GX100 color failure?

Started 9 months ago | Questions
rhlounsbury
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GX100 color failure?
9 months ago

My GX100 may have finally given up the ghost after 6+ years.  I am wondering if anyone else has experienced similar symptoms and has discovered a miracle cure...

A little while ago the camera started adding a vibrant (bilious?) green cast in areas of images where colors or density transitioned... light to shadow.  Further testing indicates that blue in the scene translates to maxed-out green.  Light greens in the scene (little/no blue in them) translate to beige.

The green does not appear in the live image on the LCD (even with a half-press of the shutter button), but it does appear in the live image in the EVF.  Once the picture is taken, the green is recorded for all posterity in the image file.

I tried removing the EVF; changing the memory card; changing the battery; updating the (ancient) firmware to 1.51; setting white balance manually with a grey card...  All to no avail.

Possible cause or mere coincidence:  just before the problem began, my original Ricoh batteries had given up on the idea of holding a charge, so I purchased a couple of 3rd party replacements (BTR-CGAS005-J, advertised specifically for the GX100).  I do not have enough evidence to lay this at the doorstep of the new batteries... but perhaps a caution for others?

I fear that some internal microcircuit has gone kaput and the camera is done for.  Any counsel to the contrary will be welcomed.  Thanks!

Bob

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Martin Setvak
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

Bob, I use non-original, 3rd parties batteries with both of my GX100 most of the time I have these cameras, and encountered no similar problem so far. I would try taking a simultaneous JPG+DNG images to see if the problem appears also in the DNG files, or perhaps in JPGs only - at least to see if it is a software or hardware problem.

Martin

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Martin Setvak
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cgarrard
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It's not batteries
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

rhlounsbury wrote:

My GX100 may have finally given up the ghost after 6+ years. I am wondering if anyone else has experienced similar symptoms and has discovered a miracle cure...

A little while ago the camera started adding a vibrant (bilious?) green cast in areas of images where colors or density transitioned... light to shadow. Further testing indicates that blue in the scene translates to maxed-out green. Light greens in the scene (little/no blue in them) translate to beige.

The green does not appear in the live image on the LCD (even with a half-press of the shutter button), but it does appear in the live image in the EVF. Once the picture is taken, the green is recorded for all posterity in the image file.

I tried removing the EVF; changing the memory card; changing the battery; updating the (ancient) firmware to 1.51; setting white balance manually with a grey card... All to no avail.

Possible cause or mere coincidence: just before the problem began, my original Ricoh batteries had given up on the idea of holding a charge, so I purchased a couple of 3rd party replacements (BTR-CGAS005-J, advertised specifically for the GX100). I do not have enough evidence to lay this at the doorstep of the new batteries... but perhaps a caution for others?

I fear that some internal microcircuit has gone kaput and the camera is done for. Any counsel to the contrary will be welcomed. Thanks!

Bob

But just in case, please post a sample image so I can look further into it. I'm shooting with a GX100 all the time right now.

Likely, the sensor is giving up the ghost or the processor is having issues. Good thing is that GX100's are a good price these days :).

Carl

http://www.photographic-central.blogspot.com (Gear reviews)
http://www.carlgarrard.blogspot.com/ (Best work compilation)
Also formerly AlphaMountWorld.com (Now off the web)

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rhlounsbury
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

Thanks to Carl & Martin for your experience that the batteries are probably innocent bystanders.

Carl, per your suggestion I tried shooting both raw and jpeg file formats... same results in both. The live view on LCD prior to taking shot is perfectly OK; the color effect appears only after shot is taken.  This implies that the problem may not be the sensor itself?

Here are a couple of sample shots:

Shot on kitchen counter with LED lighting. Note color chart, on which the light blue squares have gone vibrant green.  The countertop and  backsplash are white in real life.

Outdoors on a sunny day, sunlight & shade, black car on asphalt

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cgarrard
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

rhlounsbury wrote:

Thanks to Carl & Martin for your experience that the batteries are probably innocent bystanders.

Carl, per your suggestion I tried shooting both raw and jpeg file formats... same results in both. The live view on LCD prior to taking shot is perfectly OK; the color effect appears only after shot is taken. This implies that the problem may not be the sensor itself?

Here are a couple of sample shots:

Shot on kitchen counter with LED lighting. Note color chart, on which the light blue squares have gone vibrant green. The countertop and backsplash are white in real life.

Outdoors on a sunny day, sunlight & shade, black car on asphalt

Yep either the sensor or processing circuitry but likely the sensor.

Not much you can do about that. I don't know if the CRIS camera center in Arizona can fix that or not or if the price of fixing it would cost you more than a really good condition used one. I just picked up a GX100 w the EVF for 149.00 and its in like new condition.

Carl

http://www.photographic-central.blogspot.com (Gear reviews)
http://www.carlgarrard.blogspot.com/ (Best work compilation)
Also formerly AlphaMountWorld.com (Now off the web)

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rhlounsbury
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to cgarrard, 9 months ago

Thanks, Carl.  I think you are right... something fairly major inside has fried.  I'll check with CrisCam, but they'll most likely have to replace the main board.  Given your report of current prices for good condition GX100's it may make better sense to simply replace the whole camera.

Bob

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schaki
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

Weird. I've not read a lot or anything about sensor failures for GX100 but some rare failures for the GRDI. As others have said a used GX100 might be your best option but be aware of possible dust issues which might be visible if you use apertures like 4.5 or slower. The GX100 doesn't have a good reputation for dust, unfortunately.

Other used options might be Samsung EX1 or the newer EX2f which have very good 24-72mm with faster widest aperture at both ends of the zoom. The zoom in GX100 is good but dated in terms of widest apertures. Otoh competing cameras do not have as good UI as GX100.

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RunStrom
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to schaki, 9 months ago

Another Gx-100 replacement camera is going to be hard to find. A second hand Gx-200 will give you a few more features, and a new Sony Rx100 will give superior images. Whatever p&s you get consider the operating use of the camera. The Gx-100 is a joy to use with its simple menus and custom settings. This is why I have not upgraded mine yet even after 4 years as its still a joy to use.

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rhlounsbury
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

Thanks to all for your feedback.  I think that we are all agreed that the GX100 is a really nice camera to use.  I have loved being able to make quick adjustments with my fingertips.  My GX100 has been a loyal companion and superb camera and I am sorry to see it go.

The worst part is that now I have to dive back into the camera religious wars and try to discern what new camera might be the best for me.  I'm exhausted already.

Bob

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schaki
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

It sure is at least a small jungle. Fujifilm X20 probably is not the best option as its zoom is less wide than the GX100. Only 28 and I read that the jpegs have problem with heavy NR.

If you want 24mm then Fujfilm XF1 might be something as it is close to it with 25mm. Not sure what hte NR is up to though as I've not checked the sample images. Some cameras like the X20 keeps the NR up even though it is set to Low or Off. That's the same habit as Ricoh had for the last three of their GR Digital compacts and also the GX200 which not offered real NR Off even though that option was there in the menu.

But while the X20 uses a X-trans sensor the XF1 still uses the EXR-Cmos.

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II have bigger sensor than the competitors 1" and a 28-100mm zoom.

Canon had miserable quality control issues with their zoom in their Powershot S100 and S110. I'm not sure how the sample variation and quality control is for the newer zoom in the S120 is. Hopefully better but hard to be sure about that.

Nikon Coolpix P330 is another small camera which like the Powershot S120 which also have a 24-120mm zoom and fast aperture at the wide end. Both and Fujifilm XF1 have slow aperture at the long end. But however that is of importance depends on how you value a such feature.

I've seen full size sample images from the P330 in at least one review not long ago and was not exactly impressed with the jpeg engine. But with that said I've not had a look at full size samples from the XF1 or Powershot S120 either yet. All these three should be ok with Raw though.

Panasonic LX7 is another one which might be of interest.

The best Ricoh have to offer at the moment is the GRDIV and the new GR. These are as you probably already know fixed lens compacts with 28mm lens and aps-c in the GR. Coolpix 'A' is a good competitor to the GR which might be worth to have a look at as well.

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rhlounsbury
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to schaki, 9 months ago

Thanks very much for your ideas.  The search begins...

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idnab
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to schaki, 9 months ago

schaki wrote:

It sure is at least a small jungle. Fujifilm X20 probably is not the best option as its zoom is less wide than the GX100. Only 28 and I read that the jpegs have problem with heavy NR.

If you want 24mm then Fujfilm XF1 might be something as it is close to it with 25mm. Not sure what hte NR is up to though as I've not checked the sample images. Some cameras like the X20 keeps the NR up even though it is set to Low or Off. That's the same habit as Ricoh had for the last three of their GR Digital compacts and also the GX200 which not offered real NR Off even though that option was there in the menu.

But while the X20 uses a X-trans sensor the XF1 still uses the EXR-Cmos.

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II have bigger sensor than the competitors 1" and a 28-100mm zoom.

Canon had miserable quality control issues with their zoom in their Powershot S100 and S110. I'm not sure how the sample variation and quality control is for the newer zoom in the S120 is. Hopefully better but hard to be sure about that.

Nikon Coolpix P330 is another small camera which like the Powershot S120 which also have a 24-120mm zoom and fast aperture at the wide end. Both and Fujifilm XF1 have slow aperture at the long end. But however that is of importance depends on how you value a such feature.

I've seen full size sample images from the P330 in at least one review not long ago and was not exactly impressed with the jpeg engine. But with that said I've not had a look at full size samples from the XF1 or Powershot S120 either yet. All these three should be ok with Raw though.

Regarding Nikon P330 - from my personal experience - jpegs are not bad at all.

User Interface is capable for the category, however quite sluggish compared to some others, may still be acceptable for many.

The P330 may be viewed as somewhat of a substitute of GX100.

Panasonic LX7 is another one which might be of interest.

The best Ricoh have to offer at the moment is the GRDIV and the new GR. These are as you probably already know fixed lens compacts with 28mm lens and aps-c in the GR. Coolpix 'A' is a good competitor to the GR which might be worth to have a look at as well.

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schaki
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to idnab, 9 months ago

idnab wrote:

though.

Regarding Nikon P330 - from my personal experience - jpegs are not bad at all.

User Interface is capable for the category, however quite sluggish compared to some others, may still be acceptable for many.

The P330 may be viewed as somewhat of a substitute of GX100.

In what way is the P330 sluggish? Only the UI/menus or even the AF?

About the sample images in reviews, still I was not impressed with what I saw. Maybe NR Low or Off, if the later is available, might help as well as tweak the in camera parameters for the jpeg output.

I've not had a look at sample images from other competing compacts yet if if I might believe that the Powershot S120 is close to the P330 with edges over and below each other.

I'm not really interested in Canon compacts as the UI is not very good imo. Tested the waterproof Powershot D20 last spring and returned it even though I to some extent liked the image quality with low NR for that sensor-size which was 1/2.3" Cmos.

I still have Coolpixes which I like. Though these are old. Coolpix 700 2mp and the classic 950 with swivel body. None of them are fast really but however that is problem or not depends how I try to use it.

In the past I've had a Coolpix 5400 but found it somewhat big and clumsy and the images looked very digital to me. Also tested the P50 but fell out with that one too.

I like my somewhat old 5mp Contax TVS Digital quite a lot. Good image quality which sometimes even holds up at iso 320 and inuitive UI as for the Ricohs and also short shutter release lag. But the AF is not very fast, at least it it pretty accurate for most of the time.

The Ricoh Caplio R3 seems to be the best overall of the small Ricoh super-zoom compacts.

The R4 had slightly better lcd but occasional banding problem in darker parts of the images. Frm what I remember the images was noisier than these from the R3 with same iso setting, iso 100.

It had a new 6mp ccd compared to 5mp in the R3.

And the R5, may have been, the last real R-series camera dspeite some flaws, as the later ones like the R6 no longer had fast Phase detection AF and worse NR.

The R10 probably took the price for possibly being the worst of the last 4 (there never was a R9).

The CX series is probably ok and I'e begun to use a CX4 but will try to find a decent R3 and a R5 to since keep the best of them.

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pcheywood
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to rhlounsbury, 9 months ago

rhlounsbury wrote:

Thanks to all for your feedback. I think that we are all agreed that the GX100 is a really nice camera to use. I have loved being able to make quick adjustments with my fingertips. My GX100 has been a loyal companion and superb camera and I am sorry to see it go.

The worst part is that now I have to dive back into the camera religious wars and try to discern what new camera might be the best for me. I'm exhausted already.

Bob

As my GX100 has been getting older I've been looking around for some sort of replacement. I'm looking into the Panasonic LF1 at the moment because of its built in EVF, and size. Unfortunately it's only 28mm at the wide end, but goes up to 200mm at the long end.

I just wish it had been made as a GX300 though, for the handling !

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idnab
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Re: GX100 color failure?
In reply to schaki, 9 months ago

schaki wrote:

idnab wrote:

though.

Regarding Nikon P330 - from my personal experience - jpegs are not bad at all.

User Interface is capable for the category, however quite sluggish compared to some others, may still be acceptable for many.

The P330 may be viewed as somewhat of a substitute of GX100.

In what way is the P330 sluggish? Only the UI/menus or even the AF?

Yes, the menu system is slow, for capture and playback,  although you can live with it after a while if you don't mind taking your time. I use the manual AF mode in which you can place the focus area where you prefer in the frame, works fine, not tried other AF modes yet.

A nice touch in UI - the programmable Fn button for 10 sets of capture variables.

There is a NR filter which is variable for jpegs and I prefer the lowest NR setting.

About the sample images in reviews, still I was not impressed with what I saw. Maybe NR Low or Off, if the later is available, might help as well as tweak the in camera parameters for the jpeg output.

I've not had a look at sample images from other competing compacts yet if if I might believe that the Powershot S120 is close to the P330 with edges over and below each other.

I'm not really interested in Canon compacts as the UI is not very good imo. Tested the waterproof Powershot D20 last spring and returned it even though I to some extent liked the image quality with low NR for that sensor-size which was 1/2.3" Cmos.

I still have Coolpixes which I like. Though these are old. Coolpix 700 2mp and the classic 950 with swivel body. None of them are fast really but however that is problem or not depends how I try to use it.

In the past I've had a Coolpix 5400 but found it somewhat big and clumsy and the images looked very digital to me. Also tested the P50 but fell out with that one too.

I like my somewhat old 5mp Contax TVS Digital quite a lot. Good image quality which sometimes even holds up at iso 320 and inuitive UI as for the Ricohs and also short shutter release lag. But the AF is not very fast, at least it it pretty accurate for most of the time.

The Ricoh Caplio R3 seems to be the best overall of the small Ricoh super-zoom compacts.

The R4 had slightly better lcd but occasional banding problem in darker parts of the images. Frm what I remember the images was noisier than these from the R3 with same iso setting, iso 100.

It had a new 6mp ccd compared to 5mp in the R3.

And the R5, may have been, the last real R-series camera dspeite some flaws, as the later ones like the R6 no longer had fast Phase detection AF and worse NR.

The R10 probably took the price for possibly being the worst of the last 4 (there never was a R9).

The CX series is probably ok and I'e begun to use a CX4 but will try to find a decent R3 and a R5 to since keep the best of them.

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