Ricoh PX Review

4.0
July 28, 2011 | Mark Goldstein |

Image Quality


All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 16 megapixel Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 5Mb.

The Ricoh PX produced images of above average quality during the review period. The Ricoh PX's main drawback in terms of image quality is noise, with the relatively slow speed of ISO 200 already showing some significant noise and blurring of detail. The noise and loss of fine detail get progressively worse as you go from ISO 400 to ISO 800, with the fastest settings of 1600 and 3200 not really worth using at all.

The Ricoh PX handled chromatic aberrations pretty well with limited purple fringing effects appearing only in high contrast situations. The 16 megapixel images were just a little soft straight out of the camera at the default sharpen setting of Normal and either require some further sharpening in an application like Adobe Photoshop, or you should set the in-camera sharpening to Sharp. The night photograph was OK, with the maximum shutter speed of 8 seconds allowing you to capture just enough light for most situations.

Macro performance is a highlight, allowing you to focus as close as 3cms away from the subject, although there is a lot of lens distortion and shadowing at such a close distance. The built-in flash worked well indoors, with no red-eye and good overall exposure.

It's easy to tell which image was taken with Super Resolution turned on and which ones with it turned off, particularly if viewing onscreen at 100% magnification. The difference isn't quite so apparent on a print up to A3 in size, but I'm not convinced enough to recommend it except when you really need the extra reach - it undoubtedly improves on the digital zoom, but not so much that I'd regularly use it.

Noise

There are 6 ISO settings available on the Ricoh PX. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting, with noise reduction set to Off and the strongest setting of MAX.

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

Focal Range

The Ricoh PX's 5x zoom lens offers a fairly versatile focal range, as illustrated by these examples:

28mm

140mm

Super Resolution

This makes a standard image look like a higher resolution one by processing the contour areas, texture areas and smooth areas individually.

Super Resolution - Off (100% Crop)

Super Resolution - On (100% Crop)

Sharpening

Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a little soft at the default sharpening setting of Normal. You can change the in-camera sharpening level to one of the preset levels (Sharp, Normal or Soft) if you don't like the default look.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

   

Chromatic Aberrations

The Ricoh PX handled chromatic aberrations well during the review, with limited purple and green fringing present around the edges of objects in certain high-contrast situations, as shown in the examples below.

Example 1 (100% Crop)

Example 2 (100% Crop)

Macro

The Ricoh PX offers a Macro setting that allows you to focus on a subject that is 3cms away from the camera when the lens is set to wide-angle. The first image shows how close you can get to the subject (in this case a compact flash card). The second image is a 100% crop.

Macro Shot

100% Crop

Flash

The flash settings on the Ricoh PX are Auto flash, Red-eye Flash, Flash On, Flash Synchro and Flash Off. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Suppressed Flash - Wide Angle (28mm)

Forced Flash - Wide Angle (28mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Suppressed Flash - Telephoto (140mm)

Forced Flash - Telephoto (140mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. As you can see, neither the Flash On or the Red-eye Flash settings caused any red-eye.

Forced Flash

Forced Flash (100% Crop)
   

Red-eye Reduction Auto

Red-eye Reduction Auto (100% Crop)

Night

The Ricoh PX's maximum shutter speed is 8 seconds via the Time Exposure main menu option, which is fairly good news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 8 seconds at ISO 100.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Creative Scene Modes

The Ricoh PX offers a number of creative scene modes, including Miniaturize, High Contrast B&W, Soft Focus, Cross Process and Toy Camera.

Off

Miniaturize

   

Toy Camera

High Contrast B&W

   

Soft Focus

Cross Process
   
Black&White Sepia

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