The Ricoh GXR 24-72mm f/2.5-4.4 lens unit is the second of Ricoh's current GXR lenses. The What Digital Camera GXR 24-72mm review sees how it shapes up...

Product Overview

Overall rating:

78%
Overall score:78%
Features:80%
Performance:80%
Value:75%
Design:80%
Image Quality:75%

Pros:

  • Close-up shooting capability, very easy changeover between lenses

Cons:

  • A lot like an expensive Ricoh GX200, poor autofocus, no manual focus ring

Product:

Ricoh GXR 24-72mm f/2.5-4.4 lens unit review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£325

Latest Deals From eBay

Loading

Best Prices from Reevoo

Loading

At present the GXR only has two available lens units, the 24-72mm being the cheaper option. Unlike the 50mm f/2.5 macro’s APS-C sized sensor, the 24-72mm has a smaller 1/1.7in CCD sensor, with the quoted zoom range being an equivalent expression in 35mm terms.

At the wide end a f/2.5 aperture is offered, though this closes down to f/4.4 when shooting at the longer 72mm end of the range. Those familiar with one of Ricoh’s other high-end compacts – the GX200 – may be having a bit of déjà vu here, as the GXR is essentially the same camera when the lens unit is attached, albeit considerably pricier.

 Ricoh GXR review sample image 24-72mm unit

Ricoh GXR 24-72mm lens unit review sample image – click for full size gallery

With the GXR body relying on a zoom toggle to the rear of the camera, zooming with this lens can feel a little awkward at times as there is no zoom or focus ring on the lens itself, falling away from DSLR-like and toward much more standard compact with this particular lens’ aspirations. And with competitors’ compacts, such as the Canon G11, offering a more advanced build than this set up, the overall GXR concept has a lot to live up to.

Although not a ‘macro’ lens, the 24-72mm does have one of Ricoh’s great traits – at the wide end it’s possible to shoot super-close-up to subject, as close as around 1cm from the lens (more than the other 50mm ‘macro’ lens is capable of). ‘Vibration Correction’ image stabilistion also features to keep shots steady.

As per the GXR body, full manual control is provided, including ‘My’ modes for personal pre-sets. Similarly, ‘Snap’ focus mode is likely to come in handy – offering a prefixed focal length of between 1-5m or infinity when fully depressing the shutter. Up to 1/2000th of a second shutter speeds are also available, though capturing fast-moving action is tricky when coupled with the sluggish AF system.

 

Ricoh GXR 24-72mm review – Image Quality

With a 1/1.7in CCD sensor, the quality here is widely akin to a compact, but not especially mind-boggling. Based on the initial expense of purchase, expectation was high, but results failed to live up to those expectations. At this level it’s entirely reasonable that clear and detailed images should come as standard.

ISO sensitivity runs from 100-3200, though excessive noise-reduction softens images considerably. Images throughout the range don’t possess crisp sharpness. It appears to some extent that JPEGs are over-sharpened too as contrasting edges and grain appear amplified and chromatic aberration is visible towards the edges.

Exposure was accurate throughout, though the contrast-detect AF did sometimes venture worringly away from the subject.

 

Ricoh GXR camera concept further links:

Ricoh GXR camera concept

Ricoh GXR 50mm f/2.5 lens unit review

What
are micro system cameras?

Full Specification

White Balance Bracket:
Yes

Colour Temp Control:
Yes
Built-in Flash:
Yes, pop-up

Dust Reduction:
N/A (sealed unit)

Other:
No focus ring.Min focus distance: 30cm (normal); 1cm (macro)Max Aperture: 2.5-4.4Optical Construction: 11 elements in 7 groups
Focusing Modes:
CCD-based multi and spot AF; MF; Snap; infinity (focus lock and AF-assist)

Exposure Comp:
Manual (+4.0 to -4.0 EV in increments 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV), auto bracketing (-2 EV to +2 EV in increments 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV)
Viewfinder Type:
N/A

Memory Card:
SD / SDHC
Live Mode:
Yes

Power:
Rechargeable li-ion
Dimensions:
68.7 x 57.9 x 38.6mm

Movie Mode:
Yes, VGA only
Weight:
161g

Built-in Image Stabilisation:
Yes, Ricoh VC (Vibration Correction) sensor-shift method
ISO:
100-3200

White Balance:
Auto / Multi-P AUTO / Outdoors / Cloudy / Incandescent Lamp / Fluorescent Lamp / Manual Settings / Detail; white balance Bracketing
Metering System:
TTL-CCD metering in multi (256-segment), center-weighted, and spot modes with autoexposure lock

Exposure Modes:
Program AE, aperture priority AE, manual exposure, shutter priority AE, move target function
Shutter Speeds:
180 – 1/2000 second

File Format:
Jpeg, Raw
Lens Mount:
Ricoh GXR

LCD:
3in, 920K-dot
Focal Length Mag:
3x zoom; 24-72mm equivalent

Output Size:
3648 x 2048
Sensor:
10MP 1/1.7” CCD