We just started testing cameras, and our test bench v0.7 is rather simplistic, so we decided to launch without text in the test boxes. If you have any suggestions on what to improve, let us know here. As we gather your suggestions, we plan on making more frequent changes to our methodology and we'll be able to add text to the reviews in the near future.

RICOH GR III Camera Review

Tested using Methodology v0.7
Reviewed Sep 22, 2021 at 10:25 am
RICOH GR III Picture
7.3
Travel Photography
8.0
Landscape Photography
6.2
Sport & Wildlife Photography
4.6
Vlogging
4.1
Studio Video
4.3
Action Video
Body Type
Compact
Mirrorless
Yes
Sensor Size
APS-C
Tested Lens
Built-In Lens

The RICOH GR III is a compact APS-C camera with a fixed prime lens and minimalist design aimed at street photographers. It's remarkably portable and can easily fit into a pocket or small bag, but it may be too small for those with larger hands to use comfortably. Its built-in lens has a 28mm equivalent focal length, which is a wide enough angle to capture everyday moments and street scenes, and it has a crop function for its sensor if you prefer to shoot at 35mm or 50mm. The lens has a built-in neutral density filter to reduce the amount of light entering the camera, and its 24.24-megapixel sensor delivers excellent image quality with minimal visual noise at higher ISO settings; this makes it well-suited to shooting in more dimly-lit conditions. That said, its autofocus system isn't very effective, and it has a very limited battery life, though this can vary with real-world usage. It also isn't well-suited to shooting video, as it lacks 4k recording capability, delivers poor video quality in FHD, and has very few inputs and outputs.

Our Verdict

7.3 Travel Photography

The RICOH GR III is decent for travel photography. It delivers excellent image quality and performs well even in low light. It's remarkably compact and easy to take with you on the go. It also feels well-built and has a very bright screen that can easily overcome glare in sunny conditions. Unfortunately, its battery life is poor, and its autofocus system isn't very reliable with tracking moving subjects.

Pros
  • Excellent image quality.
  • Incredibly portable.
  • Bright screen easily combats glare.
Cons
  • Poor battery life.
  • Unreliable autofocus.
  • May be uncomfortable for those with larger hands.
8.0 Landscape Photography

The RICOH GR III is great for landscape photography. It delivers excellent overall image quality and has great dynamic range to bring out a wider range of detail in landscape shots. While its built-in lens has a fixed focal length, it has a wide enough field of view for landscapes, and its built-in neutral density filter can help you take longer exposure shots. It's also remarkably compact, so it's easy to take with you to remote shooting locations. However, its minimalist design may not be the most comfortable to shoot with, depending on your ergonomic preferences.

Pros
  • Excellent image quality.
  • Incredibly portable.
  • Built-in ND filter.
  • Great dynamic range.
Cons
  • May be uncomfortable for those with larger hands.
6.2 Sport & Wildlife Photography

The RICOH GR III isn't suitable for sport and wildlife photography. While it delivers excellent image quality, it has a limited continuous shooting mode that can only shoot at 4 fps. Its fixed focal length isn't well-suited to this use since you can't zoom in on far-away subjects, and depending on what aperture you use, its shutter speed is also limited and may not be fast enough for very quick action.

Pros
  • Excellent image quality.
  • Incredibly portable.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Poor continuous shooting speed.
  • Fixed focal length.
  • Unreliable autofocus.
  • Shutter speed is limited depending on aperture setting.
4.6 Vlogging

The RICOH GR III is a poor choice for vlogging. While it's very portable and easy to carry around, it can't shoot in 4k, and its FHD video quality is underwhelming. It also has a fixed screen, so you can't easily monitor yourself while recording. Also, its autofocus system doesn't support any tracking features in video, making it nearly impossible to keep yourself in focus while vlogging with the lens facing you. It also tends to overheat and shut down when recording continuously for longer periods.

Pros
  • Incredibly portable.
Cons
  • Fixed screen.
  • Can't shoot 4k video.
  • Poor FHD video quality.
  • Doesn't support auto tracking.
  • Battery overheats easily when recording video.
4.1 Studio Video

The RICOH GR III isn't suitable for studio video. While it has an easy-to-use menu system with extensive options, the camera can't shoot video in 4k, and its FHD video quality is poor. It doesn't support autofocus tracking when shooting video either, and it only has a USB-C port, with no HDMI port, microphone jack, or headphone jack. It has a limited recording time limit and tends to overheat and shut down when recording for longer periods.

Pros
  • Incredibly portable.
Cons
  • Can't shoot 4k video.
  • Poor FHD video quality.
  • Doesn't support auto tracking.
  • Battery overheats easily when recording video.
4.3 Action Video

The RICOH GR III isn't suitable for action video. While it's very portable, it isn't designed for helmet or chest mounts. It's not rated to be water-resistant either. It can only shoot video in FHD, and video quality is poor overall, although it does an excellent job smoothing out camera shake.

Pros
  • Incredibly portable.
Cons
  • Can't shoot 4k video.
  • Poor FHD video quality.
  • Doesn't support auto tracking.
  • 7.3 Travel Photography
  • 8.0 Landscape Photography
  • 6.2 Sport & Wildlife Photography
  • 4.6 Vlogging
  • 4.1 Studio Video
  • 4.3 Action Video
  1. Updated Sep 22, 2021: Review published.
  2. Updated Sep 20, 2021: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
9.3
Design
Portability
Height 2.5" (6.3 cm)
Width 4.3" (10.9 cm)
Depth 1.3" (3.4 cm)
Volume
14.2 in³ (233.5 cm³)
Weight
0.57 lbs (0.26 kg)
Weight With Lens
0.57 lbs (0.26 kg)

You can see the camera's portability with its lens fully extended here.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

  • Magnesium alloy body with a minimalist design
  • Easy for dust to get through the lens mechanism and into the camera
  • Front lens ring is easily detached and may be easily lost or broken
  • Mode dial is sturdy and locks into place to prevent accidentally changing camera modes
  • Buttons feel solid
  • Rear dial feels a bit flimsy
  • USB-C port covered by a simple rubber flap
  • SD card/battery compartment is covered by a locking hinged door

Design
Body
Water Resistance
No
Rugged
No
Hot Shoe
Yes
Customizable Button
Yes
Command Dial
3
Tripod Mount
Yes
Lens Mount
No Lens Mount
Built-In Flash
No
Design
In The Box

  • RICOH GR III camera
  • DB-110 battery
  • AC adapter
  • USB-A to USB-C cable
  • Hot shoe cover
  • Wrist strap
  • User manual

7.0
Design
Ergonomics & Comfort
Hand Grip: Small Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Medium Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Large Hand
No
Hand Grip: Extra-Large Hand
No

  • Camera is compact and may be too small for those with larger hands to hold comfortably
  • Unlike many other cameras, the 'Fn' button doesn't bring up the quick menu but rather is a customizable button
  • The 'ADJ' button brings up a custom options menu
  • Easy to reach buttons on camera with your thumb, and overall it's easy to use with one hand if needed
  • Dedicated buttons for shutter speed and aperture make it easy to adjust these settings on the fly
  • Need to press 'ISO' button on the rear dial to change ISO
  • Fixed screen makes it more difficult to shoot from lower angles and still see what you're capturing

8.0
Design
Menu System
Guide Mode
No
App Name
Image Sync

  • Extensive menu with a lot of options, but it uses simple language and a simple interface, making it easy to find settings
  • Pressing the 'ADJ' dial gives you access to a customizable quick menu, which you can see here
  • Can navigate the menu using the touchscreen
  • No guide mode to explain settings to novice users

Design
Viewfinder
Type
No Viewfinder
Advertised Coverage
N/A
Advertised Resolution
N/A
Advertised Magnification
N/A
5.0
Design
Screen
Screen Articulation Type
No Articulation (Fixed Screen)
Screen Max Brightness
1,367 cd/m²
Advertised Resolution
1.037 million dots
Size
3.0" (7.6 cm)
Touchscreen
Yes
Design
Sensor
Sensor Type
CMOS
Advertised Effective Pixels
24.24 MP
Processor
GR ENGINE 6
Extended ISO Minimum
N/A
ISO Minimum
100
ISO Maximum
102,400
Tested Firmware
Ver. 1.41
3.5
Design
Battery
Battery Type
Ricoh DB-110
USB Charging
Yes
Use When Charging
No
Advertised Battery Life In Photo
200 photos
Tested Battery Life In Video
35 min

Note: We experienced a few shutdowns due to overheating while testing the camera's battery performance. You may experience the same when recording video continuously for longer periods, after which you have to wait for it to cool down before using it again.

6.6
Design
Lens
Lens Type
Built-in
Maximum Aperture
2.8
Max Aperture (Full Frame Equivalent)
f/4.3
Minimum Focal Length
18.3 mm
Maximum Focal Length
18.3 mm
Max Focal Length (Full Frame Equivalent)
28 mm
Luminance
77.8%
Light Falloff
51.2%

Note: The RICOH GR III has a built-in neutral density (ND) filter for its lens that affects how much light the camera lets in, allowing you to shoot at slower shutter speeds for longer exposure shots or use a larger aperture than you would be able to otherwise.

Photo
Photo
Photo Features
JPEG File Format
Yes
RAW File Format
DNG
Shutter
Mechanical
Minimum Shutter Speed
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
1/4,000 s
Silent Shooting
Yes
HDR
Yes
Focus Peaking
Yes
Zebra Pattern
No
Histogram
Yes
Time Lapse
Yes

Note: The camera can only achieve its maximum 1/4000 shutter speed when using an f/5.6 aperture or higher. When using an aperture between f/5.0 and f/4.5, the max shutter speed is 1/3200, and when using f/4.0 and below, the max shutter speed is 1/2500. This camera has a few additional features that may interest photographers, including an 'AA Filter Simulator' setting that simulates the effect of an anti-aliasing filter to help eliminate false colors and reduce moire. It also has an electronic crop feature that crops the sensor to a 50mm or 35mm field of view.

5.2
Photo
Shooting Speed
Low Speed Continuous
4 fps
High Speed Continuous
4 fps
Silent Shooting Continuous
4 fps
Raw Buffer Size
21 RAW Photos
JPEG Buffer Size
10,000 JPG Photos
Buffer Empty Time
3 s

Note: The RICOH GR III only has one continuous shooting drive mode that shoots at 4 fps, but for consistency, we've simply noted the continuous shooting speed in each field.

4.8
Photo
Autofocus
Advertised Coverage
N/A
Advertised Focus Points
N/A
Manual Focus Assistance
Yes
Face Detection Distance
127" (323 cm)
Eye Detection
No
Face Tracking Success Rate
34.6%
Object Tracking Success Rate
37.6%

Note: Due to the camera's fixed focal length and max f/2.8 aperture, we had to conduct this test with a 3.5cm - 4.1cm depth of field, which deviates from our usual methodology of using a 1.2cm - 1.3cm DOF. Also, RICOH has announced that this camera will receive eye detection in a future firmware update. As of writing, it only supports face detection, but we'll retest the camera with new firmware updates as they're released.

6.6
Photo
Image Stabilization
In Body Image Stabilization
Yes
Minimum Shutter Speed Achieved
1/30 s
8.7
Photo
Image Quality
Dynamic Range At ISO 100
8.86 f-stops
Color Accuracy (dE2000)
5.3
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 800
39.19 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 800
1.829 pixels
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 1600
38.64 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 1600
1.839 pixels
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 3200
37.52 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 3200
1.904 pixels

ISO Setting Sample Photo
ISO 100 Photo
ISO 200 Photo
ISO 400 Photo
ISO 800 Photo
ISO 1600 Photo
ISO 3200 Photo
ISO 6400 Photo
ISO 12800 Photo
ISO 25600 Photo
ISO 51200 Photo
ISO 102400 Photo

Note:This camera has a built-in neutral density (ND) filter. We tested image quality with the filter set to 'Auto' since that's the camera's default setting. Disabling the ND filter doesn't affect the image quality enough to change its image quality score, but if you'd like to compare how it performs, we measured the following with the ND filter set to 'Off':

  • Dynamic Range: 8.6 f-stops
  • Color Accuracy: 5.60
  • JPEG Sharpness At ISO 800: 1.995 dB
  • JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 800: 39.9 pixels
  • JPEG Sharpness At ISO 1600: 1.857 dB
  • JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 1600: 39.21 pixels
  • JPEG Sharpness At ISO 3200: 1.876 dB
  • JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 3200: 37.87 pixels

8.7
Photo
Luminance Noise
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 100 40.27 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 200 38.97 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 400 37.54 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 800 36 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 1600 34.09 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 3200 31.47 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 6400 28.6 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 12800 25.85 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 25600 23.64 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 51200 20.12 dB

Note: The RICOH GR III has a built-in neutral density (ND) filter. We measured the above results with the ND filter set to 'Auto' since that's the camera's default setting. The difference it makes in luminance noise is very minor, but for comparison, you can see the graph achieved with the ND filter disabled here.

Sample Gallery
Sample Gallery
The Skate Park

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

This camera only shoots in a 3:2 or 1:1 aspect ratio natively. We cropped the photos to a 16:9 aspect ratio for comparability across reviews. You can see the original here.

Sample Gallery
The Polish Church

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

This camera only shoots in a 3:2 or 1:1 aspect ratio natively. We cropped the photos to a 16:9 aspect ratio for comparability across reviews. You can see the original here.

Sample Gallery
The Studio

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

This camera only shoots in a 3:2 or 1:1 aspect ratio natively. We cropped the photos to a 16:9 aspect ratio for comparability across reviews. You can see the original here.

Sample Gallery
The Stairway

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

This camera only shoots in a 3:2 or 1:1 aspect ratio natively. We cropped the photos to a 16:9 aspect ratio for comparability across reviews. You can see the original here.

General Video
General Video
Video Feature
Full HD Video
Yes
4k Video
No
6k Video
No
Clean HDMI Output
No HDMI
Advertised Max Chroma Sampling Over HDMI
No HDMI
Advertised Max Bit Depth Over HDMI
N/A
Log Picture Profile
No
Recording Light
No
General Video
Audio
Audio Test Sample
Audio Recording
Stereo
Microphone Level Display
No
General Video
Video Exposure Assistant
Zebra Line
No
Histogram
Yes
Waveform
No
General Video
Recording Format And Compression
MP4 H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
MP4 H.265 / HEVC
No
MOV H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
Yes
MOV H.265 / HEVC
No
AVCHD H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
All-I Compression
No
4k Video
0
4k Video
4k Frame Rate
240 fps In 4k
No
120 fps In 4k
No
60 fps In 4k
No
30 fps In 4k
No
24 fps In 4k
No
Crop At Max Available fps
N/A
N/A
4k Video
4k Video Autofocus Performance
Eye Detection In 4k
N/A
Face Detection In 4k
N/A
Face Tracking In 4k
N/A
Object Tracking In 4k
N/A
N/A
4k Video
4k Video Stabilization
In Body Video Image Stabilization In 4k
N/A
Walking Test In 4k
N/A
Running Test In 4k
N/A
Crop
N/A
0
4k Video
4k Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In 4k
N/A
Bitrate Minimum In 4k
N/A
Chroma Sampling In 4k
No
Bit Depth In 4k
N/A
Record Time Limit 0 min
Overheat Recording Interruption
No
N/A
4k Video
4k Video Quality
Low Light Capability In 4k
N/A
Test Scene Extract In 4k
N/A
4k Rolling Shutter
N/A
Full HD Video
8.5
Full HD Video
FHD Frame Rate
240 fps In FHD
No
120 fps In FHD
No
60 fps In FHD
Yes
30 fps In FHD
Yes
24 fps In FHD
Yes
Crop At Max Available fps
1 x

Note: When recording video, this camera incurs a 1.2x crop compared to its photo mode.

0
Full HD Video
FHD Video Autofocus Performance
Eye Detection In FHD
No
Face Detection In FHD
No
Face Tracking In FHD
0
Object Tracking In FHD
0

Note: While this camera supports continuous autofocus in video mode, it doesn't have any automatic tracking features, meaning the user has to manually select different focus points using the touchscreen. In 'Auto' mode, the focus kept chasing and pulsing, and it was difficult for the lens to establish focus.

8.5
Full HD Video
FHD Video Stabilization
In Body Video Image Stabilization In FHD
Yes
Walking Test In FHD
5.12 pixels/frames
Running Test In FHD
13.05 pixels/frames
Crop
1
7.3
Full HD Video
FHD Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In FHD
42 Mbps
Bitrate Minimum In FHD
16 Mbps
Chroma Sampling In FHD
4:2:0
Bit Depth In FHD
8
Record Time Limit 25 min

Note: The recording time limit is either 25 minutes or a 4GB file size, depending on which you reach first.

4.8
Full HD Video
FHD Video Quality
Low Light Capability In FHD
6.0
Test Scene Extract In FHD
4.8
FHD Rolling Shutter
6.60°
Storage And Connectivity
Storage And Connectivity
Storage
Card 1 Slot
SD Card UHS-I
Card 2 Slot
No 2nd Card Slot

Note: In addition to an SD card slot, the RICOH GR III has about 2GB of internal memory, which may be useful if you run out of space on your SD card on the go.

4.5
Storage And Connectivity
Input / Outputs
USB
USB-C
HDMI
No
Headphones
No
Microphone
No Microphone input
Wi-Fi
Yes
Bluetooth
Yes

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The RICOH GR III comes in two color variants: 'Black' and the 'Metallic Gray' Street Edition. We tested the Black variant, but we expect the Street Edition to perform similarly.

Let us know if you come across another variant or your RICOH GR III doesn't correspond to our review, and we'll update it.

You can see our unit's label here.

Discussions