The Ricoh GRD4

This is not a review but an ongoing journey with this camera at my side. I’m not interested in comparing this to the GRD3 or anything else. What I am interested in, is the way the GRD4 works with my vision.

There is a new found sense of freedom for me. I’m not saying that the GXR doesn’t set me free, I’m simply stating that the GRD4 fits in my pocket. Doing that creates a sense of freedom because it’s always there and at the ready. What that means is….the camera remembers the last settings before being powered off or going to sleep. I can’t do that!

We all know that Ricoh has the finest most intelligent User Interface of any camera. So as shooters, we now have a camera that won’t intrude on the process of making images. I have a white camera because I look more like a tourist then with a black one. I find that getting close is easier then before because the white camera has a very innocent look to it. Besides that I just wanted the white version because it was more sexi. Ok, hey….hey….it’s a sexi litte thing dammit!


I’m pretty close to this guy and he didn’t wake as I moved thru his space. Of course that’s not in the Ricoh Firmware, the silent approach, but it is important because I didn’t have to look at my camera at all to make the photo. I can change anything on the GRD4 without looking at the screen. It’s a great interface.

I use snap focus most times. If I’m at f5.6, I’m good for about 1.6′ to infinity. I use M mode because I can set the camera to Auto ISO Hi 1600 and then…. I can do something like this… 1/125 f5.6. The camera will set the ISO to get proper exposure and that lets me choose the f stop and the shutter speed. This is a dream setup. I’ll usually maintain f8 or f5.6 to hold my Hyper Focal distance and I choose a shutter speed so that I won’t get too much blur unless I want it.

The macro mode is very useful and just requires a simple press on the dial. The lens is corrected beautifully and of course is a GR lens.

This is macro mode. The lens was very close to the flower. LIke really close. I handheld the camera and it’s ok.

The point is that, I saw this image in my head. It was of course the flower giving me the energy but it all came together very easy and the camera just did what it was supposed to do. 5 seconds later I made a photo of my cat Barsik about 20′ away. Just a click and that was all that was required.

Some call this camera a P&S. I guess for photography buffs as we called them in the 60’s and 70’s, it is. For shooters, it’s about as serious a camera as one would ever need.

14 thoughts on “The Ricoh GRD4”

  1. Even with a large and multi buttoned camera with all the bells and whistles you still point your camera in a direction and shoot it to get a photograph. We at least witness less constrains, weight, and can stroll more freely.

  2. reminds me of one of the flowers that daido moriyama shot long time ago. Everything on the GRD just works. The light weight and steady grip is a big plus in terms of handling. Other than upgrading to the latest model, I’d not ever sell my GRD 🙂

    1. Alan, thanks. My advice to you is to put the GRD on the shelf, out of sight or you’ll never use the X2.
      Of course that advice is impossible to follow. It shall be interesting to see how you handle both cameras……
      You are lucky to have to real winners….enjoy….

      1. actually my the GRD has been kept in my dry box ever since I bought my X2. It’s the only way to get myself familiarize with the focal length and just stick with it. Same for any other cameras.

  3. excellent post, long a fan of the Ricoh I still use the GRD II I just read your post on the RX100 also, another camera I am enjoying at the moment. Like your approach on Zone focusing I’m goiing to use it next week in NYC

    1. Thanks for the comments and thoughts. Please feel at home….
      I am still using the GRD4 and the RX100 but not as much as the Ricoh. If you get to Philly, let me know and you can try out the RX100…..
      seeya around…. don

  4. The tunnel pict is one of the few cases where blown-out highlights at the opening magnifies the visual message. I bet many would give a caption ” there`s light at the end of tunnel for everybody”

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