Ricoh interview

Picture: Keita Hashizume, manager for Ricoh?s European camera business (right) with Kazunobu Saiki, the outgoing general manager

Photo credit: Damien Demolder

Ricoh has revealed full details of its new 28-300mm GXR-system camera unit and confirmed a UK price.

The P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC will cost a penny under £250 when it arrives in UK stores at the beginning of June, according to Keita Hashizume, manager for Ricoh?s European camera business.

In a meeting with Amateur Photographer, Hashizume explained that the superzoom will be fitted with a 1/2.3in, 10-million-pixel, back-illuminated CMOS sensor.

The new module is also equipped with a 1cm macro function and dynamic range double shot.

The sensor is the same unit as that used in the company?s CX3 compact camera, but a new image-processing engine, Smooth Imaging Engine IV, should reduce noise levels when the sensor is used above ISO 800. The top ISO rating is 3200.

Capable of recording full resolution [raw format] bursts of up to 5fps, the P10 unit can also shoot 1280×720-pixel HD movies.

The VC in the name refers to Ricoh?s sensor-shift image-stabilisation function that helps to compensate for the effects of camera shake.

Kazunobu Saiki, the outgoing general manager for Ricoh?s European camera business, tells us that the lens unit will come pre-loaded with a firmware update for the GXR body.

?As soon as the lens unit is fitted to the body, a message will appear on the screen asking the user to update the body firmware. The firmware is already loaded in the lens unit, so the process is very simple and users will not have to download it to an SD card from the internet,? Saiki said.

At the meeting, Ricoh also confirmed that the A12 28mm f/2.5 wideangle fixed focal-length lens unit will be arriving in the autumn. The lens has an actual focal length of about 18mm, but will act as a 28mm lens would on a 35mm sensor.

The lens will be paired with an APS-C CMOS sensor. Ricoh will also announce plans later this year for more lens units and modules for the GXR system.

Saiki tells us that, of all the concept units that Ricoh has presented to the public (that will slide into the GXR body), the most popular have been a projector unit, a hard-drive storage unit and a sensor-only unit that allows non-Ricoh lenses to be mounted to it.

Further ideas include a remotely controlled lens unit that will be connected to the camera body via a cable for photographing in difficult places, a further wirelessly controlled underwater unit, a printer unit and a GPS unit.

In recognition of the company?s core business interests, Saiki also showed us a dummy photocopying unit, but added that commercialisation of this particular unit is a slender possibility.

Ricoh 28-300mm