Ricoh GR Digital IV review

In a world of plain vanilla compact cameras with 'me too' spec sheets, the Ricoh GR Digital IV stands out as a camera that feels as if it's been designed by photographers for photographers.

The level of customisation possible on the camera is nothing short of stunning, and the creative options, such as multi-exposures, time interval shooting and retro image presets, are addictive.

We liked

The Ricoh GRD IV has hidden depths and an intuitive user interface that rewards you if you're prepared to spend time with it.

We disliked

Results from the small sensor predictably suffer as sensitivity increases, and that price tag makes it look overpriced and underpowered compared to its APS-C and Micro Four Thirds rivals.

Final verdict

The Ricoh GR Digital IV's fixed lens means that it's not a camera for everyone - this is a compact for people who like to frame with their feet, and get close to the action. You do have to work a little harder to get the best image quality out of the camera, though, and the small size of the sensor is limiting.

The bloated price is also a sticking point. Although the Ricoh GR Digital IV's street price is closer to £420 than the full launch price of £499, it's still a lot of money to pay for a camera with a 1/1.7-inch sensor.

Especially because the Ricoh GR Digital IV faces stiff competition from the likes of the Fuji FinePix X10, with its APS-C sensor and fixed 23mm lens, the Olympus XZ-1 and the Sigma DP2x.

However, if photography for you is more about the journey than the destination, then the Ricoh GR Digital IV should prove a worthy companion. Few cameras in this area of the market are as compact and easy to live with.