's back to firing on the first shutter press, even in A mode. What setting did I likely change to make this happen?

    Second -- when in auto ISO in A mode, when I point the camera to any dark or darkish scene, it's going to ISO 154, which is making for very slow shutter speeds. When pointed at a brighter scene it goes to ISO64. If I set it to auto-ISO high, then it goes to ISO1600, and I can manually set the ISO, but the Auto ISO seems to have two (very low) ISO settings only. When I first turned on the camera, it had been set to ISO400 manually. Could there be something defective here, or is there some kind of setting I'm missing?

    Third -- when cleaning the front element (it had a spot), I noticed the barrel has some play left to right. Is this normal?

    Fourth -- Although the shutter is silent, extended/retracting the lens makes a kind of grindy noise -- higher pitched coming out, lower pitched coming back in. Is this normal?

    The latter two I would have attributed to just "oh, this camera makes noise/has a loose barrel" except that the SD card issue and the auto ISO issue have got me a bit worried on the soundness of this camera.

    side note -- the body is pretty much the same size as my EPM1. The differences are a) the EPM1 then needs a lens, and while the GRDiii can fit in jeans pocket, the EPM1 cannot, once you attach a lens. The other thing is the GRDiii has a silent shutter, and is overall quieter than my EPM1.


    Any feedback/help/input on a GRDiii is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Hmmm,

    First - never encountered this - not sure what setting might make it happen. Now that you have it set so it does NOT happen, I wouldn't worry about it unless it happens again. If it does and you can't trace it back to any settings you changed, I'd be a bit concerned about it. It was probably a setting (although I have no idea of WHAT), but if it happens and you can't attribute it to anything you did...

    Second - I've never used this camera in Auto-ISO mode. I set it up so that I can change my primary variable (generally aperture in A mode) with the front dial, the ISO with the ADJ toggle at the top of the back, exposure comp with the vertical zoom in / zoom out toggle on the upper right, switch between auto-focus and snap-focus with the fn1 button, and switch between B&W and color on the rear screen with fn2. The only parameter I don't have basically INSTANT access to is WB, but since 90% of what comes out of this camera ends up in B&W, I don't worry about it. And it seems to do a very good job anyway, so I don't know that I've ever taken it out of auto-WB after the first couple of weeks of playing with the camera. So, I don't know if that's normal Auto-ISO behavior or not. But since this camera gives you a pretty different look at 200 than at 400 and at 400 than at 800, I generally like to control that directly.

    Third - yeah I have a bit of play in mine too - I suspect its normal.

    Fourth - The lens definitely makes some noise both coming out and going in, but it sounds very much like a mechanical noise to me, not a "grinding". Hold it right up to your ear and you should be able to hear stuff engaging and turning. If it still really sounds like griding, I might be concerned about that. Enough to take it to a shop and ask for a second opinion from someone who's around camera sounds all day. Not a silent procedure for sure, but if you can't satisfy yourself that its not grinding, I'd at least get a second opinion.

    On the size, yeah its basically the same size as the EPL3 too - with the lens extended its basically the same as the EPL3 with the 14mm Pany. But of course the 14mm doesn't retract...

    Good luck, have fun, etc...

    -Ray
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    THanks Ray. I feel better on the lens wobble. The noise has two distinct stages. 1) lens barrel extends, then 2) lens inside moves in some way. (it's reversed when closing down). The barrel extend is very basic. The second sound (some kind of lens or aperture movement) makes a higher pitched noise than the barrel extended, and sounds like a grating.

    This was a private purchase through FM, so I'm trying to determine if I have an issue here or not. Thanks for the help! Would love other's comments, especially on the auto-ISO.

    Oh, and the manual that shipped with it is Japanese, so I'm going to have to find the manual on line somewhere.
     
  4. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
  5. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    That description sounds very much like what I'm hearing with mine - I don't think I could have described it as well. I don't get a grating. But, yeah, the higher pitched and longer sound (at the beginning going out and at the end going back in) doesn't sound grating at all, the shorter one, like the lens or aperture settling into place could be described that way. when I hold it up to my ear it just sounds like a bit more of a mechanical engagement of some sort rather than just movement. I don't hear grating or grinding, but relative to the other sound of movement, I can see how you could hear it that way. I think you're describing something VERY close to what I'm hearing - without hearing yours I obviously can't say for sure, but within the limits of using language to describe sounds, I think you're OK...

    -Ray
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    OK. Sounds about right. Like I said, it wouldn't have alarmed me EXCEPT for the other issues.

    I found an on-line manual. If I'm reading it right, Auto-ISO (page 84-85) tops out at ISO154 (!!??) for the larger picture sizes, and around 128 for the smaller picture sizes. I've never heard of such a thing in my life, and makes me wonder what "auto ISO" means, lol!
     
  7. Landshark

    Landshark PhotoDog

    Jul 15, 2010
    SoCal
    Bob
    First firmware checking and downloading is here
    GR DIGITAL III firmware / Software Downloads / Digital Camera | Ricoh Global

    Never had any problems with cards so I do not know what that could be.
    I am like Ray never used the camera in auto ISO, come top think of I rarely use auto ISO on any camera.
    My camera is set up sort of like Ray's except I have one of my settings at ISO 400 and one at ISO 1600 both B&W Raw&Jpeg
    They all make noise with the lens movement and they all have lens wiggle.
    Good Luck
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    Thanks guys! I'm feeling better about the camera. Items 3&4 seem normal, item 2 seems like a quirk of the GRD iii and item 1, though unexplained, doesn't seem like an issue, and could have been the card as much as the camera.

    I'm on FW 2.1, and they have released up to 2.5. Any tricks to note when updating FW? Any gotchas to watch out for?
     
  9. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    I've not used a GRD, but every other Ricoh compact I have had also featured a very noisy lens when retracting/extending/zooming compared with Canon/Panasonic, etc
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Crsnydertx

    Crsnydertx SC Top Veteran

    758
    Jan 21, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Chuck
    Same extension/retraction noises here. I never noticed it before you brought it up. But if Ray says it's normal, I won't sweat it.

    I use Auto Iso High and get a variety of ISO's up to and including 1600. Not sure what the value of regular Auto ISO is...
     
  11. Landshark

    Landshark PhotoDog

    Jul 15, 2010
    SoCal
    Bob
    just make sure the battery is fully charged before you run the upgrade
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    Another questin for those in the know. Is there mich benefit to shooting RAW with this camera, given the small sensor. My plan is to use it mainly for B&W
     
  13. Landshark

    Landshark PhotoDog

    Jul 15, 2010
    SoCal
    Bob
    I always shoot mine raw-jpeg, honestly I usually just use the jpegs for the b&w but if I shoot raw/jpeg i get the best of both worlds if I really need the raw it is there or if I change my mind and want a color shot it is there in the raw
     
  14. Crsnydertx

    Crsnydertx SC Top Veteran

    758
    Jan 21, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Chuck
    Ditto on RAW + JPEG, although I believe the Scene modes (including the popular Hi B&W) save in JPEG only. Is that correct, Ricohphiles?
     
  15. Landshark

    Landshark PhotoDog

    Jul 15, 2010
    SoCal
    Bob
    some of them are jpeg only yes
     
  16. kyteflyer

    kyteflyer ~@¿@~

    Jan 31, 2011
    Newcastle, Australia
    Sue
    The HiBW is jpeg only, pretty sure the others are too. But if you want RAW + JPG and high contrast, just set up one of the "my" settings with it.
     
  17. trisberg

    trisberg SC Veteran

    251
    Jul 5, 2011
    New Hampshire
    Yes, the Auto ISO is a strange beast and I used it once until I figured out it was useless. Auto-Hi is a little better since it gives you some higher ISOs. With the new firmware (2.5) you can also set the target shutter speed which finally makes this usable. I think 1/60 or 1/125 would be reasonable shutter speeds.

    Enjoy the GRD, it's much more pocketable and lighter than the E-PM1 with a 14mm lens attached. You give up IS but gain portability. The newer GRD IV adds the IS, so if you really miss it you're only an upgrade away :biggrin:

    -Thomas
     
  18. Crsnydertx

    Crsnydertx SC Top Veteran

    758
    Jan 21, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Chuck
    By selecting the B&W mode in Image Settings and Adjusting the Contrast slider?
     
  19. Will

    Will SC All-Pro

    Aug 30, 2010
    England
  20. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    After about 24hrs with this, I can say that this is one of the most ridiculously controllable, customizable and fast compacts I have ever worked with. Even te flash feels like its quick to fire, thou I have yet to test it side by side with the EPm1. This thing is nuts, and I wish more manufacturers would work this way.

    I never understood or desired th GXR series, but if they are the same operation and control as the GRD, I can see why people would buy them.