Joshua Waller looks at the Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Zoom - the unit is a compact ultra zoom lens unit for the Ricoh GXR system, featuring a 10 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor. Nb. Due to similarities between the system, this review is based on the Ricoh GXR M Mount review.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Features
The Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm lens unit gives the most optical zoom available on the Ricoh GXR system and with built in vibration correction provides a useful go anywhere camera, albeit with a compact camera sensor, in comparison to the larger APS-C sized sensor in a number of the other GXR units.
The P10 lens unit is one of five different lens units available for the GXR body, with the others being the 28mm f/2.5 lens unit (left), Ricoh GXR M Mount A12 (middle), P10 28-300mm VC unit (above right), 50mm macro and 24-72mm (not shown).
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Zoom
The idea behind the system is that you buy the GXR body and lens unit, then when you are familiar with the system and controls you can switch to a different lens when needed. Much like an interchangeable lens camera, however the lens and sensor units are said to be optimised for each other, with the P10 with 10.7x optical zoom lens and compact sensor being much more compact than a 10x zoom lens would be on a large sensor Digital SLR or Compact System Camera.
10 megapixel Backlit CMOS sensor, 1/2.33 type
10.7x optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28-300mm
5fps continuous shooting speed in RAW
ISO100 - ISO3200
VC / Vibration Correction sensor
3 inch screen, 920k dots
Manual Controls, RAW support
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Handling
Ricoh GXR Body
Handling / Controls / Buttons - The body of the GXR system is the same regardless of what lens and sensor unit you attach to the camera and therefore this enables you to become familiar with the camera buttons and controls. The camera features a number of customisable function buttons and an ADJ / Adjust dial that lets you quickly set the most common options such as white balance, ISO, image quality, colour and focus point. The front scroll wheel lets you quickly scroll through the options.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC
The P10 lens unit is quite compact and features a removable lens cap. There is a ring that can be removed around the end of the lens, to allow additional adapters. The zoom control on the back of the body is used to control the zoom lens.
Ricoh GXR Body Rear
Menus - The menus are the same regardless of what sensor / lens unit you use on the camera, however some of the features and options alter slightly depending on the module, for example some have extended ISO settings, or high speed shooting and HDR (in the case of the P10). The menus are very logically laid out and the high resolution screen makes reading them easy as the text is very clear. The menu system is split into three main areas: photo shooting menu, key custom options and the setup menu. The key custom options menu lets you customise what the ADJ menu options are, what the Function, Up, Down and Zoom buttons do. The ADJ button can also be set to quickly change the ISO setting without having to press it down.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC
Battery Life - Battery life alters depending on what module is connected and with the M Mount it is rated at 330 shots. We managed to take 320 photos using mostly the M Mount, with the P10 and A12 28mm unit used as well.
Speed - We tested each camera's performance at focusing, shutter response, shot to shot time, continuous shooting etc and have posted the results below. To test this we took 6 or more shots and calculated the average, so that consistent results were produced, we also made sure to test all the cameras at the same time to ensure the cameras were being tested under the same conditions.
A12 M Mount
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo
Shot to Shot (without flash)
Shot to Shot with Flash
Continuous Shooting (JPEG)
Continuous Shooting (with Flash)
Continuous Shooting (RAW)
2.5fps (4 shots)
3fps 4 shots
5fps (5 shots)
The camera provides fast shutter response, reasonable focus speeds (although a quicker hybrid focus system as found in the Ricoh CX5 / CX6 would be a welcome addition) and high speed shooting when shooting RAW. The camera only shoots at 0.6 seconds between shots when shooting JPEG, but switch to RAW and the camera will shoot at 5fps, which seems a little odd.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Performance
Click to view larger or click "Hi-Res" to view full size sample photos. Additional photos and product shots can be found in the Equipment Database for the Ricoh GXR P10 - where you can add your own review and photos.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Sample Photos
Sample photos - Flash performance is good with minimal red-eye and good skin tones. Detail and colour are good giving pleasing shots.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Lens test images
Lens test images - Macro performance is excellent with the camera focusing on subjects as close as 1cm away from the front of the lens. Image quality is good whether using the lens at the wide or telephoto end, with low purple fringing and minimal chromatic aberration. Detail is good with only very slight loss of quality at the very corners of images.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC ISO test images
ISO noise performance - Noise is lowest at ISO100, although it can be seen in darker areas when viewing images at full size. At ISO200 noise increases slightly but not drastically. At ISO400 noise becomes more noticeable, although the camera is still capable of producing good colour and detail. ISO800 shows an increase in noise and a slightly loss of detail, although results are still useable. At ISO1600 noise becomes intrusive and image quality takes a dive with a noticeable reduction in image quality, however images may still be useable when resized. At ISO3200 images become dominated by noise and image quality suffers dramatically with a loss of colour, contrast and detail, therefore this setting is best avoided.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC White-balance test images
Auto White Balance performance - AWB produces images with a yellow cast under tungsten lighting and using the tungsten preset produces much more accurate colours. Under fluorescent lighting the camera produces good results with just a slight colour cast. Detail is good even in the shadow areas.
Digital Filters / Panoramic mode, Scene modes: The GXR P10 does not feature many digital filters or much in the way of creative effects, however it does feature the following scene modes: Movie, Portrait, Sport, Landscape, Nightscape, Skew Correct mode, Zoom Macro, Dynamic Range.
Video: 1280x720 / 30fps is available on each camera, with the P10 allowing optical zoom before recording. The video mode is accessed through the Scene mode on the dial, which makes it not the most easy to access.
Value For Money
The Ricoh GXR plus P10 28-300mm module costs £250 for the GXR body and £205 for the P10 lens unit, making it £450 / or alternatively the camera and lens unit can be bought as a kit for around £390. If you already have the GXR body with a different lens, then the P10 unit adds additional zoom, however you could easily buy a different pocket zoom camera for well under £200, or even Ricoh's own Ricoh CX5 or CX6 instead.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Verdict
The Ricoh GXR P10 lens unit gives a useful zoom range and with built in vibration correction can provide usable shots in less than ideal light. The biggest competitor to the P10 lens unit comes from Ricoh itself, with the recently updated Ricoh CX5 and CX6 giving it some real competition, especially as the latest model, the CX6, now has manual controls, although if you want to use RAW then you would still need to get the P10, or an alternative pocket zoom. For owners of the GXR system already, the P10 lens unit provides a good level of zoom and gives a lot more versatility than the rest of the lenses available.
The Ricoh P10 would make a decent addition to the GXR system if you already have the body, but otherwise the Ricoh CX5/CX6 compacts would do just as well.
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Pros
10.7x optical zoom lens
GXR Body is very good
Good image quality
Ricoh GXR P10 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VC Cons
Optical zoom can't be used during videos
5fps shooting RAW only, not JPEG
ISO3200 best avoided
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