Ricoh WG-6 Review

Ricoh WG-6 Review - The Ricoh WG-6 is a tough, wateproof camera, with a 5x optical zoom lens, a 3inch screen, and 4K video recording. 6 LED lights surround the lens to aid macro photography.


|  Ricoh WG-6 in Compact Cameras
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Ricoh WG 6 (9) (Large)

 

Quick Verdict

The Ricoh WG-6 looks good on paper but can struggle in low-light conditions, due to a 20mp sensor, and a lens that's not going to let in as much light as the competition. In bright sunny conditions colour reproduction is good. However, it's difficult to find many redeeming features that make it stand out from the competition, apart from the 6 LED lights surrounding the lens, which are unique to the camera. The Ricoh WG-6 surprisingly lacks Wi-Fi, and doesn't feature optical image stabilisation.

+ Pros

  • 5x optical zoom lens
  • Good colour reproduction
  • 4K video recording
  • GPS built-in
  • Good macro performance

- Cons

  • No panoramic mode
  • Some purple fringing visible
  • Optical zoom unavailable during video recording
  • Digital Shake Reduction
  • No built-in Wi-Fi

 

Ricoh WG 6 (13) (Large)

The Ricoh WG-6 is Ricoh's premium waterproof, tough camera, and replaces the WG-5, although there are a number of changes that make it quite different to the WG-5, including a new design. The 4x optical zoom f/2.0 lens of the WG-5 has been replaced with a 5x optical zoom f/3.5 lens, and there's a 20mp BSI CMOS Sensor, 4K video recording, and built-in GPS.


Ricoh WG-6 Features

Ricoh WG 6 (5) (Large)

The Ricoh WG-6 uses a 20mp 1/2.3inch BSI CMOS sensor, with an ISO range of ISO125 to ISO6400. 3fps continuous shooting is available, but is on the slow side. The camera features a 5x optical zoom lens, equivalent for 28-140mm (in 35mm equivalent terms), with an aperture of f/3.5-5.5. There's 4K video recording, plus FullHD video with and without HDR, plus high-speed video recording at a resolution of 720p. 

The WG-6 is waterproof to 20m (65.6ft), shockproof from 2.1m, crushproof up to 100kgf, freezeproof to -10C, and dustproof.

There are only a small handful of waterproof cameras to choose from currently available, so let's quickly have a look at the options available:

Panasonic Lumix FT7 Ricoh WG-6 Nikon Coolpix W300 Olympus TG-6
20mp 20mp 16mp 12mp
4.6x, f/3.3-5.9 5x, f/3.5-5.5 5x, f/2.8-4.9 4x, f/2.0-4.9
31m  20m 30m 15m
4K video 4K video 4K video 4K video
10fps continuous shooting 3fps 7fps 20fps
Wi-Fi, EVF GPS GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth GPS, Wi-Fi
£189-199 £349 £389 £449


There is an impressive macro focus distance of 1cm, and the camera lets you use 1.8x optical zoom. You can get very close macro photos.

There are a number of scene modes, and there are two underwater scene modes available: underwater photo and underwater movie. There is no built-in help.

There's a filter thread on the front of the camera, and you can use this to attach the macro stand (placing the camera on this puts the camera at it's closest focus distance). The 3inch screen has a resolution of 1040K dots, and has an anti-reflective coating. 

 

Ricoh Wg 6 Vs G900
Ricoh WG-6 Vs G900

 

There's also the G900 version which offers resistance to chemicals, as well as camera memos, survey slates, watermark options, skew correction, internal memory (around 6.5GB), image modification check, barcode mode, plus password protection for features. More details on this can be found on Ricoh Japan

There is a G900 SE version offering Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC built-in. 

 

Ricoh WG 6 (11) (Large)

There's a range of accessories available including:

  • Wide conversion lens (0.8x for 20-22mm equivalent)
  • Silicon jacket
  • Camera case
  • Waterproof Remote control
  • Floating wrist strap

The camera has built-in GPS so that you can log your journey, as well as add location information to your photos. There's also an electronic compass. 

Ricoh WG 6 (3) (Large)

Key Features

  • 20mp 1/2.3inch BSI CMOS sensor
  • 5x optical zoom lens, 28-140mm equivalent, f/3.5-5.5
  • 3inch screen, 1040K dots
  • 20m waterproof
  • 2.1m shockproof
  • -10C freezeproof
  • 100kg crushproof
  • 4K UHD 30fps video recording
  • FullHD video 30fps (HDR available)
  • GPS Built-in
  • 3fps continuous shooting
  • ISO125-ISO6400
  • 1cm macro
  • Underwater scene modes
  • Available in black or orange
  • Buy now on Amazon UK, Amazon USA

Ricoh WG-6 Handling

Ricoh WG 6 (10) (Large)

The Ricoh WG-6 features a fairly standard top plate featuring the on/off button, the shutter release and the mode dial. The shutter release button is quite tough to press, although you do get used to this after a while. 

The mode dial features a dedicated video setting, which makes it easier to access video settings and modes. There are two custom modes on the dial. 

There's a tough rubber grip on the front, as well as on the back for your thumb. The camera is mostly plastic, but with an aluminium metal front panel. The camera feels solidly built, and with the weight of 246g it feels substantial. 

The front has a filter thread, for attaching the macro ring accessory - but this could also be used to attach other accessories, or your own filters if you wanted.

 

Ricoh WG 6 (7) (Large)

On the back there is a 4-way controller, which has shortcuts to flash, self-timer, macro (and other focus options), as well as GPS (which seemed to do nothing when we used it). Zoom control on the back is a little small, but easy to press.

The 3inch screen resolution is 1040K dots, and viewing angles are good, for the 3:2 aspect ratio screen. You can change the display, and show a dual-axis electronic level on the screen if you want. You can boost the brightness for outdoor viewing, and you can also switch off the screen if you want.  

There is a locking battery and memory card compartment underneath, with a single lock, instead of the two found on other cameras. In here you'll also find (micro) HDMI and USB Type-C connections. 

In the box there's a full printed manual, which is rare these days! 

Ricoh say the WG-6 has been designed so that it can be used with gloves on, and the buttons are of an average size. Not as small as some other cameras. 

The video button can be switched off, and then you can use the button as an ADJ button, giving you quick access to settings. To then access the video mode, you switch to the video mode on the mode dial and start and stop video recording with the shutter release button. 

The menus are quite clear, although the scene mode icons are quite small, and these could be improved with larger icons, as well as allowing you to scroll from one line to the next, instead of making you press the down button to go to the next row. Built-in help would be good as well. 

GPS is built-in with support for GLONASS, QZSS+ SBAS technologies. You can view the GPS display as: LAT/LON, UTM, MGRS. The camera will record a GPS log, with GPS lock, GPS time adjustment, GPS data imprint, and UTC data imprint. There's also a built-in Electronic Compass giving you the compass heading: Cardinal, Degrees, Cardinal/Degrees Declination, and Compass data imprint.

Ricoh WG 6 (8) (Large)

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 340 shots according to Ricoh / CIPA test results, which is good, although we'd recommend a spare battery if you want to shoot more. The battery can be charged in-camera, with the provided USB Type-C cable. The battery appears identical to the one found in the previous camera, the Ricoh WG-5, and the one used in the Olympus Tough TG-6, the Olympus LI-92B, so if you ever struggle to find one, then you can also look for an alternative. 


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