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Posts Tagged ‘Ricoh’

Report: Ricoh announcing cost cuts in face of crisis

20 Jun

According to a report by Nikkei Ricoh is facing its biggest crisis ever and will have to cut costs in order to survive. Ricoh’s Imaging and Solutions division, which predominantly produces printers and accounts for 90% of Ricoh’s consolidated sales has been struggling the most. Nikkei reports that ‘Ricoh is staring at huge losses as the market for multifunctional printers, Ricoh’s cash cow, evaporates and its global sales network racks up high costs.’

In light of this situation Ricoh’s new President and CEO, Yoshinori Yamashita, has set a target of reducing costs by 100 billion yen ($ 912 million) through March 2020. He is also quoted as saying that the company’s new policy is to rid itself of the ’emphasis on market share above all else.’

According to the report the lion’s share of the cost cuts will be realized in Ricoh’s global sales and services network which comprises of more than two-thirds of the company’s 100,000 global employees. At this point it is not clear if and how Ricoh’s imaging brands, such as Pentax, the Theta 360 degree cameras or the R Development kit live-streaming VR camera will be impacted by the cost reductions. When Nikkei reported earlier this spring that Ricoh was considering leaving the camera business, Ricoh denied that it was considering such a move.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh R Development kit now shipping

16 Jun

The RICOH R Development Kit that was first shown to the public at Mobile World Congress this spring is now shipping and available to order for $ 499. The camera is capable of live-streaming fully spherical, 360-degree video in 2K resolution at 30 frames per second. The footage is stitched on the device in real time to fit the standard Equirectangular Projection Format. Streaming video can be output via HDMI or USB, and, when using a power adapter, continuously up to 24 hours. The camera can also record onto a micro SD card.

The kit consists of the camera, camera stand, a software development kit (SDK) as well as image-control tools and source code. Thanks to an open API the camera is controllable via USB. Potential applications include live streaming of events, telepresence, computer vision and surveillance.

The kit includes a camera stand and an SDK and source code to encourage third parties to build apps for it. Along with the camera hardware the following items have been made available:

  • “RICOH R Console” image-control tool (for PC/Mac)
  • “RICOH R Console” source code *through GitHub
  • Guide on how to do 360-degree live stream on YouTube
  • Users’ forum for developers
  • Other technical information, tools

Full technical specifications and more information can be found on the Ricoh website.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh announces WG-50 rugged compact with 5x zoom, built-in macro lights

25 May

Ricoh has introduced a new rugged compact camera – the WG-50 – which replaces the WG-30. The WG-50 offers a 28-140mm equiv. F3.5-5.5 lens. The WG-50 uses a 16MP BSI-CMOS sensor and is capable of recording Full HD video at 30 fps. It is waterproof for two hours at a depth of 14m/45ft, and can cope with being dropped from a height of 1.6m/5ft, will operate at temperatures as low as -10°C/+14F and can withstand 100kg/220lbs of force.

As with Ricoh’s other recent rugged cameras, the WG-50 has an array of six LEDs around the lens that can be used to assist macro shooting, selfies and when using the 2MP digital microscope mode.

The camera will go on sale at the end of June in a choice of orange or black, and will cost $ 279/£249. For more information see the Ricoh website.

Press release

RICOH COMPANY, LTD and RICOH IMAGING COMPANY, LTD. announced the launch of the RICOH WG-50 digital compact camera.

This new model features a compact, lightweight body design, delivering exceptional waterproof and shockproof performance.

Developed as a standard-class waterproof digital compact camera, the RICOH WG-50 provides dependable performance and outstanding operability in demanding outdoor conditions. The WG-50 is waterproof to a depth of 14 metres, shockproof against falls from a height of 1.6 metres, and freeze-proof to temperatures as low as -10°C. It also provides a range of features to facilitate all types of still-image and movie shooting, including approximately 16.0 effective megapixels and Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) movie recording capability. It also comes equipped with an outdoor friendly LCD screen on the brightness can be instantly adjusted to the lighting levels in a particular shooting situation.

The RICOH WG-50 features a range of optional camera-mounting accessories allowing the user to fix the camera securely on a bicycle or watercraft. Using the camera’s creative shooting functions, such as interval shooting and Full HD movie recording, the user can capture unique images seen from a very different angle or viewpoint.

RRP £249.99
Availability: End June 2017
Colours: Orange or Black

Main Features

1. Heavy-duty construction allowing underwater shooting down to 14 metres, for up to two hours of continuous operation (equivalent to IPX 8 or JIS Class 8). The RICOH WG-50 is also shockproof against falls from a height of 1.6 metres,* dustproof (equivalent to IPX 6 or JIS Class 6), freeze-proof to temperatures as low as -10°C, and crushproof against weights up to 100kgf (kilogram force). ** Thanks to this heavy-duty construction, the camera performs superbly and dependably even in difficult and demanding outdoor conditions.
* Measured under RICOH IMAGING-original testing standards — from a height of 1.6 metres, onto a surface of 5cm-thick plywood — conforming to Method 516.5-Shock of the MIL-Standard 810F
** Measured under RICOH IMAGING-original testing standards

2. Exceptional image quality
The WG-50 comes equipped with a back illuminated CMOS image sensor, which delivers excellent high-sensitivity and low-noise characteristics and high-speed readout of image data signals. Coupled with a high-performance imaging engine, this image sensor delivers a top sensitivity of ISO 6400 and super-high-resolution images with approximately 16.0 effective megapixels. This model also provides advanced image processing functions, made possible by the latest super-resolution technology, to assure sharp, clear, high-resolution images. It also offers such innovative features as Hand-held Night Snap mode, which automatically captures several images of the same night-time scene from which it produces a single, blur-free composite image. Some advanced features have also been added to this model to facilitate and upgrade scenic photography. For example, white-balance optimisation in the Landscape shooting mode reproduces brilliant greens of trees.

3. 5X optical zoom lens with a 28mm wide-angle coverage
The WG-50 features a high-performance, five-times optical zoom lens with a focal-length coverage from 5mm to 25mm (equivalent to approx. 28mm to 140mm in the 35mm format) to accommodate a wide range of scenes and subjects, including sweeping landscapes. It also provides other convenient shooting functions, such as a macro mode to capture dramatic close-up images from a minimum focusing distance of a mere one centimetre; an Intelligent Zoom function to extend the zoom range to approximately 36 times (equivalent to 1008mm in the 35mm format) without compromising image quality and ideal for superior telephoto photography; and an interval shooting mode, which comes in handy for fixed-point observation.

4. Underwater shooting mode
Specifically designed for underwater photography, the Underwater and Underwater Movie shooting modes are programmed to optimise colour and contrast, based on the data of images actually captured under the water. These modes deliver sharp, true-to-life images by enhancing shades of red which are lost in underwater photography, while effectively compensating for the loss of contrast caused by the diffusion of light in water. During Underwater mode, the Flash Off + Flash On option, allows the user to consecutively capture two images — with a single shutter release — one without flash and another with flash.

5. Six Macro Lights to assist close-up shooting, and a Self-Portrait Assist mode
Ideally positioned around the circumference of the lens barrel for macro shooting, six LED Macro Lights allow the WG-50 to provide bright, uniform illumination on a subject when the Digital Microscope mode is selected.*** Using these Macro Lights, the user can clearly see a magnified view of the microscopic world on the camera’s LCD screen, normally undetectable by the naked eye, to effortlessly capture eye-catching, close-up images. In order to minimize camera shake and subject shake, the Instant Illumination Enhance function allows for the use of a higher shutter speed by automatically raising the discharge level of the Macro Lights at the moment of shutter release. The Macro Lights also provide other useful functions, such as a Self-Portrait Assist mode, which uses the blink of an LED lamp to check if the subject’s face has been safely captured within the picture frame, and the LED Lighting mode, which uses the Macro Lights as a lighting device in the dark.
*** When this mode is selected, the image size is fixed at 2.0 megapixels (at 16:9 proportions).

6. Full HD movie recording for extended shooting of high-quality movies
The WG-50 provides Full HD movie recording employing the H.264 recording format. Users can capture high-quality, extended movie clips (1920 x 1080 pixels, 16:9 proportions) at a frame rate of 30 frames per second. To add some creative touches to movie recording, it also features a high-speed camera function**** for slow-motion playback of captured movie clips, and an interval movie function. A micro-HDMI terminal (Type D) is also provided on the camera body for simultaneous output of Full HD movie clips and sound to external audio-visual devices.
**** When this function is selected, the recorded size is fixed at 1280 x 720 pixels.

7. Triple anti-shake protection to prevent blurred images in all applications
(1) Pixel Track SR mechanism
When recording still images, this advanced shake-reduction mechanism effectively compensates for camera shake by digitally processing affected images.

(2) Digital SR mode
When the camera detects low-lighting conditions in still-image shooting, this mode automatically raises the sensitivity up to as high as ISO 6400, making it possible to use a higher shutter speed and effectively minimise the adverse effect of camera shake and subject shake when dealing with poor lighting conditions.

(3) Movie SR mode
During movie recording, this mode effectively compensates for the misalignment of images caused by camera shake through the use of exclusive software to produce beautiful, blur-free movie clips.

8. 2.7 inch LCD screen with Outdoor View Setting mode
The WG-50 comes equipped 2.7 inch LCD screen with horizontally extended 16:9 proportions and approximately 230,000 dots. The screen’s AR (Anti-Reflection) coating minimises annoying glare and reflections to deliver a sharp, clear on-screen image even in sunshine during outdoor shooting. It also comes equipped with such convenient features as the Outdoor View Setting mode, which easily sets the optimal screen brightness level for a given lighting situation.

9. Other features

  • A range of WG-series mount accessories (optional) for a range of shooting situations
  • Two remote control receptors (one in front and another in the back) to widen signal coverage
  • Macro stand (included) to maintain a minimum focusing distance of one centimetre to the subject during extended observation and shooting of macro images
  • High-speed Face Detection function to capture as many as 32 faces in focus in approximately 0.03 seconds (minimum); Smile Capture function to automatically release the shutter when the subject’s smile is detected
  • Outdoor friendly Style Watch function to display the time on the LCD monitor, using an extended push of the OK button when the camera’s power is turned off
  • Delay-free, push-button start of the playback mode, using an extended push of the playback button
  • Auto Picture mode to automatically select the most appropriate shooting mode from 16 different scene modes
  • A choice of 12 digital filters
  • Pet detection function to automatically detect the face of a cat or dog

Ricoh WG-50 specifications

Price
MSRP $ 279/£249
Body type
Body type Compact
Body material Composite
Sensor
Max resolution 4608 x 3456
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 4:3, 16:9
Effective pixels 16 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 17 megapixels
Sensor size 1/2.3" (6.17 x 4.55 mm)
Sensor type BSI-CMOS
Color space sRGB
Color filter array Primary color filter
Image
ISO Auto, 125-6400
White balance presets 6
Custom white balance Yes
Image stabilization Digital only
Uncompressed format No
JPEG quality levels Fine, normal, basic
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.) 28–140 mm
Optical zoom 5×
Maximum aperture F3.5–5.5
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lamp Yes
Digital zoom Yes (7.2X)
Manual focus Yes
Normal focus range 50 cm (19.69)
Macro focus range 1 cm (0.39)
Number of focus points 9
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fixed
Screen size 2.7
Screen dots 230,000
Touch screen No
Screen type TFT LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type None
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 4 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/4000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Auto
  • Program
Scene modes
  • HDR
  • Handheld Night Snap
  • Movie
  • High Speed Movie
  • Digital Microscope
  • Landscape
  • Flower
  • Portrait
  • Underwater
  • Underwater Movie
  • Interval Shot
  • Interval Movie
  • Surf & Snow
  • Kids
  • Pet
  • Sport
  • Night Scene
  • Night Scene Portrait
  • Fireworks
  • Food
  • Digital SR
  • Report
  • Green
Built-in flash Yes
Flash range 5.50 m (at Auto ISO)
External flash No
Flash modes On, off
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Self-timer
  • Continuous
  • Burst
  • Remote control
  • Auto Bracketing
Continuous drive 8.0 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 or 10 secs, remote)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±2 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±2 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)
Videography features
Format MPEG-4, H.264
Modes
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 120p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 60p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 30p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC card
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI Yes (micro-HDMI)
Microphone port No
Headphone port No
Remote control Yes (Wireless)
Physical
Environmentally sealed Yes
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description D-LI92 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 300
Weight (inc. batteries) 193 g (0.43 lb / 6.81 oz)
Dimensions 123 x 62 x 30 mm (4.84 x 2.44 x 1.18)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes
GPS None

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh releases Pentax 645Z and K-1 firmware updates and IMAGE Transmitter 2 software v2.3

22 Apr

Ricoh Imaging has released new firmware for its Pentax 645Z medium format camera and K-1 full-format DSLR. The new firmware makes the cameras compatible with the also freshly released version 2.3 of the company’s IMAGE Transmitter 2 software package.

The latter allows the cameras to  be controlled when tethered to a PC or Mac via USB cable and after the update now offers a range of new tethered control options, including drive mode, white balance, image format, size and quality, memory card slot selection, live view magnification and focus fine adjustment in live view. 

As before, you can also adjust essential settings, such as  aperture, shutter-speed, ISO and exposure compensation, or trigger the shutter. Image Transmitter 2 version 2.3 as well as firmware version 1.41 for the K-1 and 1.23 for the 645Z are now available to download on the Ricoh Imaging website.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh to show-off 4K-capable Theta 360-degree camera at NAB

21 Apr

Ricoh will be showcasing a prototype Theta 360 camera that can capture 4K clips and live-stream video at the annual NAB show next week. In addition to its video capture and streaming capabilities, the Theta concept will also have four microphones, allowing it to capture ‘spatial surround-sound audio.’

In an interview at Photokina last year Ricoh told our Richard Butler that putting such features into the current form factor would be difficult due to processing power and heat management, so it will be interesting to see how they pulled it off.

DPReview will be at NAB and will drop by the Ricoh booth to see if we can take a closer look.

Press Release

RICOH TO SHOWCASE THETA 360-DEGREE CAMERA WITH 4K VIDEO AND LIVESTREAMING AT 2017 NAB SHOW

WEST CALDWELL, NJ, April 20, 2017 — Ricoh today announced it will be showcasing a prototype of its newest Theta 360-degree camera, capable of capturing high-resolution 4K video in a single shot, at the upcoming 2017 NAB Show, April 24-27, in Las Vegas. The camera will be featured at the Ricoh booth, C11139, located in the Central Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center.

In addition to capturing 4K video at 30 frames per second, the new camera will enable 4K 360-degree livestreaming, and a built-in 4-channel microphone will record spatial “surround-sound” audio.

The new camera is expected to be launched later in the year.

Ricoh offers the industry’s most extensive line of spherical imaging cameras, known for their high image quality, sleek design and ease of use. First introduced in 2013, Theta cameras allow consumers to record fully spherical images that show the entirety of a scene in photos or videos. The camera line’s combination of small size, high quality imagery and incredible functionality are a result of Ricoh’s many decades of experience in advanced imaging and optical technologies. The company has long been a leader in professional printers and copiers, and is known for its high-quality optics and optical components. A key achievement with the Theta series is an ultra-small twin-lens folded-optical system capable of capturing two wide-angle images and then marrying them into a single spherical image.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh denies Nikkei report that it may leave camera business

14 Apr

Ricoh has issued a response to a report from the Nikkei Asian Review, denying that the company is considering leaving the consumer camera business. Ricoh’s statement says that it will focus its attention on ‘high added value products’ in its Pentax and GR lines. Additionally, the company says it plans to keep expanding its VR business, where it sees plenty of growth.

Nikkei’s article suggests the company considered, or is considering, a more drastic approach:

‘The Japanese company will radically review a production and manufacturing strategy centered on cameras for the retail market, including such brands as Pentax and GR. Options include withdrawing from this segment altogether.’

An investor relations presentation published by Ricoh today only directly mentions the company’s camera division once, indicating that Ricoh will ‘leave no stones unturned’ in examining losses in its camera business. But the overall tone of the document indicates that the company is looking to break from past approaches to structure and growth.

The Nikkei article and Ricoh’s statement seem to be in agreement that the company is looking to expand into commercial applications. Nikkei mentions that Ricoh plans to use spare capacity at compact camera production facilities to increase production of automotive products.

Below is Ricoh’s full statement addressing the article:

With regard to the article about RICOH today

Apr. 12, 2017
Ricoh Co.,Ltd.

Today there was an article saying that RICOH considers to shrink the camera business and withdraw from consumer products. This article is not based on RICOH’s official announcement.

RICOH is focusing its resource on the high added value products such as PENTAX and GR that are appreciated by the existing users and photo hobbyists. RICOH is also a market leader of input device? in the VR or AR market with its “RICOH THETA” where we can see rapid growth, and will keep on expanding the business even more in this field. In addition, RICOH will develop and expand the imaging business in the solution business field for corporate, by creating new market utilizing its own camera technology.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh R Development Kit 360 degree camera will be available for pre-order in May

28 Feb

Ricoh has released pricing and full specifications for the Ricoh R Development Kit 360 degree live streaming camera that was first shown to the public at CES earlier this year. The company has also announced it is starting to take pre-orders for the device on the Ricoh R website starting in May. The kit will be available at a price point of $ 499.

The RICOH R Development Kit is capable of live-streaming fully spherical, 360-degree video in 2K resolution at 30 frames per second. The footage is stitched on the device in real time to fit the standard Equirectangular Projection Format. Streaming video can be output via HDMI or USB, and, when using a power adapter, continuously up to 24 hours. The camera can also record onto a micro SD card. 

The kit consists of the camera, camera stand, a software development kit (SDK) as well as image-control tools and source code. Thanks to an open API the camera is controllable via USB. Ricoh says potential applications include live streaming of events, telepresence, computer vision and surveillance. Full specs are available on the Ricoh website. 

Press Release:

Announced at CES 2017, RICOH R Development Kit delivers up 24 hours of fully spherical live streams

TOKYO and BARCELONA (Mobile World Congress 2017, Hall 8.0 J3), February 27, 2017?Ricoh today announced it is taking pre-orders of the RICOH R Development Kit, featuring the industry’s first camera capable of delivering up to 24 continuous hours of fully spherical, 360-degree live video streams. Showcased at Mobile World Congress 2017, the camera can be pre-ordered from http://ricohR.ricoh, with shipments scheduled to start in May 2017. The sales price will be $ 499.

Using Ricoh’s fully spherical imaging technology, the RICOH R Development Kit can live-stream fully spherical, 360-degree images in 2K resolution at 30 frames per second. Unique to RICOH R technology is the stitching of video within the camera in real time to the Equirectangular Projection Format, which is the standard format for fully spherical images. Video is then output via HDMI® or USB, and—by using an AC power adapter– continuous, live streaming up to 24 hours is possible. The camera records onto a micro SD card, which enables the body to be extremely thin and lightweight.

The RICOH R Development Kit consists of the camera, camera stand, downloadable software development kit (SDK), plus image-control tools and source code. Using the camera’s open API and the “RICOH R Console” image-control tool source code available through GitHub, the camera can be controlled via USB, which will enable its use in a variety of environments and industries such as telepresence and computer vision.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

24 Feb

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

Ricoh has added two prime lenses to its full-frame lens roadmap for the Pentax K-1: the forthcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4 and 85mm F1.4. Although details are scant, we did sneak a peek at the 50mm, which was showcased in a plexiglass box on the show floor.

Here it is – the forthcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4 ‘reference lens’.

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

If you look closely at the gold ring on the lens barrel, a strip of tape has been used to cover up some lettering, after the lens name. We wonder whether it conceals ‘WR’. We’d expect flagship primes to be weather-sealed, but it’s possible that this aspect of the specification has yet to be finalized.

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

Although this appears to be a cosmetically (more or less) final lens, it stayed firmly under plexiglass. We asked really nicely, but this was as close as we could get. 

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

Designed to cover a full-frame imaging circle, the 50mm and 85mm primes will, according to Ricoh, deliver ‘high-contrast images and [a] beautiful bokeh (defocus) effect’.

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

The FA* denotes flagship, reference lenses, which should represent the pinnacle of image quality for the K-mount when they are eventually released. 

CP+ 2017: Ricoh teases upcoming D FA* 50mm F1.4

We’ll add more details (and images) if we can persuade someone to lift up the box and show us the lens at close quarters, but for now, here’s a picture of a Pentax KP that’s been cut in half, just to tide you over.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Ricoh announces Pentax KP with new Shake Reduction system and 24MP sensor

26 Jan

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Ricoh has announced the Pentax KP, the follow-up to the K-3 II, which features a new ‘high sensitivity’ 24MP sensor and improved in-body image stabilization system.

The new CMOS sensor brings with it a top ISO of 819,200 and an electronic shutter that tops out at 1/24000 sec (the mechanical shutter goes to 1/6000 sec). The KP uses the new 5-axis ‘Shake Reduction II’ IBIS system, first seen on the K-1 full-framer, which offers up to 5 stops of stabilization according to Ricoh. As with other Pentax models, the KP supports Pixel Shift Resolution as well as AA Filter Simulation. The KP uses the same SAFOX 11 autofocus system as the K-3 II, meaning that it has 27 points, 25 of which are cross-type.

The KP’s body is relatively compact, sealed against dust and moisture, and functional down to +14F/-10C. It has a pentaprism viewfinder with ‘nearly’ 100% coverage and a 0.63x equivalent magnification, as well as a tilting 3″ touchscreen display. A nice extra is the ability to change the camera’s grip, with three sizes to choose from.

Typical of Pentax DSLRs, the KP is heavily customizable and features both Sensitivity and Shutter & Aperture Priority modes, a star tracking feature and built-in wireless flash control. The KP has added new Motion and Depth-of-Field options to the already large selection of bracketing modes it’s inherited from its predecessors. It can capture Full HD at 60i, 50i, 30p, 25p and 24p. The KP can shoot continuously at up to 7 fps. It also has built-in Wi-Fi. Something the KP doesn’t have is an HDMI port, instead using something called SlimPort, which can send HD video over a microUSB port. If you want HDMI, you’re going to have to drop $ 25 on a dongle.

The KP’s battery life is rated at 390 shots/charge – which is on the low end for a DSLR – though an optional battery grip can hold an additional D-LI109 battery or the significantly more powerful D-LI90.

The KP will be available in your choice of silver or black in late February for $ 1099/£1099 body-only.

Ricoh Unveils Ultra-Compact PENTAX KP, a Weatherproof DSLR That Provides Outdoor Photographers with New Standard for Quality, Customization and Ease of Use

Heir to K-3 legacy, Slim-Body Camera Incorporates New Features and Controls Optimized to Deliver Outstanding Images, Even in the Most Challenging Conditions

First PENTAX APS-C Camera to offer Shake Reduction II

WEST CALDWELL, NJ, January 25, 2017—Ricoh Imaging Americas Corporation today announced the PENTAX KP, an ultra-compact and highly portable DSLR with features and controls that facilitate capturing outstanding images, even in the most demanding conditions. The PENTAX KP packs many of the advanced capabilities of the award-winning PENTAX K-3 series into a modern, slim-body design that lends itself to applications from casual snapshots to serious outdoor photography while mountain climbing or trekking. The PENTAX KP also adds a new generation of innovations including a new, highly sensitive APS-C CMOS sensor and is the first PENTAX APS-C camera to incorporate Shake Reduction II (SR II), which features a five-axis mechanism to compensate for camera shake up to 5 steps.

The new 24-megapixel CMOS sensor enables shooting in extremely low-light conditions, with sensitivity to ISO 819200, making the camera ideal for night photography. The PENTAX KP features an electronic shutter option in live-view to enable high-speed shooting up to 1/24,000-second, which greatly broadens shooting capabilities when using large aperture lenses to achieve a shallow depth of field on a bright sunny day.

The PENTAX KP’s compact body is the result of a complete internal re-design to produce an advanced DSLR camera with an extremely slim profile for optimal comfort and handling. The KP’s rugged exterior is dustproof and weather-sealed to enable use in the most challenging outdoor conditions. The camera will perform in temperatures as low as 14 degrees F (-10 degrees C).

The PENTAX KP incorporates additional advanced technologies and ease-of-use features that have long been the hallmark of PENTAX cameras and enable them to be used comfortably and reliably in a wide range of conditions. These include:

  • 5-Axis Shake Reduction System: The PENTAX KP is the first PENTAX APS-C DSLR to offer the new generation SR II system, which uses a five-axis mechanism to compensate for camera shake caused by horizontal and vertical shift (often generated in macro photography), roll (difficult to handle by lens-installed shake reduction mechanisms), as well as pitch and yaw. The SR II unit is controlled with great precision as soon as the camera’s power is turned on, providing a wide compensation range—as much as five shutter steps—to further expand the limits of handheld shooting. With the addition of an optional accessory GPS module (O-GPS1 GPS unit), the PENTAX KP, simplifies astro-photography, making it possible to record stars as points of light rather than star trails during extremely long exposures.
  • Pixel Shift Resolution: This acclaimed PENTAX technology enables producing color-accurate still-life subjects with the highest resolving power. The technology uses the KP’s in-body Shake Reduction System to move the image sensor in single-pixel increments, to capture four separate images that are subsequently combined into a single, high-definition image.
  • A vertical-tilt LCD monitor that facilitates high- and low-angle shooting.
  • A grip replacement system that lets photographers choose their preference of grip based on shooting style or lens choice. In addition to the standard grip that comes with the PENTAX KP, accessory grips include medium (M) and large (L) grips (these will come packaged with KP bodies sold in North America), as well as the optional D-BG7 Battery Grip.
  • Control panels, button settings and dial controls that can all be customized, based on a user’s preference.

“We designed the PENTAX KP to appeal to the world’s most discerning outdoor photographers, who will appreciate its rich and powerful feature set and rugged, compact design, whether they are shooting a landscape on a trek in Patagonia or capturing an eclipse,” said Kaz Eguchi, president, Ricoh Imaging Americas. “From Pixel Shift Resolution to our new generation of Shake Reduction, PENTAX proudly continues to lead the way in photographer-friendly innovation.”

| Pricing and Availability |

 The PENTAX KP camera will be available on February 25 for a suggested list price of $ 1,099.95 at www.us.ricoh-imaging.com as well as at Ricoh Imaging-authorized retail outlets throughout North America.

Main Features 

1?Super-high-resolution images assured by approximately 24.32 effective megapixels and super-high-sensitivity photography at a top sensitivity of ISO 819200

The PENTAX KP features a new-generation APS-C-sized CMOS image sensor with approximately 24.32 effective megapixels to produce super-high-resolution images. By coupling this sensor with an AA-filter-free optical design, it optimizes the image sensor’s imaging power to deliver well-defined images with true-to-life reproduction of gradation and texture. Thanks to the combination of the PRIME IV imaging engine and a state-of-the-art accelerator unit, it assures dependable, high-speed operation and highly effective noise reduction to optimize both image resolution and super-high-sensitivity performance. As the result, it allows the photographer to handhold it in snapshot photography of night scenes at the super-high sensitivity of ISO 819200.

2?Compact, portable body perfect for snapshots, with a weather-resistant structure for harsh outdoor shooting

After a thorough review of the camera’s internal structure, PENTAX designed a completely new body that was far more compact and slim than existing models to optimize the PENTAX KP’s performance, operability and portability. When combined with a compact, lightweight PENTAX-DA-series lens, it can be carried comfortably and effortlessly for a wide range of applications, from casual snapshots to serious outdoor photography while mountain climbing or trekking. Its front, back and bottom exterior panels are all made of durable, lightweight magnesium alloy. With 67 sealing parts applied across the body, it provides a dustproof, weather-resistant structure, with outstanding cold-proof performance at temperatures down to -10°C. Thanks to these features, the PENTAX KP performs superbly and dependably even in such demanding settings as in the rain or at locations prone to dust and freezing temperatures. 

3?A range of customization features, including an exchangeable grip

The PENTAX KP provides a grip replacement system for easy, quick change of a grip to accommodate the photographer’s shooting style or a mounted lens. In addition to the standard Grip S, it offers a choice of two replacement grips (Grip M and Grip L). It also provides a variety of customization functions to simplify and enhance camera operation, including Smart Function for speedy selection and easy setting of desired camera functions using the Fx (Function) and setting dials; and control panel customization to change the panel’s layout to suit the photographer’s preference. 

4?PENTAX-original SR II five-axis shake-reduction system featuring the Pixel Shift Resolution System

(1) In-body SR mechanism

Thanks to the built-in SR II shake-reduction mechanism, the PENTAX KP effectively minimizes camera shake and delivers sharp, blur-free images, even in camera-shake-prone conditions such as when using a telephoto lens, shooting low-light scenes without flash illumination, or photographing sunset scenes. In addition to more common camera shake caused by pitch and yaw, this five-axis mechanism also compensates for camera shake caused by horizontal and vertical shift (often generated in macro photography) and camera shake caused by roll. It assures a compensation effect of approximately five shutter steps (CIPA standard compliant, smc PENTAX-DA 18-135mmF3.5-5.6ED AL [IF] DC WR?f=135mm) — a level equivalent to that of PENTAX’s flagship model — to expand the limits of handheld photography. When taking a panning shot, this mechanism efficiently controls the SR unit to compensate for all affecting factors without requiring any switching action. 

(2) Pixel Shift Resolution System

The PENTAX KP features Pixel Shift Resolution System,* the latest super-resolution technology, which captures four images of the same scene by shifting the image sensor by a single pixel for each image, then synthesizes them into a single composite image. Compared to the conventional Bayer system, in which each pixel has only a single color-data unit, this innovative system obtains all color data in each pixel to deliver super-high-resolution images with far more truthful colors and much finer details than those produced by conventional APS-C-sized image sensors. To make this system more useful with a wider range of scenes and subjects, the PENTAX KP also provides ON/OFF switching of the motion correction function,** which automatically detects a moving object during continuous shooting and minimizes negative effects during the synthesizing process.

(3) PENTAX-original AA filter simulator

By applying microscopic vibrations to the image sensor unit at the sub-pixel level during image exposure, the PENTAX KP’s AA (anti-aliasing) filter simulator*** provides the same level of moiré reduction as an optical AA filter. Unlike an optical AA filter, which always creates the identical result, this innovative simulator lets the user switch the AA filter effect on and off and adjust the level of the effect, making it possible to set the ideal effect for a particular scene or subject based on the prevailing photographic conditions.

* When using this system, the user is advised to stabilize the camera firmly on a tripod. When a moving subject is captured in the camera’s image field, its image may not be reproduced clearly, either in part or as a whole.

** The movement may not be sufficiently corrected when the object is moving in a certain direction and/or pattern. This function does not guarantee that the movement is properly corrected with all subjects.

*** This function works more effectively with a shutter speed of 1/1000 second or slower. This function may not be compatible with some shooting modes, including the Pixel Shift Resolution System.

5?Electronically controlled shutter unit for super-high-speed shooting at 1/24000 second

The PENTAX KP’s shutter unit combines a reliable mechanical shutter mechanism (with a top speed of 1/6000 second) with an electronically controlled shutter mechanism.* The electronic shutter mode provides a super-high shutter speed of 1/24000 second with reduced noise and vibration at shutter release, making it ideal for low-noise, low-vibration shooting in Live-view and mirror-up applications. The camera also provides a high-speed continuous shooting function with a top speed of seven images per second.

* In the electronic shutter mode, the camera’s SR II mechanism and AA filter simulator are inoperable. During high-speed continuous shooting, the subject may suffer some deformation.

6?Optical viewfinder with nearly 100% field of view

Within its compact body, the PENTAX KP incorporates a glass prism finder featuring the same optics and coatings as those used in higher-class models. With a nearly 100-percent field of view and magnification of approximately 0.95 times, it provides a wide, bright image field for easy focusing and framing.

7?High-speed, 27-point autofocus system with the SAFOX 11 module

The PENTAX KP features the high-speed SAFOX 11 phase-matching AF sensor module to deliver dependable, responsive autofocus operation. Of its 27 focus sensors, 25 are cross-type sensors positioned in the middle to assure pinpoint focus on the subject at a minimum brightness level as low as -3 EV. A completely new, much-improved algorithm assures better autofocusing accuracy and speed than models equipped with the conventional SAFOX 11 module. The camera also provides useful customization features to assist in autofocus operation, such as a choice of operation modes—focus-priority, release-priority or advance-speed-priority—and the Selected-area Expansion function to automatically refocus on a subject when it moves away from the initial point.

8?Full HD movie recording with a range of functional settings

The PENTAX KP captures flawless, high-resolution Full HD movie clips (1920 x 1080 pixels; 60i/30p frame rate) in the H-264 recording format. It also provides an external microphone terminal for manual setting of the audio recording level and monitoring of the sound pressure level for microphone input. In addition to various visual effect modes available during movie recording,* it features a range of movie recording functions, including a 4K Interval Movie mode that connects a series of 4K-resolution still images (3840 x 2160 pixels) at a fixed interval to create a single movie file, and the Star Stream mode to record the traces of stars in the Interval Movie mode. 

* When a special visual effect is applied, the frame rate may differ depending on the selected effect mode.

9?Vertical-tilt-type LCD monitor

The PENTAX KP’s 3.0-inch LCD monitor has approximately 921,000 dots, and provides a vertical tilt function to facilitate high- and low-angle shooting. In addition to its wide-view design, it features an air-gapless construction, in which the air space between LCD layers is eliminated to effectively reduce the reflection and dispersion of light for improved visibility during outdoor shooting. It also comes equipped with such convenient features as: the Outdoor View Setting mode, which instantly sets the optimum monitor brightness level for a given lighting condition; and a red-lighted monitor display function, which facilitates monitor viewing when the photographer’s eyes have become accustomed to a dark location during nighttime photography.

10?PENTAX Real-time Scene Analysis System

Supported by the combination of the approximately 86,000-pixel RGB light-metering sensor and the high-performance PRIME IV imaging engine, the PENTAX Real-time Scene Analysis System accurately and efficiently analyzes such factors as a brightness distribution in the image field and the subject’s primary color and motion. By adopting a breakthrough artificial intelligence technology called deep learning to its image detection algorithm,* this system assesses each individual scene more accurately while selecting the most appropriate exposure level and finishing touch for a given scene.

* Deep learning technology is available when the exposure mode is set to Scene Analyze Auto, or when the Custom Image mode is set to Auto Select. 

11?Other features

  • Switching lever to activate various settings during still-image and Live-view shooting and movie recording
  • New Motion Bracketing and Depth-of-field Bracketing functions to capture three images of same scene by automatically shifting aperture and/or shutter-speed settings in user-selected steps.
  • Wireless LAN connection to support operation with smartphones and tablet computers
  • DR II?Dust Removal II? mechanism to shake dust off from the image sensor surface using ultrasonic vibrations
  • Clarity control and Skin Tone correction functions, two of the latest image processing technologies developed by RICOH Central Laboratory
  • Compatibility with the optional O-GPS1 GPS Unit for the recording of shooting position data and simplified astronomical photography
  • A selection of imaging tools, such as Custom Images, Digital Filters
  • Compatibility with the optional PENTAX IMAGE Transmitter 2 tethering software

Optional Accessories 

Grip M (O-GP1671) and Grip L (O-GP1672)

Designed for exclusive use with the PENTAX KP camera body, these grips can be easily replaced with the standard Grip S (O-GP167) to accommodate the photographer’s shooting style or a mounted lens, or improve the camera’s operability and holding comfort. (Note: In North America, these accessory grips will come with the PENTAX KP.)

D-BG7 Battery Grip

Designed for exclusive use with the PENTAX KP, this battery grip features a dustproof, weather-resistant structure, and provides an extra set of control buttons (shutter release, AF/AE lock, exposure compensation/Fx3, and green), and a pair of electronic dials to facilitate vertical-position shooting. It comes with the Grip L for improved handling when a telephoto or large-aperture lens is mounted on the camera. In addition to the exclusive D-LI109 Lithium-ion Battery, it can also be powered by the large-capacity D-LI90 Lithium-ion Battery (a dedicated battery tray included), which is used to power the PENTAX K-1 and K-3II digital SLR cameras.

Pentax KP specifications

Price
MSRP $ 1099 (body only)
Body type
Body type Mid-size SLR
Body material Magnesium alloy
Sensor
Max resolution 6016 x 4000
Other resolutions 4608 x 3072, 3072 x 2048, 1920 x 1280
Image ratio w:h 3:2
Effective pixels 24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 25 megapixels
Sensor size APS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Processor PRIME IV
Color space sRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter array Primary Color Filter
Image
ISO Auto, 100-819200
White balance presets 9
Custom white balance Yes (3 slots)
Image stabilization Sensor-shift
Image stabilization notes 5-axis, up to 5 stops
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Best, better, good
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
  • Raw (Pentax PEF or DNG)
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lamp Yes
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 27
Lens mount Pentax KAF2
Focal length multiplier 1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Tilting
Screen size 3
Screen dots 921,000
Touch screen Yes
Screen type TFT LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage 100%
Viewfinder magnification 0.95×
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 30 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/6000 sec
Maximum shutter speed (electronic) 1/24000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Sensitivity priority
  • Shutter priority
  • Aperture priority
  • Shutter & aperture priority
  • Manual
  • Bulb
Built-in flash Yes
Flash range 6.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flash Yes (via hot shoe)
Flash modes Auto, auto w/redeye reduction, flash on w/redeye reduction, slow sync, trailing curtain sync, manual, wireless
Flash X sync speed 1/180 sec
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Self-timer
  • AE bracketing
  • DoF bracketing
  • Motion bracketing
  • Mirror-up
  • Multi-exposure
  • Interval shooting
  • Interval composite
  • Interval movie record
  • Star stream
Continuous drive 7.0 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 or 12 secs)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±5 (2, 3, 5 frames )
WB Bracketing Yes
Videography features
Format MPEG-4, H.264
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I supported)
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI No (requires SlimPort adapter)
Microphone port Yes
Headphone port No
Wireless Built-In
Wireless notes 802.11 b/g/n
Remote control Yes (via remote cable or smartphone)
Physical
Environmentally sealed Yes
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description D-LI109 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 390
Weight (inc. batteries) 703 g (1.55 lb / 24.80 oz)
Dimensions 132 x 101 x 76 mm (5.2 x 3.98 x 2.99)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes
GPS Optional
GPS notes O-GPS1

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Throwback Thursday: Stylus-toting, web-browsing Ricoh RDC-i700

25 Dec

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These days, we take things like touchscreen displays and Wi-Fi for-granted. But what if I told you about the existence of a camera in the year 2000 that had a huge touchscreen with a stylus, could create photo galleries and upload them to the Internet (email too) and even had a built-in web browser? This wasn’t a concept – it was the Ricoh RDC-i700.

Before we get to its communication and ‘data management’ functions, let’s talk basics. The i700, which cost $ 1200 when it was introduced, had a 3.3 megapixel CCD, 35-105mm equiv. lens, 1cm macro capability and a whopping video resolution of 320 x 240. It had a hybrid AF system consisting of ‘passive’ and TTL modes, an optical viewfinder and that monster 3.5″ LCD. Photos could be saved internally or on a CompactFlash card.

With the pen and touchscreen the i700 let you create databases to hold your photos, put them into templates that you’ve brought over from your PC (in Word or Excel format) and create galleries that you can then put on the Web. Naturally, you could also use the pen to scribble on your photos.

The RDC-i700 has more attractive menus than on some current models! Ahh, dial-up.

Now the crazy stuff. The RDC-i700 had a PCMCIA slot which could hold a compatible modem. This allowed you to e-mail photos to friends, upload galleries that you’ve created and send them to a modem-equipped PC, bypassing that silly Internet thing. If you’ve used the camera’s ‘Text Mode’ you can fax the results to your local Kinkos (gotta keep the throwback theme going here). To top it off, you could check out your GeoCities page via the i700’s built-in web browser. 

The RDC-i700 certainly wasn’t a camera for everyone, summed up nicely in Imaging Resource’s review:

If you need the communications capability the i700 offers (and have the telecommunications degree to get it all working), there’s literally nothing like the i700 on the market. Nothing. Buy it. On the other hand, if all you care about is snapping attractive high quality digital photos in an uncomplicated fashion, you can find all you need in a pure camera costing hundreds of dollars less.

Read Imaging Resource’s Ricoh RDC-i700 Review

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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