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August 20, 2009

New Ricoh CX2 grows into a superzoom

This new camera was leaked a couple of days ago but the wave of Canon news and anticipation blocked out the sun. But now it is officially out, and Ricoh's new CX2 "grows" into a superzoom (10X+ zoom ratio), continuing to show promise for their newly launched CX-series.

As you may recall, some of the earlier Ricoh mid-range cameras (in the R-series) were of the 28-200mm (equivalent), but now Ricoh has jumped to the next logical level, the 28-300mm (equivalent). With sensor-shift image stabilization of course.

Unlike the new Canons of yesterday with the rather slow "machine-gun" mode, the CX2 does 5fps!

Other notable features include some megapixel restraint with 9-megapixels (using a 10mp 1/2.3" CMOS sensor), a generous 3-inch (920K dots) display, 1cm macro, and a reasonable 290 CIPA with its DB-70 Li-Ion battery. Reasonable considering that it is powering a 3-inch display and a 10.7X zoom lens and it has no OVF.

It includes a lot of the features carried forward from the CX1, including DR double-shot, AE/AF target-shift, and more.

This now officially enters the fun-zoom arena, towards the high-end, considering the expected price, but it remains a mid-range camera, since, despite its numerous features, it does not have RAW, hot-shoe or even the ASM in PASM.

Speaking of price, Photoscala says it is 350 euro with a September release and DigiCam Review says it is 300 GBP. There is no price or availability indication in the US market yet, where the Ricoh cameras are only carried by a 3+1 online retailers. The starting price for its predecessor, the CX1 was $380, and although it may feel like it came out a long time ago, it was actually announced just in February 2009.

It will be available in standard black and silver body-colors, but also in an interesting gray-pink two-tone, which you can see right below.

Ricoh CX2 front view

CX2 Talk in the Ricoh-blogo-sphere
Ricoh may have a fraction of the market-share of the big names, but it certainly has an active blog presence among photographers who love their Ricoh digital camera experience. Here is some of their coverage on the camera!

The Ricoh GR Diary discusses this new announcement and opines on how it compares to the CX1 and the expected feature upgrades that did not happen.

Michael Aulia, who just bought the CX1, is comparing the specs between the CX1 and CX2 on his blog.

Forum Reactions to the CX2
Check out the RicohForum for a trio of discussions on the camera, under the "Topic" segment!

There's also a couple of discussions on the leak at the dpreview Ricoh forum, look for the "CX2" titles in the discussion threads!

Further Reading
+ Ricoh Global
+ CX2 (and other Ricoh camera) brochures (CX2 = 6 PDF pages)
+ Bonus: Ricoh annual report
+ Ricoh Japan, the initial production output is a healthy 50,000 units/month [New!]

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