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| p.2 #3 · Ricoh GR vs Sony RX100 |
^ Updates on this? Would love to hear from this.
Working on going through all the images still I'm afraid. I'm the official city photographer and we have been having this 4 day day long Irish festival where I live, so I've been spending about 12 hours a day working on that so I'm in a bit of an image backlog right now to say the least.
I can share a few quick observations at the very least in the event that helps.
Of the cameras, I enjoyed shooting with, and thus took the most images with the GR first, the RX1 (since I had it with me) second and then the RX100.
As far as IQ, the RX1 far and away was the winner, especially at higher ISO, but that was no surprise. I mean a f2.0 lens on a state of the art 24meg full frame sensor vs a f2.8 lens on APS-C, not a fair fight.
So that said, I'm sure more are interested between the RX100 and the GR, as those are more realistic choices/competition.
GR hands down was the champ as far as handling and shooting enjoy. It frankly mopped the floor with the RX100, but, the RX100 did at times prove the more useful camera.
For example, they had some draft horses with all the harness stuff etc and they would all come charging into the show arena. Really cool shot getting a team of draft horses coming right at you full speed.
Well, needless to say, your not going to be able to get that shot with a 28mm equiv lens, so in that regard, the RX100, zoomed into 100mm, and shooting at 9fps or whatever its top speed is sure came in handy and got some pretty cool shots (D3s and a fast zoom would be better, but no way I want to carry that around for pleasure shooting)
Now other than that though, I basically used the RX100 at its widest setting, so its a case of where the zoom really isn't useful very often, BUT, when you do need it, its good to have.
As far as handling goes though, the RX100 felt a bit frustrating. It doesn't have a min shutter speed with auto ISO, so its always too slow, so I'd get some motion blur on subjects, even though the IS kept the camera steady. You could shoot manually but then that is a bit of hassle going in and out of buildings with changing light etc.
GR on the other hand let me select my min shutter speed and I could just let it ride the ISO as needed. Works so much better and such a simple little thing.
Likewise, changing settings on the Sony would require some button pushes, go into menu's, spin dials etc. On the GR, I could quickly access ISO, my snap focus distance, etc, all as I had them set up ahead of time.
Sony has some cool bells and whistles like HDR mode, but I also missed some shots because it was still in that mode and I'd miss what I wanted messing with trying to get it out.
GR never once frustrated me in terms of its handling, and if it did, I'm sure I could change that behavior with a custom tweak.
So on the basis of handling alone, GR, no questions asked.
HOWEVER, I will say, the GR did give me a lot of OOF shots, and/or hunt for focus. The RX100 is much quicker and almost always achieved focus.
I don't know if its just my GR, but a lot of times I'd focus, it would seem to lock, but then on viewing them later on the PC, the focus isn't really spot on, though it looked sharp enough on the LCD.
Luckily the camera has the snap focus modes, which come in pretty useful as I wouldn't call the GR that reliable otherwise in terms of AF. Its kind of like a X100 from Fuji used to be. It can work, but it can also miss, even when the light seems decent etc. That was kind of frustrating.
Finally, as far as IQ.... Fairly close, though the GR does have a bit sharper lens in the corners, and also does do better, but not by a huge margin at higher ISO. Frankly the GR isn't a great high ISO cam if you want really clean files. It has a grain, and it looks good for black and white though. Its just not the best APS-C can offer these days, but still pretty good.
The difference between f1.8 and f2.8 though did do a bit to equalize them really.
GR does have nicer SOOC jpegs with the high contrast b/w and sepia. Color nod goes to the Sony with a little richer color, but I personally love the in camera b/w stuff, and what else is cool is you can bracket it to give you a couple versions with each click of the shutter.
Again, a little frustrating though because the images looked so good on the LCD, but then on my 27" monitor they would be a little softer.
I guess in the end its a bit of a wash. GR handles better, but RX100 AF's better. GR does have better IQ at the same settings, but the RX100 has a faster lens to let you stay at a lower ISO. RX100 also does have the zoom, which not widely used, is a lot more useful than a 35mm crop mode.
The GR handling really does go a long way towards the enjoy of the camera though. It really is as good as people rave it is. Its not a perfect camera, but its a nice pocket carry.
I will say too, that being able to slip either the RX100 or the GR into my pocket was really nice for when I sat down to eat etc. Just beats having to set the RX1 on the table and keep an eye on it or having to try to hang onto it on a ride etc. Out of sight/out of mind sometimes is a nice camera feature when it can go into a pocket.
In the end I really don't know if I'll keep the GR or not. I mean the RX100 I already own and it works pretty good, but I rather do enjoy shooting with the GR and its just a likeable camera.
Further throwing a wrench into the works is I got a Nikon V1 recently at the blowout prices and darn if that little camera didn't amaze me (and every photographer I showed it to at the Irish festival) with its spot on AF and exposure. Added the 18mm f1.8, which is a 50mm equiv, and you can just shoot away like crazy, even little kids running around etc, with its PDAF af system. Its a really brilliant street camera except the IQ is a bit wanting at higher ISO. I'm rather enjoy using it and honestly today wondering why I'm carrying around 20lbs of Nikon DSLR's at the festival.
So hope that helps a little, and I'll try to get some IQ samples soon as I can, as I said though, not a huge difference due to lens speed.
If you shoot the RX100 at f2.8 then it is noiser by about 2 stops, but naturally you'd use it at f1.8 (or at least I do) so it kind of washes out.
Handling vs zoom and other features is really what it boils down to IMHO