Ricoh Theta SC Review
|Full model name:||Ricoh Theta SC|
|Sensor size:||1/2.3 inch
(6.2mm x 4.6mm)
|Viewfinder:||No / No LCD|
|Native ISO:||100 - 1600|
|Extended ISO:||100 - 1600|
|Shutter:||1/8000 - 60 sec|
1.8 x 5.1 x 0.9 in.
(45 x 131 x 23 mm)
|Full specs:||Ricoh Theta SC specifications|
Ricoh Theta SC Review -- First Impressions
by Jeremy Gray
Preview posted: 10/12/2016
For those wanting to capture and share 360-degree photos and videos, Ricoh now has a third option for the prospective buyer. Nestled in between the entry level Theta M15 and the flagship Theta S, the newly-announced Theta SC comes with a price point of just under US$300, a rather enticing price point indeed.
Available in time for the holidays, the Theta SC offers the same image quality as the Theta S but in a smaller form factor, weighing in at nearly an ounce less than the Theta S model. Powered by dual 12-megapixel 1/2.3" CMOS sensors producing a combined output of about 14.5 megapixels, the Theta S can capture high-resolution stills and Full HD (1920 x 1080) video at 30p for up to five minutes per clip.
Media is recorded via two 7.3mm-equivalent f/2.0 lenses and is then processed into a fully spherical image or video that displays a full 360-degree field-of-view. Content is saved to the camera's 8GB of internal storage. After recording images and video, you can upload your files to Ricoh's theta360.com website and share them to social media.
Ricoh's goal with the Theta SC, according to Ricoh Imaging Americas Corp. President Kaz Eguchi, "is to produce a high-quality camera at an affordable price point that appeals to anyone who is interested in capturing and sharing the world around them in this new, exciting digital imaging format." Ricoh believes that there's a burgeoning market for 360-degree cameras and hopes that the SC and its aggressive pricing will lure in people who might otherwise be on the fence.
Its distinct design allows the Theta SC to be used one-handed or placed on a flat surface or tripod and be remotely controlled via a smartphone app. Speaking of the Theta S app, Ricoh has released an updated version of their Theta S Android and iOS app, which is designed to be more user-friendly and allow for easier capture, viewing and sharing of Theta images and videos.
Focus is fixed with everything from about 10cm (4") to infinity rendered in focus. Exposure modes offered are Program AE, ISO Priority AE, Shutter Priority AE and Manual, with +/-2 EV of exposure compensation available.
ISO sensitivity ranges from 100 to 1600 for both stills and video, and there are ten white balance settings including Auto. Shutter speeds normally range from 1/8000 second to 1/8 second in auto exposure modes, but up to 60 second exposures are possible in Manual mode. (Note: A smartphone is required to change modes or configure manual settings.)
The built-in lithium-ion battery is rated for 260 shots per charge, and is recharged via the Theta SC's Micro USB 2.0 port. The optional CA-3 Remote Cable Switch is also supported.
To get a an idea about the Theta SC's imaging capabilities, you can refer to our review of the Theta S. The Ricoh Theta SC is available now for just under US$300 in beige, blue, pink and white.