I Have Found My Everyday Carry
Say hello! to the Ricoh GR III
For months and months my husband has been banging on about the Ricoh GR IIIx and how he’d like to get it for his EDC. And I listened, all the while thinking to myself, “why does he need an everyday carry when he shoots with Fuji, which is a tiny system already?” (until I was shooting with Fuji and realizing it wasn’t all that small). And that’s about as much thought as I put into it, because in the end, if my husband wants the camera, I won’t stand in the way of him getting it. The way I see it, he works his ass off and deserves to spend some cash every once in a while on things that bring him joy. But, he talked himself out of it and that was that. Or so we thought….
All the while, I was still looking for the elusive EDC/travel camera for myself, with no luck. I had an image in my head of what I wanted from that camera, and let me tell you, it was all very unreasonable. There was no way I was going to get myself a pocketable camera (I’m talking truly pocketable!) that was also at least an APS-C sensor, had high quality compact interchangeable lenses (I’m talking pancake lenses here), flip out screen (not articulating), very small & light, with a button and menu system layout that works for me. There was just no way that was going to happen, and I was starting to realize that and get discouraged.
I mean hello, I sold my Canon 5D Mk IV and all my lenses in search of this system, thinking one system could do it all. I then bought into the Fuji system with the purchase of the Fuji XT-4 and some expensive lenses such as the 16-55. And guess what? That was quite a heavy setup! I wasn’t happy with it at all, but tried to convince myself that I would adapt. I did not. So, I sold the XT-4, and thankfully got almost what I had paid for it, since it had less that 700 actuations. Sheesh! The lenses though will remain in Brandon’s gear bag.
At this point I had to admit that there isn’t one system for every occasion. At least not for me. I needed to consider having a decent camera body and lens line up for landscapes & the like (what I call serious photography) and a separate camera for my EDC & travel. So, I did buy another full frame mirrorless camera (new but an older model) that came with a kit lens (it’s the only way you could buy it at this point) from a different brand. I also purchased that brand’s 50mm lens, because kit lenses suck. It is a cheap setup, because the camera is several generations old, which meant I didn’t go above what funds I had left from all the sell offs, and still had wiggle room in the budget to get an EDC if one came along. I’m not quite ready yet to say what brand I have bought into this time, as I’m still trying to test it out. I’m also less convinced these days that I actually need a full frame camera, and I’m exploring APS-C options with that brand as well. We’ll see how it goes.
And that left me still looking for an everyday carry that was better quality than my iPhone, but just as convenient to use. A camera I could have with me always; in my purse or pocket. Which leads me to a few weeks ago when James Popsys uploaded a video about buying a Ricoh GR IIIx. I told Brandon that the video would probably make him want to buy the camera again, and it did, but it also made me want to buy the camera. It’s like a light went off in my head and I was all, that’s what I need! It isn’t at all what I was searching for, as far as the unreasonable list of requirements had been, but it is what would actually work for me in what I want to use the camera for. But, the GR IIIx is a 40mm equivalent and I usually prefer to shoot wide and crop if needed. So, I started researching the GR III instead, which has a 28mm equivalent lens, and I came upon hoards of YouTube videos about it.
The one that finally convinced me to get the GR III was a video by Sean Tucker where he talks about the reasons he shoots with the GR III and all the reasons Fuji didn’t work for him for an EDC, and I was like PREACH! He had some really great things to say about this tiny camera, and addressed most of my concerns. I was convinced by that point, and all that was left to do was to find one in stock. Not an easy task in today’s lack of inventory world. I did look for it used, but those things sell like hotcakes. I put in some inquiries to ads, but the cameras would already be sold. So yeah, I finally found one in stock, and ordered it new.
And so far, I’m loving it and I think I can safely say that I have found my EDC. I took it out a few times the weekend I got it and then again this past weekend and have really enjoyed the experience. Here are a few sample snaps from those outings. I’m just trying to get a feel for the camera at this point, but I find it has great colors with no weird color cast, ahem SONY! It’s super sharp and very intuitive to use. It truly is a pleasure to take photos with this little camera.
So yeah, I’m pleased with it, and happy to have finally found something that will work for me. It’s nice to finally be able to end a search that has consumed me so much for so long. Now all that’s left to do is figure out my main setup, and I’ll be set. And honestly, if you have followed me for any amount of time, you know my main setup never stays the same for too long. BUT, I am trying to remedy that.
I’ve been working on letting go of some of the nonsense messaging I picked up from photo communities along my journey, and to realize that just because one person thinks full frame is the only way to be a serious photographer, doesn’t make it true. I’m finally ready to let go of that, and embrace a setup that works for me. And with this shift in thinking, I have opened up the door to more options. Options that still give me amazing quality images, all while not breaking the bank or my back in the process. So, though the journey has been long and littered with great cameras that just didn’t work for me, I’m positive I am on the right track now, and I am armed with the knowledge of what I need in a system and what I can live without.
But for now, I have welcomed into my family of cameras the Ricoh GR III and all that is left to do is name it. So, drop your name recommendations in the comments below!
And until next time… be loving, be kind, be better!