Ricoh My new (to me) 11-year-old Ricoh GRD iii

MiguelATF

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Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
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Miguel Tejada-Flores
Well, call me foolish for buying an 11-year-old camera with a tiny sensor, but after years of admiring from a distance the photos which Wouter Brandsma, Josh White (aka jtinseoul) and occasionally Eric Kim have taken or used to take with this little Ricoh, I couldn't resist when I found one in clean shape for a reasonable price. My first thought when it arrived was: damn, this thing is small! Compared to the 1st generation APS-C Ricoh which came out about 5 years ago, which I owned briefly, and which I thought was on the small side back then, the GRD is tiny. You can't really tell from looking at photos of it--

GRDiii.jpg


-- but the adjective which immediately comes to mind is diminutive. Actually, I'm unscientifically guessing that its dimensions may be close to the Lumix GM1 I shot with for a few years before gifting it to a good friend who needed a small camera. It's approx the same length as my ancient analog Rollei 35 (which however is notably thicker), and it's a tad smaller than my old Olympus Infinity Stylus compact. And it feels much smaller than my former favorite almost-pocketable digital compact, the Lumix LX7, although I believe the two cameras share the same sensor size (1/1.7"), the GRD's is a CCD while that of my LX7 was a newer CMOS. But, hey, those are technical quibbles....my real question (which I know is going to take awhile to answer) is: how does it feel? and what kind of pictures will it take?

The answer to the first question, so far, is - it feels very nice in hand. In spite of the tiny size, it seems to be more of a one-handed camera than either my LX7 or GM1 was. The LCD screen ain't bad either though in sunlight, it helps to increase the vividness of the display to the max. Here are a handful of my first two days worth of pictures --

The first, taken during a walk to the local Post Office, in the quasi deserted downtown of the small Oregon town I live in--

GRD_Little_Tikes(SilverEfexFilmNoir).jpg


On the way back, a detail of an area where smokers used to congregate (and apparently still do), near the local bus stop--

GRD_Urban_Ashtray(AnalEfex).jpg


One of the things I loved the most about my small-sensor LX7 was its macro abilities - somehow that camera always seemed to let me get closer to my subjects, something which neither the APS-C GR. nor the Nikon Coolpix A I briefly owned, were all that good at. So I'm trying the GRD3 out on a few odds and ends in my house -

This is the tiny head from an antique Japanese doll which (don't ask) currently lives atop a pencil & pen holder on my writing desk -- this was taken late at night, with minimal lighting --

GRD_Geisha_Head(VSCO).jpg


While this shot, of a strange candle I bought at a local bookstore (back in the days when bookstores were still open - alas, now in corona-time, they are not deemed an 'essential' business though, for some of us, reading is essential), was taken in daylight--

GRD_Dali_Candle(ColorEfexXp).jpg


Here is the photographer himself, in another available-light situation, wondering if the GRD's autofocus will actually focus where I want it to---

GRD_Autoretrato_14_abril.jpg


And finally a shot of my rural street, complete with my mailbox and Dead End sign--

GRD_Dead_End(ColorEfexVSCO).jpg


I haven't tried out the snap-focus feature which generations of street photographers swear by....but since there's nobody in the streets these days, I guess I'll have to wait a little before I can. All of these were shot in RAW, and lightly processed via LR6 and one or two plug-ins I often use.
 

sh0wtime

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Surrey/Hants border UK
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Adam.
i like the look of these but i'm not too keen on the fixed lens. i could probably get used to it but without the latitude for massive crops if needed then it wouldn't be for me.
However i'm going to go on DPR & read some reviews :whistling:
 

MiguelATF

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Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
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Miguel Tejada-Flores
A handful more today with the GRD3, taken on a clear, bright Spring day when everything is green and growing in the garden - including this broad-leafed comfrey plant -

GRD_Comfrey.jpg


Inside the small greenhouse, 'pony packs' are germinating -

GRD_Pony_packs_greenhouse2.jpg


Including two oh-so-tiny jalapeño peppers that one day, hopefully, will grow into large and incandescent plants -

GRD_Pony_packs_greenhouse.jpg


And the ancient Radio Flyer little red wagon sits waiting to be pressed into some form of utility -

GRD_Wheel.jpg
 

MiguelATF

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Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
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Miguel Tejada-Flores
The other thing I'm realizing or discovering, is that at lower ISO's, the GRD's sensor + lens can resolve images very nicely, with more than enough detail for my tastes. Like in this photograph - a 'spectacles selfie' - of my glasses, taking a break from duty, atop a wooden garden gate -

GRD_Glasses_on_fence(ColorEfex).jpg


I know a number of GRD shooters wax poetic about the benefits of shooting SOOC black & white jpegs, but so far I've been shooting RAW files and they are both easy and responsive to simple processing.
 

ricks

Veteran
A handful more today with the GRD3, taken on a clear, bright Spring day when everything is green and growing in the garden - including this broad-leafed comfrey plant -

View attachment 219283

Inside the small greenhouse, 'pony packs' are germinating -

View attachment 219284

Including two oh-so-tiny jalapeño peppers that one day, hopefully, will grow into large and incandescent plants -

View attachment 219285

And the ancient Radio Flyer little red wagon sits waiting to be pressed into some form of utility -

View attachment 219286
Made me think of Dr. Williams " The Red Wheelbarrow", always a pleasant memory. Thanks.
 

MiguelATF

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Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
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Miguel Tejada-Flores
I still have mine and actually prefer it in many ways, to my GR2

Cool.
It is still very surprising to me how much smaller the GRD feels than the APS-C GR I used to have. I mean, obviously the newer generations of GR's are not big cameras - but next to a GRD, they seem almost bloated.

I'm curious though: under what circumstances do or would you use one instead of the other?
 

MiguelATF

Hall of Famer
Location
Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
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Miguel Tejada-Flores
The other thing which GR fans always used to talk about is .... that they are cameras which lend themelves to 'one-handed' photography - in a way, like the simple essence of using a point-and-shoot: you just (theoretically) lift the camera up and click! off another picture.

Except, I never really did that, with my APSC GR. Not exactly sure why, but I suspect either I never quite mastered it, or I never got to a point where I felt really comfortable using it. So far at least, theough, the GRD3 is a different kettle of fish: on a number of occasions, I've simply powered it on, lifted it up and clicked away....which is what I did earlier yesterday afternoon, driving through the largely deserted downtown area of a larger, neighboring city, I saw something I wanted to take a picture of. And my car happened to be stopped - sitting behind other cars, also stopped, waiting for a Red light to turn to Green. So I reached out, powered the GRDiii on, lifted it up---

And Click! I took this picture--through my none-too-clean windshield--of an older 50's Chevrolet, being driven by a significantly older gentleman, who seemed to be just driving around, and 'cruising'.

GRD_Cruising_downtown.jpg


One-handed shooting....who knew?!
 
I've used a Ricoh CX-1 for over 10 years now, use it for camera projects, and took on vacation last year. It's very reliable, 10+ year old battery holds a good charge.
Navarre.jpg


It, and the Olympus EPM1, are the grab and go cameras.

Your camera is the step-up in the line.
Looking at Ebay: you have a real "cult camera", but for a good reason.
 
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agentlossing

Top Veteran
Location
S. Oregon Coast (the Northernmost-Cal of them All)
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
Except, I never really did that, with my APSC GR. Not exactly sure why, but I suspect either I never quite mastered it, or I never got to a point where I felt really comfortable using it.
Yeah, people who shoot the same kind of thing a lot, and have forgiving settings, use the GR one-handed a lot. A lot of the time, I want slightly more thoughtful process, but I have at least found that the GR III's highlight protection metering mode allows for reasonably safe fast shots one-handed like you're describing. It's fun to do.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
I'm curious though: under what circumstances do or would you use one instead of the other?
Its a mood thing. I love a CCD sensor, and will sometimes choose a camera with that, rather than CMOS. I don’t know why, but I seem to get better shots with CCD than CMOS. Its probably not even noticeable to most, but to me, CCD shots seem sharper and brighter.

Also, its very versatile and being as tiny as it is, is very useful in many situations. It doesnt mind low light, and it can do a slow shutter very nicely, as well as snap focus. Landscapes are a cinch, as are portraits.
 
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