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Ricoh adds features with final GR Digital III firmware update

By dpreview staff on Sep 16, 2011 at 19:21 GMT

Ricoh has announced it will update the firmware of its GRD III enthusiast compact camera. The update, due in mid October, is the fifth feature-adding revision for the high-end model and includes several additional features that have come from its GXR and GRD IV cameras. These include the ability to assign an additional option to the 'Adj.' lever and the locking of the power button if the optional new GL-1 metal lens cap is fitted. The company says this will be the final update for the GRD III.

Press Release:

Ricoh releases fifth function-enhancing firmware update for GR DIGITAL III

Tokyo, Japan, September 15, 2011—Ricoh Co., Ltd. (President and CEO: Shiro Kondo) today announced the planned mid-October 2011 release of the fifth function-enhancing firmware update for its GR DIGITAL III, a high-image-quality compact digital camera launched in August 2009.

Ricoh's function-enhancing firmware updates are developed in response to opinions and requests received from numerous customers through surveys submitted at customer registration and other channels. These updates enable customers who already own a GR DIGITAL III to update their firmware to include the latest functions, thus making it possible for them to enhance the performance and usability of their cameras by adding new functionality and settings.

Introduced in August 2009, the GR DIGITAL III features an F1.9 large-aperture lens and achieves high image quality in a compact body.

The function-enhancing firmware and instructions for using these functions can be downloaded free of charge from the Ricoh website. This is the final function-enhancing firmware update for the GR DIGITAL III.

GR DIGITAL III function-enhancing firmware: Release 5

Enhanced functions

  1. Addition of contrast bracketing

    You can automatically record three images with different contrast settings. The contrast can be adjusted on a five-level scale.

  2. Expansion of ADJ. control settings

    You can assign five functions to the ADJ control (currently four). The assigned functions can be directly changed without going through the menu screen. 

  3. Addition of ISO [AUTO-HI] setting function

    When using ISO [AUTO-HI], you can specify settings for switching the maximum ISO and for the point (shutter speed) for changing ISO sensitivity.

  4. Addition of vignetting setting function for high contrast B&W

    For high contrast B&W, you can adjust the vignetting. The vignetting setting options are off, weak, and strong.

  5. Support for the GL-1 metal lens cap (with power button lock mechanism) 

    This firmware addition provides support for the power button lock mechanism of the GL-1 metal lens cap, which is a new option to be introduced in mid-October 2011. This prevents the problem of unexpected extension of the lens since the lock function is in effect if the power button is pushed.
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Total comments: 17
By Najinsky (Sep 19, 2011)

Title says final GR Digital II update, but text says GR Digital III. Assume the title is just a typo?

Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Sep 20, 2011)

I'm afraid so. Sorry it took so long for me to spot your comment.

By ogl (Sep 18, 2011)

Ricoh - give us all Ricoh/Pentax FA* lenses back!!! Please.

By Chris_in_Osaka (Sep 18, 2011)

This is one of the things I like about Ricoh. They take existing model users into account and give them feature filled firmware updates even after a new model has been announced. Whether or not it is clever marketing, it is good to know you aren instantly dropped and forgotten about as soon as the new thing is out. I'm still using my original Ricoh GRD and, seeing the progress of rhe Ricoh line and their conduct towards their customers, I'm pretty sure I will eventually be upgrading with another Ricoh product.

1 upvote
By Fl_Gulfer (Sep 17, 2011)

They need to rerelease all the FA* lenses.

By kff (Sep 17, 2011)

Customer (or when You want) user friendly ... I am beginning to love Ricoh ... :)
I hope that it will be in the same case with Pentax DA system ...

By Poweruser (Sep 17, 2011)

I get the feeling that Ricoh uses "firmware updates" to get at least some form of press coverage.

Who the f*** really needs all those custom options. Now we can program the ADJ button too. Wow! Gosh...

inevitable crafts studio
By inevitable crafts studio (Sep 18, 2011)

@poweruser: thats one of the dumbest post i have ever read

1 upvote
By dentaku (Sep 20, 2011)

Ridiculous post! Ricoh have in the past significantly improved AF performance with firmware updates. And to some people (me), ergonomics counts for a lot in a camera, so if I can program the ADJ button, maybe I will.
More companies should follow Ricoh's lead (no I don't own one!) and provide long term support for their models.

Tom Caldwell
By Tom Caldwell (Sep 17, 2011)

Ricoh seem o have done this with all their discontinued models - give one last firmware update to include what they can of the replacement model's features. A nice touch showing that they are considerate to all users even if you chose to make your superseded model last longer seeing that it is inevitably still in good shape and working well.

By Joesiv (Sep 16, 2011)

Great to know Ricoh supports older models like this. Makes for good marketing for the newer models too, giving customers confidence in giving Ricoh a go.

Maybe a typo though, the heading says GR Digital II, but the article references the III.

By snake_b (Sep 16, 2011)

More of DPR's lack of proofreading.

1 upvote
By Albino_BlacMan (Sep 17, 2011)

Dear DPR: I'll be your official proffreader if you pay me a small amount of money and let me play with all the cameras. Its a small price for making your website a hell of a lot more credible

By cgarrard (Sep 16, 2011)

when is it available?

By Jaydubbleya (Sep 16, 2011)

Hi Carl,

As per the text up top...

"announced the planned mid-October 2011 release of the fifth function-enhancing firmware"


Joel Stern
By Joel Stern (Sep 17, 2011)

Ricoh is always very good about updating a discontinued camera as the new model comes out with some of the goodies of the new one. In addition, as stated, the 5th firmware update, you gotta love ricoh for this, I sure do.

1 upvote
By dwnthk (Oct 12, 2011)

It seems like the final firmware update doesn't do much of improvement on pictures taking

Comment edited 34 seconds after posting
Total comments: 17