Olympus TG-6 vs Ricoh GR
The Olympus Tough TG-6 and the Ricoh GR are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in May 2019 and April 2013. Both the TG-6 and the GR are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/2.3-inch (TG-6) and an APS-C (GR) sensor. The Olympus has a resolution of 12 megapixels, whereas the Ricoh provides 16.1 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|25-100mm f/2.0-4.9||28mm f/2.8|
|12 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor||16.1 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|4K/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO 100-12800||ISO 100-25600|
|No viewfinder, LCD framing||Viewfinder optional|
|3.0" LCD, 1040k dots||3.0" LCD, 1230k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|20 shutter flaps per second||4 shutter flaps per second|
|In-body stabilization||No shake reduction|
|Waterproof body (nom)||Not weather sealed|
|340 shots per battery charge||290 shots per battery charge|
|113 x 66 x 32 mm, 253 g||117 x 61 x 35 mm, 245 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Olympus Tough TG-6 and the Ricoh GR? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Olympus TG-6 and the Ricoh GR is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The TG-6 can be obtained in two different colors (black, red), while the GR is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Ricoh GR is somewhat smaller (4 percent) than the Olympus TG-6. Moreover, the GR is slightly lighter (3 percent) than the TG-6. It is worth mentioning in this context that the TG-6 is splash and dust resistant, while the GR does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing. More than that, the TG-6 is water-proof up to 15m and can, thus, be used for underwater photography.
Concerning battery life, the TG-6 gets 340 shots out of its LI-92B battery, while the GR can take 290 images on a single charge of its DB65 power pack. The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.
|Olympus TG-6»||113 mm||66 mm||32 mm||253 g||340||Y||May 2019||449||Olympus TG-6|
|Ricoh GR«||117 mm||61 mm||35 mm||245 g||290||n||Apr 2013||799||Ricoh GR|
|Canon SX740« »||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||299 g||265||n||Jul 2018||399||Canon SX740|
|Fujifilm XF10« »||113 mm||64 mm||41 mm||279 g||330||n||Jul 2018||499||Fujifilm XF10|
|Olympus TG-5« »||113 mm||66 mm||32 mm||250 g||340||Y||May 2017||449||Olympus TG-5|
|Olympus TG-4« »||112 mm||66 mm||31 mm||247 g||380||Y||Apr 2015||379||Olympus TG-4|
|Olympus E-PM1« »||110 mm||64 mm||34 mm||265 g||330||n||Jun 2011||499||Olympus E-PM1|
|Olympus XZ-1« »||111 mm||65 mm||42 mm||275 g||320||n||Jan 2011||499||Olympus XZ-1|
|Panasonic FT7« »||117 mm||76 mm||37 mm||319 g||300||Y||May 2018||449||Panasonic FT7|
|Panasonic GM5« »||99 mm||60 mm||36 mm||211 g||220||n||Sep 2014||749||Panasonic GM5|
|Panasonic GM1« »||99 mm||55 mm||30 mm||204 g||230||n||Oct 2013||749||Panasonic GM1|
|Ricoh WG-6« »||118 mm||66 mm||33 mm||246 g||340||Y||Feb 2019||399||Ricoh WG-6|
|Ricoh GR II« »||117 mm||63 mm||35 mm||251 g||320||n||Jun 2015||699||Ricoh GR II|
|Sony HX99« »||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||242 g||370||n||Aug 2018||449||Sony HX99|
|Sony HX95« »||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||242 g||370||n||Aug 2018||429||Sony HX95|
|Sony RX100 III« »||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||290 g||320||n||May 2014||799||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||102 mm||58 mm||38 mm||281 g||350||n||Jun 2013||749||Sony RX100 II|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The TG-6 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 44 percent) than the GR, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Olympus TG-6 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Ricoh GR an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the GR is 1221 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 1.5. The sensor in the TG-6 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the GR offers a 3:2 aspect.
With 16.1MP, the GR offers a higher resolution than the TG-6 (12MP), but the GR nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.79μm versus 1.53μm for the TG-6) due to its larger sensor. However, the TG-6 is a much more recent model (by 6 years and 1 month) than the GR, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the GR has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Ricoh GR implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the GR for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 24.6 x 16.3 inch or 62.6 x 41.5 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 19.7 x 13.1 inch or 50.1 x 33.2 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 16.4 x 10.9 inch or 41.7 x 27.6 cm. The corresponding values for the Olympus TG-6 are 20 x 15 inch or 50.8 x 38.1 cm for good quality, 16 x 12 inch or 40.6 x 30.5 cm for very good quality, and 13.3 x 10 inch or 33.9 x 25.4 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Olympus Tough TG-6 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Ricoh GR are ISO 100 to ISO 25600 (no boost).
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Olympus TG-6||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Olympus TG-6|
|Ricoh GR||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.6||13.5||972||78||Ricoh GR|
|Canon SX740||1/2.3||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Canon SX740|
|Fujifilm XF10||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||4K/15p||..||..||..||..||Fujifilm XF10|
|Olympus TG-5||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Olympus TG-5|
|Olympus TG-4||1/2.3||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||..||..||..||..||Olympus TG-4|
|Olympus E-PM1||Four Thirds||12.2||4032||3024||1080/60i||21.0||10.3||499||52||Olympus E-PM1|
|Olympus XZ-1||1/1.7||10.1||3664||2752||720/30p||18.8||10.4||117||34||Olympus XZ-1|
|Panasonic FT7||1/2.3||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Panasonic FT7|
|Panasonic GM5||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.1||11.7||721||66||Panasonic GM5|
|Panasonic GM1||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60i||22.3||11.7||660||66||Panasonic GM1|
|Ricoh WG-6||1/2.3||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Ricoh WG-6|
|Ricoh GR II||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.6||13.7||1078||80||Ricoh GR II|
|Sony HX99||1/2.3||18.0||4896||3672||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Sony HX99|
|Sony HX95||1/2.3||18.0||4896||3672||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Sony HX95|
|Sony RX100 III||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.4||12.3||495||67||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.5||12.4||483||67||Sony RX100 II|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the TG-6 provides a higher video resolution than the GR. It can shoot video footage at 4K/30p, while the Ricoh is limited to 1080/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The TG-6 and the GR are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. That said, the GR can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the GV-1. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Olympus TG-6 and Ricoh GR along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Olympus TG-6||none||n||3.0||1040||fixed||n||1/2000s||20.0||Y||Y||Olympus TG-6|
|Ricoh GR||optional||n||3.0||1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0||Y||n||Ricoh GR|
|Canon SX740||none||n||3.0||922||tilting||n||1/3200s||10.0||Y||Y||Canon SX740|
|Fujifilm XF10||none||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n||Fujifilm XF10|
|Olympus TG-5||none||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||1/2000s||20.0||Y||Y||Olympus TG-5|
|Olympus TG-4||none||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0||Y||Y||Olympus TG-4|
|Olympus E-PM1||optional||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||1/4000s||5.5||n||Y||Olympus E-PM1|
|Olympus XZ-1||optional||n||3.0||614||fixed||n||1/2000s||2.0||Y||Y||Olympus XZ-1|
|Panasonic FT7||1170||n||3.0||1040||fixed||n||1/1300s||10.0||Y||Y||Panasonic FT7|
|Panasonic GM5||1166||n||3.0||921||fixed||Y||1/500s||5.8||n||n||Panasonic GM5|
|Panasonic GM1||none||n||3.0||1036||fixed||Y||1/500s||5.0||Y||n||Panasonic GM1|
|Ricoh WG-6||none||n||3.0||1040||fixed||n||1/4000s||1.0||Y||n||Ricoh WG-6|
|Ricoh GR II||optional||n||3.0||1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0||Y||n||Ricoh GR II|
|Sony HX99||638||n||3.0||922||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Sony HX99|
|Sony HX95||638||n||3.0||922||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Sony HX95|
|Sony RX100 III||1440||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II||optional||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 II|
The Olympus TG-6 and the Ricoh GR both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
The TG-6 is equipped with a zoom lens, while the GR comes with a built-in prime. The TG-6 has a 25-100mm f/2.0-4.9 optic and the GR offers a 28mm f/2.8 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Olympus provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the Ricoh. The TG-6 offers the faster maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the TG-6 and the GR write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Olympus Tough TG-6 and Ricoh GR and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Olympus TG-6||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus TG-6|
|Ricoh GR||Y||mono||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-||Ricoh GR|
|Canon SX740||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Canon SX740|
|Fujifilm XF10||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Fujifilm XF10|
|Olympus TG-5||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus TG-5|
|Olympus TG-4||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus TG-4|
|Olympus E-PM1||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-PM1|
|Olympus XZ-1||Y||mono||none||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus XZ-1|
|Panasonic FT7||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic FT7|
|Panasonic GM5||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GM5|
|Panasonic GM1||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GM1|
|Ricoh WG-6||-||mono||mono||-||-||micro||3.0||-||-||-||Ricoh WG-6|
|Ricoh GR II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Ricoh GR II|
|Sony HX99||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Sony HX99|
|Sony HX95||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Sony HX95|
|Sony RX100 III||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 II|
It is notable that the TG-6 offers wifi support, while the GR does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Travel and landscape photographers will find it useful that the TG-6 has an internal geolocalization sensor and can record GPS coordinates in its EXIF data.
The TG-6 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Olympus. In contrast, the GR has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the GR was succeeded by the Ricoh GR II. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Olympus and Ricoh websites.
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Olympus TG-6 or the Ricoh GR – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Advantages of the Olympus Tough TG-6:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/30p).
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (20 vs 4 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/2.8).
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (340 versus 290) on a single battery charge.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- Water-proof: Is rugged and sealed and can thus be used for underwater photography (up to 15m).
- Easier geotagging: Features an internal GPS sensor to log localization data.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (44 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 6 years and 1 month of technical progress since the GR launch.
Arguments in favor of the Ricoh GR:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (16.1 vs 12MP), which boosts linear resolution by 18%.
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
- Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
- More framing options: Can be equipped with a hotshoe-mounted accessory-viewfinder.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1230k vs 1040k dots).
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in April 2013).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the TG-6 emerges as the winner of the contest (13 : 11 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional sports photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a street photog, and a person interested in family portraits has distinct needs from a landscape shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Olympus TG-6 and the Ricoh GR place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Prime Lens Compact Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the TG-6 or the GR. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 7D II vs Ricoh GR III
- Canon T3 vs Ricoh GR III
- Fujifilm GFX 50R vs Ricoh GR II
- Fujifilm X-A7 vs Ricoh GR
- Leica D-LUX 5 vs Ricoh GR II
- Leica X1 vs Ricoh GR III
- Nikon D3400 vs Ricoh GR
- Nikon D800E vs Ricoh GR III
- Panasonic FZ200 vs Ricoh GR III
- Panasonic GF5 vs Ricoh GR II
- Panasonic L1 vs Ricoh GR III
- Ricoh GR III vs Sony NEX-5R
Specifications: Olympus TG-6 vs Ricoh GR
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||25-100mm f/2.0-4.9||28mm f/2.8|
|Launch Date||May 2019||April 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 449||USD 799|
|Sensor Specs||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||23.7 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||369.72 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||28.4 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||12 Megapixels||16.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4000 x 3000 pixels||4928 x 3264 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.53 μm||4.79 μm|
|Pixel Density||42.74 MP/cm2||4.35 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100-12800 ISO||100-25600 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||78|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||23.6|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||13.5|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||972|
|Screen Specs||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Viewfinder Type||No viewfinder||Viewfinder optional|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1230k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||No Peaking Feature|
|Continuous Shooting||20 shutter flaps/s||4 shutter flaps/s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Image Stabilization||In-body stabilization||No handshake reduction|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Geotagging||GPS built-in||no internal GPS|
|Body Specs||Olympus TG-6||Ricoh GR|
|Environmental Sealing||Waterproof body (15m)||Not weather sealed|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||340 shots per charge||290 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||USB charging|
113 x 66 x 32 mm
(4.4 x 2.6 x 1.3 in)
117 x 61 x 35 mm
(4.6 x 2.4 x 1.4 in)
|Camera Weight||253 g (8.9 oz)||245 g (8.6 oz)|
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