Ricoh GXR with Leica module


Sep 19, 2010
Was quite tempted to get a GXR

A secondhand one, with A12 28mm module, was on a local internet auction site and sold for about 60-70% of retail although was only 6-8 weeks old.
The main thing that ultimately stopped me was the lack of a portrait / short telephoto as wanted it to be my main camera. I certainly like the imaqe quality I've seen.
Maybe, with Ricoh now buying Pentax, a K-mount module is a probabilty rather than a possibility? Hope so.
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Cristian Sorega

Apr 23, 2011
Ricoh has announced the GXR Mount A12 module today: Cristian Sorega Photography: Ricoh GXR Mount A12 Announced

Here are some of my thoughts on it.

- The probably biggest news in the press release and another first in digital cameras as far as I am aware are the two shutter methods. A newly developed focal plane shutter (1/4000 sec. to 180 sec.) and electronic shutter (1/8000 sec. to 1 sec.). This is big news in my view and the ability to either use a physical or electronic shutter makes this module unique and very versatile.

- Ricoh is using a custom sensor with very light AA filter and micro lenses optimized for M lenses so it should produce a very good image quality even with wideangle M lenses, this usually poses a problem on the RD1 and also my GF1.

- The MF implementation was a big concern since Ricoh announced the module because it was not very well implemented in their other modules (as you can read in my review of the GXR A12 28mm module). Here Ricoh has again listened to the complaints and feedback and implemented a sort of peaking function which works great on the Sony NEX cameras and enhanced the normal magnification assist so I am very happy to see this being implemented. MF should work very well with this and be even easier than using a RF patch.

- Another great feature is being able to not only to add the lens data in the EXIF information but also read this easy from an SD card, shame it does not look like it can read the lens information from coding on the lens but overall this should not really be a problem if you can store your settings on an SD card and have easy access to them.

- The lens checking device is a great idea, who else other than Ricoh would get the idea for such a simple yet very usefull tool, it should work great for the colapsible Leica lenses which are always a bit of a concern to mount on other cameras.

In addition to what you can read in the press release here are some other interesting details I got from Ricoh.

- The Low ISO 100 setting will be available but will suffer from lower dynamic range.

- In S-mode the camera can raise the ISO when set to Auto or Auto-High.

- You can set if you want the shutter to close or remain open when you power the camera off!
You hear this Panasonic!! I have mentioned this when I first saw the G1 at Photokina and it's still not implemented, Ricoh shows how to do this right.

This sounds great and I can't wait to get one.

I should also get more details from Ricoh in reply to my Q&A with them.

Cristian Sorega

Apr 23, 2011
Also if no sensor cleaning is included with gxr, it is a possible problem for lens changers. It is good to have more serious camera options:)
I think the ability to close the shutter when the camera is powered off should help with this, on all other mirrorless cameras the shutter stays always open for some unknown reason.


Hall of Famer
Dec 24, 2010
Brisbane, Australia
Drawing the shutter across the sensor when powered down is an interesting option and a typically practical solution from Ricoh. However, despite the misgivings expressed by reviewers in the early days of mirrorless cameras, the exposed sensor has proven to not cause any problems in practise.


Sep 14, 2010
I've been shooting a film range finder for a few weeks now, and am completely in love with rangefinders now - to the point where I'm strongly considering selling my Pentax kit, and buying a used M8 and a Zeiss 35/2. However that would cost me £2600, and I'd have no AF options as I would have to sell the K5 to fund the move - I'm a poor student!

However this sounds VERY promising, I've always been a fan of the GXR (my gf has one), but now this makes me like it more. I can kind of go rangefinder, have some nice AF lens modules (50mm macro and 28mm are perfect) all new for less than a m8 and zeiss 35/2 and with better ISO performance - I guess for £2500, I can have the GXR, EVF, 28mm, 50mm and leica M unit. Then save for glass and use the GXR whilst I save in the very long term for a M9 ;-)

Ricoh seems to have got it right with this sensor unit. Hmmmm how about another GXR body with built in EVF and old school styling, which covers for the extra size of this unit to the right? :D (me dreaming)


Jul 13, 2010
Sunny Frimley
This sounds all well and good but this M mount unit will be almost $700 and you can pretty much bet that it will equate to around £6/700 UK pounds and this would be WITHOUT the cost of a lens!


Sep 14, 2010
Very true Christi, but I think the GXR M mount should be seen as kind of like a new, seperate, camera instead of a lens unit - a cheaper version of getting a digital leica or epson R-D1?. Others would argue that the NX, NEX and micro four thirds cameras are a solution however the m4/3 2x crop can be limiting, and as photozone have demonstrated with their latest reviews of the Zeiss 28 and 35 biogons, mounting leica m glass on modern day APS-C sensors has its downfalls due to the short flange distance and design of 'older' full format lenses - discolouration of borders, vignetting etc. However the new GXR mount has in camera settings which can be applied, saved and loaded to correct these without the need of 6-bit leica coding.

So there are some benefits, and no doubt this is a fairly niche product, but along with the completely silent ( very cool) electronicshutter, but potentially it'll be a great body for street shooting and leica M users.

hmmm... for you Christi, and others with a pentax and GXR or who want smaller package, a GXR K-mount with AF support would probably be more appealing though, I'd definately get one to use my pentax primes if I keep my k5 and manage to get a GXR too. The GXR system still has sooooo much untapped potential, I'd love to see a k-mount unit, which would pretty much mean interchangeable sensor unit when better sensors come out :)


Bring Jack back!
Jan 11, 2011
Houston, Texas
Gotta remember that the unique rangefinder experience is indeed ... because it's a rangefinder!! Having used the m4/3 and NEX (even with peaking) with M lenses, the experience is not the same as a rangefinder (or as easy to use). IMO, manual focus with the rangefinder viewfinder is still the easiest and fastest way to manually focus a M lens. Gotta also admit that this GXR module is pretty intriguing!

The 2nd half of 2011 sounds like a great year for people inflicted with GAS! We've got the new Pens, new Oly lenses, new PL25, the NEX7, the A77, and now the GXR Leica module. Pretty cool!!!


Sep 14, 2010
The 2nd half of 2011 sounds like a great year for people inflicted with GAS! We've got the new Pens, new Oly lenses, new PL25, the NEX7, the A77, and now the GXR Leica module. Pretty cool!!!
Or bad depending on how you look at it :wink: haha. I have to say after a good few months with my k5 and lenses, I've finally caved in to getting a Canonet film rangefinder and I'm loving the rangefinder experience. I've been travelling lately too and the k5 and lenses are a little on the heavy side and micro four thirds is certainly getting better, so I'm thinking of getting an m8 and possibly a return to m4/3 (tried touch shutter and loved it so much!).


Top Veteran
Jul 11, 2010
Melbourne, Australia
@Armanius - you're right, there is something for every gearhead this year.

I am sooooo looking forward to this module. The minute my local dealer has it in his order list I am putting in for one. The DPReview samples look pretty good, and the lack of AA filter really has me excited. :2thumbs:

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