Ricoh, who rock some seriously solid cameras, announced a new and novel approach to the digital camera space yesterday, the GXR. Unlike traditional DSLRs, the GXR, which is more digital point and shoot, has a removable lens/sensor system. For the consumer, that means you can upgrade not only the optics of the camera, but its ability to capture high rez photos without buying a whole new back or system.
Take for instance the two lens/sensors to be launched. The 24-72mm-equivalent f2.5-4.4 lens includes a 10 megapixel sensor that can capture VGA movies, while the second module, a 50mm-equivalent f2.5 macro lens, can capture 12.3 megapixel photos and 720p video (and more).
But there are drawbacks. The camera ain’t cheap – $549 for just the body – and each lens/sensor costs over $400 as of right now. So without trying to wax too philosophical, the debate really lies within what kind of consumer you are. Would you prefer to have a set of lenses that you can use on a wide variety of cameras, or a camera that has a wide array of lenses that can only be used with one camera?
Update: Ricoh might build a printer module for the GXR.
Video description by Which.co.uk after the ‘leap’