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Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Ricoh: Wide-angle, stabilized digicam with removeable viewfinder
(Wednesday, March 28, 2007 - 14:48 EDT)

Japanese consumer electronics and office automation company Ricoh has announced what has to rank as one of the more interesting and unusual digital camera models launched so far this year.

The Ricoh Caplio GX100 is a compact camera with ten megapixel resolution from a 1/1.75" image sensor, coupled to a 3x optical zoom lens. The most unusual feature of the Ricoh GX100 is that, in addition to its 2.5" LCD display with 230,000 pixel resolution, the camera can accept a hot-shoe mounted, removable electronic viewfinder - with tilt function for shooting low-to-the-ground - on which you can frame and review images. The Ricoh VF-1 external viewfinder is not included in the regular product bundle (although a separate product bundle dubbed the "Caplio GX100 VF KIT" does include the accessory).

Also worthy of note is the Caplio GX100's Ricoh-branded zoom lens - uncommonly wide with a range of 24 - 72mm, and fairly bright to boot (f/2.5 to f/4.4 across the zoom range). Add in the camera's Adobe DNG Raw file format, CCD shift-type image stabilization, a choice of aperture-priority and full manual shooting modes, built-in flash and external flash hot shoe, and the ability to draw power from either a proprietary Lithium Ion battery or two standard AAA batteries (either alkaline or oxyride disposable, or NiMH rechargeables), and you have a camera that could really appeal to an enthusiast. One last unusual feature is that, on top of the camera's native 4:3 aspect ratio and a fairly standard 3:2 aspect ratio option, the GX100 also offers a 1:1 (square image) aspect ratio option in-camera.

All in all, the Ricoh Caplio GX100 seems worthy of consideration (although it might have been even more interesting with a somewhat lower resolution that would likely bring reduced image noise - the bugbear of ten megapixel image sensors). Announced so far in Asia and Europe, we're not currently aware of any plans to bring the GX100 to the US market. In the United Kingdom, the GX100 goes on sale from April priced at £399.99 inclusive of VAT, which roughly equates to US$680 before tax (and ignoring exchange rate fluctuations, taxes and duties).

Ricoh Caplio GX100
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Camera TypeCompact
Model NumberGX100
Dimensions4.4 x 2.3 x 1.0"
111.6 x 58.0 x 25.0mm
Weight250.0 g
8.7 oz
Image Capture
Sensor Type1/1.75" CCD
10.30 megapixels (total)
10.01 megapixels (effective)
Filter TypeRGBG

Aspect Rat


4:3, 3:2
Image Dimensions3648 x 2736 (10.0 megapixels)
3648 x 2432 (8.9 megapixels)
3264 x 2448 (8.0 megapixels)
2736 x 2736 (7.5 megapixels)
2592 x 1944 (5.0 megapixels)
2048 x 1536 (3.1 megapixels)
1280 x 960 (1.2 megapixels)
640 x 480 (0.3 megapixels)
Image Quality3 levels
Image Preview / Review
ViewfinderYes, VF-1 detachable electronic viewfinder (optional)
LCD2.5", 230,000 pixels
Lens TypeRicoh Zoom Lens
3x optical zoom
Image StabilizationYes
Focal Length5.1 - 15.3mm (actual)
24 - 72mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Rangef/2.5 - 9.1 (wide); f/4.4 - 15.8 (tele)
Focusing SystemManual Focus possible (0) steps
Focusing RangeNormal: 12" - infinity (30 cm - infinity)
Macro: 0.4" - infinity (1.0 cm - infinity)
ISO SensitivityAuto, Auto-Hi, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Shutter Speed180 - 1/2000 second
Exposure ModesAperture, Manual
Metering Modes256-segment multi, center-weighted, spot
Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White BalanceImage Sensor - Auto, Outdoor, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Manual, Manual
Internal FlashModes: Flash Off, Auto, Red-eye Flash, Flash On, Flash Synchro, Soft Flash
Range: Approx. 0.2 - 5.0 m (wide-angle), 0.15 - 3.0 m (telephoto)
Scene ModesPortrait, Sports, Landscape, Nightscape, Skew correction, Text, Zoom macro, High Sensitivity
Digital Zoom4x
Self TimerYes, 2 or 10 seconds
Time LapseYes
Movie FormatAVI (Open DML Motion JPEG) with audio
Recording MediumSD/MMC, Built-in
File SystemComplies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File FormatCCD-RAW, Raw (.DNG), JPEG (EXIF 2.21)
VideoYes, NTSC / PAL switchable
ComputerUSB 2.0 High Speed
Battery TypeLi-Ion (DB-60) or Alkaline / Oxyride / NiMH (AAA)
Battery Form Factor1 x Proprietary DB-60 or 2 x AAA
Product Bundle
Battery / Charger1 x DB-60 Lithium Ion rechargeable battery and charger
Flash Memory26.0MB built-in memory
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliantYes
Internal MicrophoneYes
Internal SpeakerYes
Tripod MountYes
Remote ControlNo
More Photos
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Ricoh's Caplio GX100 digital camera. Courtesy of Ricoh, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!

Original Source Press Release:

New: RICOH Caplio GX100

Ricoh launches the Caplio GX100 compact digital camera with 24 to 72 mm equivalent wide zoom and a first in the digital camera category with a removable electronic viewfinder.

Tokyo, Japan, March 28, 2007. Ricoh (President and CEO: Masamitsu Sakurai) announces the launch of its new Caplio GX100 digital camera. The Caplio GX100 is a superior model that achieves high picture quality thanks to the high-speed F2.5 aperture and high-performance 24 to 72 mm wide zoom lens (35mm film equivalent), 10.01 megapixel CCD, and "Smooth Imaging Engine II" packed into a compact body just 25mm thick - a first in the digital camera category.

The new Caplio GX100 is the successor to the popular Caplio GX8 (launched May 2005, open priced). Caplio GX8 was a highly practical superior model featuring comprehensive manual shooting functions and the expandability to allow system upgrades to meet various applications.

The Caplio GX100 is a high-performance camera packed with advanced functions including

  1. a 24 to 72 mm equivalent high-performance wide zoom lens (Caplio GX8: 28 to 85 mm equivalent) that can be expanded to even ultra-wide-angle shooting equivalent to 19 mm using the optional wide conversion lens,
  2. being the first digital camera to support a removable electronic viewfinder (LCD viewfinder), and
  3. high image quality thanks to the 10.01 megapixel effective CCD (Caplio GX8: 8.24 megapixel) and popular Smooth Imaging Engine II image processing.

Main features of the new Caplio GX100

  1. 24 to 72 mm high-performance wide zoom lens in a compact body.
    • The newly developed 24 to 72 mm wide zoom lens (35mm film equivalent) features a generous configuration of 11 elements in 7 groups, including aspheric surface lenses and high-refractive-index, low-dispersion lenses. This optimal configuration restricts distortion, chromatic aberration, and light falloff at edges for wide-angle operations while delivering aperture light settings from F2.5(Wide-angle) to F4.4(Telephoto).
    • The body size of 25mm is the smallest that can accommodate* a zoom lens of 24 mm or longer, making it easy to carry and enjoy photography anywhere. *Smallest volume as of 27th March 2007.
    • The 7 blade iris aperture enables fine tuning and achieves beautiful blurred backgrounds.
    • The optional wide conversion lens enables users to shoot 19 mm ultra-wide-angle photography (but note a separate optional hood and adaptor set is required).
  2. Removable electronic viewfinder.
    • This is the first camera to support a tilted and removable electronic viewfinder.
    • Offers 100% viewfinder coverage without parallax and multi information display similar to a LCD monitor.
    • Great for photography in bright outdoor environments. Take photographs as though using a conventional film camera.
    • The electronic viewfinder is included in the "Caplio GX100 VF KIT".
  3. The 10.01 megapixel CCD combined with an advanced image-processing engine achieves high picture quality with low noise.
    • The 10.01 megapixel effective CCD combined with the popular unique image-processing engine "Smooth Imaging Engine II" achieves low noise as well as high picture quality precisely reproducing even details.
  4. Twin dials and other controls offer wide array of functions such as simple manual operations.
    • The Mode Dial on top of the body, the Up-Down Dial at the front of the body, the ADJ lever at the rear of the body and function buttons on the upper part of the body, etc. allow a wide array of manual settings such as aperture-priority AE settings, manual exposure settings, white balance adjustment, and ISO sensitivity selection while holding the camera in one hand.
    • Directly select “My Settings” on the Mode Dial to take photos using the arbitrarily allocated settings.
    • New features such as the square mode with a 1:1 aspect ratio and the sepia mode further enhance the range of expression.
  5. Excellent expandability with a broad range of accessories for both exclusive use and general purpose.
    • The Caplio GX100‘s hot shoe accepts an electronic viewfinder, an external flash, or an external viewfinder available on the market.
    • The optional hood and adaptor allow use of the 19 mm wide conversion lens or other 43 mm diameter accessories, such as various filters available on the market.
    • An optional cable switch is also available.
    • The Caplio GX100 can meet the diverse needs of professional photographers, high-end amateurs and commercial uses.
  6. Wide-view-angle LCD panel.
    • A crystal-clear 2.5-inch 230,000 LCD panel with a wide 170° view angle.
  7. Powerful macro functions.
    • Retaining the conventional popular macro mode that focuses down to 1 cm (on the wide side), the Caplio GX100 permits macro photography using the blur effect down to 4 cm even on the telephoto side.
  8. Compatible with three different power sources: high-capacity rechargeable batteries, AAA batteries, and AC adaptor.
    • The Caplio GX100 gets approximately 380 exposures with the included high-capacity rechargeable batteries or approximately 35 exposures using AAA dry batteries. The optional AC adaptor, which is convenient for indoor shooting, can also be used as a third power source.
  9. Images can be captured in various combinations of resolution and compression. RAW compression and RAW with JPEG can be selected for ultimate quality.
    • RAW compression and RAW with JPEG can be selected for ultimate quality.
  10. An aspect ratio of 3:2 and 1:1 can be selected.
    • Ratio of 3:2 is the same aspect ratio as 35mm and most digital SLR‘s that allows images to be printed in standard sizes without cropping.
  11. Vibration Correction function, based on a CCD shift method
    • When camera movement from hand shake is detected, the vibration correction system, based on Ricoh’s own CCD shift method, moves the CCD in the opposite direction to make corrective adjustments. This results in the ability to take clear, sharp telephoto shots at high zoom magnification, macro shots, and indoor shots without the negative effects of blurring.

*1 The VF-1 LCD viewfinder is included in "GX100 VF KIT".
*2 The HA-2 hood and adapter is required to use the wide conversion lens. While the wide conversion lens is attached, the internal flash can‘t be used because vignetting may occur.
*3 The ST-1 neck strap for the Caplio GX/GX8 cannot be used.

List of Caplio GX100 Options:
Rechargeable batteries DB-60, Battery charger BJ-6, AC adapter AC-4c, LCD viewfinder*1 VF-1, Wide conversion lens*2 DW-6, Hood and adapter HA-2, Soft case SC-45, Neck strap*3 GS-1, Cable switch CA-1

Accessories included:
Rechargeable Battery DB-60, Battery Charger BJ-6, Lens Cap, USB Cable, AV Cable, Handstrap, Software CD-Rom, Manual

GX100 with electronic viewfinder included will be available at the end of April 2007 at £399.99 inc vat.

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