Better be priced at <$450
1. It starts at 24mm, a useful moderate wide range for many uses, something not many standard zooms do.
2. It has the excellent Sony 16 MP sensor, which should also allow for fast AF.
3. Ricoh builds excellent glas.
So all in all I expect this zoom to be a strong performer clearly beating DSLR kit zooms.
I wonder why they chose to release a zoom/cannon...? Not like this is a compact zoom with OIS that would might appeal to the prosumer (okay, maybe a stretch). I would think that with Ricoh's existing user base, a new fast prime would have sold a whole lot better. I would definitely be on the hook for a 24mm, 35mm, 90mm prime, or even an updated 28 or 50 with the newer Sony sensor.
Andrew, are you sure this is an electronic zoom?
I don't really get this lens, but then I don't really get the other zoom modules for the GXR either. To me, the GXR is a great little unit for getting fast primes mated to APS sensors in a very small package. I think the "lensor" concept helps make this possible. And the amazing Ricoh controls and things like snap focus make more of a difference for those types of lenses than for zooms.
If you want a 24-72 with a 1.17 sensor or a super zoom with a tiny sensor, there are cheaper and smaller ways to get them. Same for a kit-zoom like this even with an APS sensor (although the 24 wide end is very nice and fairly unusual). I mean you can get a Nex 5n and the kit lens for little more than this lensor alone. Ricoh has a good thing going with the GXR and the excellent 28 and 50 modules. I hope they add a portrait length prime and maybe an ultra wide (where a zoom could have some value). Maybe they'll sell a few of these lessors just because there are so few lenses available for the GXR, but I just don't see where the market is for this. But I'm sure Ricoh's marketing folks have an idea of who they'll get. And I'm a bit biased against zooms anyway, so I'm probably wrong. But I still don't get it.
I'm sure there is some part of the Ricoh customer base that will find it useful. It seems to me that the pretty large majority of GXR buyers, at least in the US market, tend to be pretty discerning photographers who are somewhat less likely to care about a kit zoom. Particularly as an expensive after-purchase decision - not something that "comes with" the camera initially, which is how this type of lens is generally sold. Its not like the casual photographer is gonna walk into a camera shop in the US or Canada and have a salesman pushing a Ricoh GXR on you - if you want a Ricoh, you pretty much have to go LOOK FOR ONE! I know, I've tried! So not a lot of casual camera buyers - the kind who tend to shoot a lot or even exclusively with a kit zoom - are ending up with GXRs. Maybe they're sold very differently in Japan or other markets and that's where they plan to sell most of these zooms??? I don't know, but knowing what I know about how Ricoh is positioned and perceived in the US and Canada I have trouble seeing who's gonna buy these things. At least in significant numbers.Ray, I agree with you in that the GXR is, IMO, a great APS mirrorless camera. Forget the small sensor units. But I do think that for the GXR ecosystem to be well rounded it needs an APS zoom, just like all other systems (except Leica) have them. It may not be as popular as the A12s (and we assume future A16s), but it should be popular enough (within the small Ricoh universe).
With the A12 primes, the Mount unit and the A16 zoom it's a very flexible system. Add 2-3 more A16 primes and it's even better!
I'll probably try it, but I had actually already decided to use the Nikon V1 as my zoom / family / travel camera, and I'm really pleased with it. I doubt the A16 zoom can compete on focus speed and movies, both of which I'm appreciating for family use.