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Ricoh GR II Comparison Review

The Ricoh GR II is a fixed lens compact camera that was announced in June 2015 and is equipped with an APS-C sensor. It offers a resolution of 16.1 megapixel.

camera

Is the Ricoh GR II a good camera? The GR II has a Camera Elo of 2095. This rating puts the GR II among the top 50 percent of all prime lens compact cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (APS cameras), the GR II ranks among the top 40 percent. Based on its within category standings, the camera earns a 3.5-star performance rating.

Headline Specifications
Ricoh GR II
Fixed lens compact camera
28mm f/2.8
16.1 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/30p Video
ISO 100 - 25 600
Viewfinder optional
3.0 LCD, 1230k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
4 shutter flaps per second
320 shots per battery charge
117 x 63 x 35 mm, 251 g


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Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.

Body comparison with a credit card

An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Ricoh GR II vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Ricoh GR II vs credit card front
GR II versus credit card top view
GR II and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Ricoh GR II alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Ricoh GR II 117 mm 63 mm 35 mm 251 g 320 n Jun 2015 699 i
 
Canon G7 X 103 mm 60 mm 40 mm 304 g 210 n Sep 2014 699i
 
Fujifilm X70 113 mm 64 mm 44 mm 340 g 330 n Jan 2016 799i
 
Nikon P900 140 mm 103 mm 137 mm 899 g 360 n Mar 2015 599i
 
Panasonic GM5 99 mm 60 mm 36 mm 211 g 220 n Sep 2014 749i
 
Ricoh GR 117 mm 61 mm 35 mm 245 g 290 n Apr 2013 799i
 
Sony RX100 V 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 299 g 220 n Oct 2016 999 i
 
Sony RX100 IV 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 298 g 280 n Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony RX100 III 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 290 g 320 n May 2014 799i
 
Sony RX100 II 102 mm 58 mm 38 mm 281 g 350 n Jun 2013 749i
 
Sony NEX-5R 111 mm 59 mm 39 mm 276 g 330 n Aug 2012 749i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Ricoh GR II was launched in the US market at a price of $699. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

Ricoh GR II:
Check Amazon price

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants 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. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

The Ricoh GR II features an APS-C sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.5. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Ricoh GR II among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability.

Ricoh GR II sensor measures

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

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Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
 
Ricoh GR II APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.613.7107880
 
Canon G7 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p23.012.755671
 
Fujifilm X70 APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p........
 
Nikon P900 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60p........
 
Panasonic GM5 Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34481080/60p22.111.772166
 
Ricoh GR APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.613.597278
 
Sony RX100 V 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.458670
 
Sony RX100 IV 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.659170
 
Sony RX100 III 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.412.349567
 
Sony RX100 II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.512.448367
 
Sony NEX-5R APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.713.191078

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The GR II indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the GR II can use is 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The following tables report on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Ricoh GR II and comparable cameras.

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Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
(000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
 
Ricoh GR IIoptional n 3.0 1230 fixed n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
 
Canon G7 Xnone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 6.5 Y Y
 
Fujifilm X70optional n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 8.0 Y n
 
Nikon P900921 n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 7.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic GM51166 n 3.0 921 fixed Y 1/500s 5.8 n n
 
Ricoh GRoptional n 3.0 1230 fixed n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
 
Sony RX100 V2359 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 1/2000s 24.0 Y Y
 
Sony RX100 IV2359 n 3.0 1228 tilting n 1/2000s 16.0 Y Y
 
Sony RX100 III1440 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony RX100 IIoptional n 3.0 1229 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony NEX-5Roptional n 3.0 920 tilting Y 1/4000s 10.0 n n

One convenient feature of the GR II is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.

Connection comparison

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 Ricoh GR II and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
 
Ricoh GR IIYstereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon G7 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Fujifilm X70YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--
 
Nikon P900-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Panasonic GM5Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Ricoh GRYmonomono--micro2.0---
 
Sony RX100 V-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony RX100 IV-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony RX100 III-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony RX100 IIYstereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony NEX-5RYstereomono--mini2.0Y--

It is notable that the GR II offers wifi support. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

The GR II has a prime lens built in (18.3mm f/2.8), which, in full frame equivalent terms, provides a focal length of 28mm. The camera is, hence, ready to shoot, while remaining more compact in size than an interchangeable lens camera with an optic of similar focal length and aperture specifications.

Expert reviews

While the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the GR II in practical situations. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased. This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Ricoh GR II....4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 699 i
 
Canon G7 X+ +77/1004.5/53.5/54.5/5 Sep 2014 699i
 
Fujifilm X70..76/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2016 799i
 
Nikon P900..77/1004/54.5/54/5 Mar 2015 599i
 
Panasonic GM5+77/1005/55/54.5/5 Sep 2014 749i
 
Ricoh GR..79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2013 799i
 
Sony RX100 V+ +83/1004/55/54.5/5 Oct 2016 999 i
 
Sony RX100 IV+ +85/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony RX100 III+ +82/1004.5/54.5/55/5 May 2014 799i
 
Sony RX100 II+ +79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jun 2013 749i
 
Sony NEX-5R....4.5/5..4.5/5 Aug 2012 749i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

Ricoh GR II FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the GR II.

What type of imaging sensor is used in the GR II?

The camera has a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.

Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?

Ricoh equipped the GR II with the GR Engine V image processor.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the GR II?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 25600.

Can the camera be equipped with an optional viewfinder?

Yes, Ricoh provides the GV-1 as an accessory (here on amazon) that can be mounted on the hotshoe.

Do I need to purchase an external camera trigger to shoot time-lapse sequences?

No, the Ricoh GR II has an intervalometer built-in, so that low frequency shooting (for example, flower blooming, sunset, moon rise) can be undertaken without the need to purchase a separate external intervalometer and related software.

Does the Ricoh GR II feature an autofocus assist light?

Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.

What is the fastest shutter speed that can be used with flash?

The GR II's flash sync speed is 1/400 sec.

Does the Ricoh GR II support the Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus interface for SD cards?

Yes, the camera can indeed use UHS-I cards (data transfer speed of up to 104 MB/s).

Which battery does the GR II use?

The camera gets its power from the DB65 (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.

Camera to camera comparisons

If you would like to see a side-by-side review of this and another camera, just make your choice using the following search menu. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

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    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Ricoh GR II
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 28mm f/2.8
    Launch Date June 2015
    Launch Price USD 699
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.7 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 370 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.4 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 16.1 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4 928 x 3 264 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.79 μm
    Pixel Density 4.35 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 25 600 ISO
    Image Processor GR Engine V
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 80
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 23.6
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 13.7
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 1078
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional
    LCD Framing Live View
    LCD Size 1230k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing Aidno Peaking Feature
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/4000s
    Continuous Shooting 4 shutter flaps/s
    Silent Shootingno E-Shutter
    Time Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer Built-in
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in
    Body Specs
    Battery Type DB65 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)320 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 117 x 63 x 35 mm
    (4.6 x 2.5 x 1.4 in)
    Camera Weight 251 g (8.9 oz)

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