Ricoh WG-5 GPS Review

November 4, 2015 | Amy Davies | |

Image Quality

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

Directly from the Ricoh WG-5 GPS, images display a satisfying amount of punch in terms of vibrancy, especially when shooting in good light. In good light,  the overall impression of detail is also good.  If you examine images at 100%, it's possible to see that even at low sensitivities there is a fair degree of image smoothing - however, it's not anything which is unusual for a compact camera of its kind, and unless you're planning on severely cropping an image it shouldn't be an issue.

That said, if you move up throughout the sensitivity range, the amount of image smoothing and the introduction of noise starts to become apparent at small sizes from ISO 1600 - so it's best if you can use ISO 800 or below for the majority of your shots. It's possible to shoot at ISO 3200 and ISO 6400, but the large amount of colour noise present at these settings, means that they are best avoided.

Under artificial light, the automatic white balance setting copes pretty well to produce accurate colours. Similarly, all purpose metering helps to produce fairly accurate exposures in all but the most high contrast conditions.

Images taken at the far reach of the telephoto optic retain a good amount of detail. Again, if you examine at 100%, it's possible to see that they are slightly softer than images taken at the wide angle of the lens. Digital zoom is usable if you're planning on printing or sharing at small sizes, and with the relatively optical zoom, it's handy to have a digital available.

When you take a photograph with the 1cm macro focusing activated and using the camera stand, while the Ricoh WG-5 GPS is capable of resolving fine details, the edges of the image display a fair amount of distortion which detracts from the overall effect of the image.

Noise

There are 7 ISO settings available on the Ricoh WG-5 GPS. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting.

ISO 125 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

iso125.jpg iso200.jpg
   

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

iso400.jpg iso800.jpg
   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

iso1600.jpg iso3200.jpg
   

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

 
iso6400.jpg  

Focal Range

The Ricoh WG-5 GPS's 4x zoom lens provides a focal length of 25-100mm in 35mm terms, as demonstrated below.

25mm

100mm

focal_range1.jpg focal_range2.jpg

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 just a little soft at the default sharpening setting. You can change the in-camera sharpening level if you don't like the default look.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

sharpen1.jpg sharpen1a.jpg
   

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

sharpen2.jpg sharpen2a.jpg

Chromatic Aberrations

The Ricoh WG-5 GPS handled chromatic aberrations excellently during the review, with very limited purple fringing present around the edges of objects in high-contrast situations, as shown in the examples below.

Chromatic Aberrations 1 (100% Crop)

Chromatic Aberrations 2 (100% Crop)

chromatic1.jpg chromatic2.jpg

Macro

The Ricoh WG-5 GPS allows you to focus on a subject that is just 1cm away from the camera. 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

Macro (100% Crop)

macro1.jpg macro1a.jpg

Flash

The flash settings on the Ricoh WG-5 GPS are Flash-on, Flash-off and Red-eye reduction. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (25mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (25mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off - Telephoto (100mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (100mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. As you can see, both the Flash On or the Red-eye-Reduction settings caused a tiny amount of red-eye.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
flash_on.jpg flash_on1.jpg
   

Red-eye Reduction

Red-eye Reduction (100% Crop)

flash_redeye.jpg flash_redeye1.jpg