Ricoh How do you like your Ricoh GXR?

Right. I understand and feel your pain. Once you've tasted of heaven, it's very difficult to step away...and accept something lesser. I think this is why now that I have my digital darkroom that I am back in love with photography. I get very much the same gratification and can spend almost as much time digitally...though the magic of developing a print is never going to be the same. I believe the trade off of not having to use terrible chemicals and feel guilty about pouring them down the drain is a worthwhile deal.
I've had mine for a few weeks now, and I love it. The important factors for me are image quality, ease of use, and discretion.

The image quality is superb. The aps-c modules produce very high quality files that are at least equal to current aps-c dslrs. The images are sharp and clear, and have no significant vignetting. When processed with Lightroom 3 the raw files are super malleable and I can pull lot of detail out of the shadows, although I find that the Sigma compacts and Leica M9 are a bit better in that department. Likewise, I think that the Sigmas and Leica have a bit more room in the highlights as well. Therefore it is more important to expose properly with the GXR, whereas the Sigma and Leica files have a bit more room for recovery.

The GXR is very easy to use. The rubber grip and design makes it sit very nicely in the hand, although the Canon G10 is a bit more comfortable for me. All the buttons and dials are in the right places, and important things like EV comp are a button's push away. The 50mm and 28mm modules are a bit lens-heavy, though, moreso than the Sigma DP1 or DP2. The grip is therefore a necessity and not a luxury when using the aps-c modules. Once you've customized the buttons it is by far one of the best setups for one-hand shooting.

Startup time and noise got me a bit, though. The GXR fortunately remembers the last focus position when it was turned off, and goes back to that position when you turn it on. This makes it fast to focus if you are shooting things at a similar distance to the last time you used the camera. But the overall startup time is slower than, say, the Canon G10 or S90. Fortunately it is way faster to start and focus than the even the Sigma DP2. Shutdown time is likewise immediate and fast, unlike the Sigma cameras that can take their darn time if writing a raw file when shutting down. The DP1's lens will stay extended for a number of seconds until the raw file has been written. As a tangent, I wish a feature of all cameras would be to retract the lens FIRST when turning off, and let the file write even with the lens retracted.

The noise of the GXR surprised me a bit. The lens extension sound is a quite scratchy with the 28mm modules, and the shutter sound is quite sharp. It's not an issue in most circumstances, but last weekend I was shooting in a silent art gallery, and every fsssszzzzhhhit of the lens was quite audible. Same with the shutter. The 50mm modules is actually a bit more quiet than the 28mm, which is a both surprising and a little disappointing. One of the things I love about the GRD III is that the lens extension, focus and shutter sounds are very negligible, and I was hoping that the GXR would be the same way. In fact, one of the quietest cameras I have is the Sigma DP1, which focuses and shoot with the tiniest click. The DP1 is even quieter than the much-vaunted Olympus XA, which makes a metallic 'spang' noise when it shoots. But it is as slow as molasses, desaturates at ISO 400 and above, and has a slow, slow lens. The GXR is much faster, better built, more versatile and produces more consistent image quality throughout its ISO range.

But these are nitpicks from someone who wants the fastest and most silent camera he can get. I shoot with the GXR all the time and sometimes take it with me on weight-critical trips and leave the M9 at home. The GXR and two aps-c modules weigh about the same as the M9 and one solid lens like the Zeiss 21/2.8. And it has autofocus and (crappy) movie mode, to boot.
Jeremy, I hope you'll enjoy yours as much as I enjoy mine. It's a great little camera with a fantastic lens. I'm planning to get the vf2 viewfinder for it soon. Hope to see some more of your pictures soon :)
I just got mine last week for the times when I don't feel like carrying around my D700.

After 5 days of use, I can see that it is going to get even more use then I had originally planned. I'm not ready to sell the Nikon yet, but I can certainly see the possibility. Particularly if Ricoh ever comes out with an APS-C lensor around 85mm, and perhaps one around 20mm as well.
Ricoh GXR as good as the X100, but different

I just got a Ricoh GXR (A12 50mm) and I love it every bit as much as the X100, but they are different. I like it more than the NEX-5 (sorry Don!). It's controls and menu are well thought out and the image quality is excellent. Here are some samples from my first 24 hours of use.

Join to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

f5.6, ISO200, 1/100 sec.

Join to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

f5.6, ISO200, 1/80 sec.


f2.5, ISO673(auto), 1/45 sec. cropped.
Christilou, I had been reading about the GXR on this site, and liked some of the pictures I saw here, including yours, and so I handled one at B&H while in NYC. I love the way it handles and the "Direct" screen for control. An EVF in on order. I'm sure it will help in some situations. I also like that I can shoot RAW and B&W at the same time. When I looked through the evf at B&H it impressed me as quit clear for an evf.
I don't think anybody is paying any attention to the Ricoh threads or to the GXR. Too bad, because this is a fine camera, different but equal to the X100 for IQ, and perhaps a little better in some aspects of the menu user interface.
I don't think anybody is paying any attention to the Ricoh threads or to the GXR. Too bad, because this is a fine camera, different but equal to the X100 for IQ, and perhaps a little better in some aspects of the menu user interface.

I'm paying attention. I just don't have anything to add right now. I'm enjoying the GRD III but am getting the "rangefinder" GAS and am excited to know Ricoh is working on a M mount module for the GXR. I think that could get a few people's attention.

Those of you with the X100 seem to really like it a lot. But just like the X1 and my GRD III your limited to the fixed permanent lens that's attached. Nothing wrong with that.

I think now I want a camera with that size sensor and will be looking at selling my DSLR.
Great B&W Andrewtee :) I'm hoping the M mount won't be too long now. I think the Ricoh's RAW files are better than the Fuji X100.

Do you really think the Ricoh RAW files are better than the X100? Can you link to some examples as I'm really looking forward to how Ricoh plans on implementing the M mount system.
I have found the Ricoh files much easier to use in LR3. The Fuji does great jpegs but I have had a difficult time with it's RAW files. Somehow they don't seem to easy to shape. I don't know how to post RAW files from either. If I export from LR they will be jpegs won't they?
Andrewteee, great shot with the A12 50! Was that in camera B&W or pp?
Christilou, I believe you are right. I don't think it is possible to upload RAW files. I could be wrong, but when you reduce them to fit the WEB they will no longer be RAW. Can anyone tell us a different story?
Great to see these responses on the neglected Ricoh camera page.