Ricoh RZ-3000

The Ricoh RZ3000 may be the best form factor for a film zoom point and shoot camera. While it is a larger than the Canon 180u or any of the Olympus Stylus cameras, it feels good in the hand. It has a nice grip on the right side that makes carrying it in your hand easy. The other reason is the top plate dials for changing modes, most of the other cameras like this have small rubber buttons that are hard to press accurately and only provide feedback via an LCD. With the dials the available exposure modes can be easily set and the large flash control button is separate and distinct. Another nice feature of the dials is the selected mode is illuminated with a pleasing glow making it easy to know how the camera is set when in dim light.
The lens is a 38 to 130mm f4.5 to 9.5 with aspherical elements (6 elements in 3 groups)

Ricoh describes the auto-focus as having 7 zones with 1024 steps. The camera also has an infinity mode selected via the top dial and a single center focus point mode. Other modes are portrait where the camera sets the flash to fire for fill and sets single focus point automatically. The zoom also automatically changes to frame the person with a half press of the shutter. Action mode sets auto-focus to single point and the drive mode to continuous.

The major detraction is the lack of any exposure overrides, all exposure is handled by the camera. I have only run one roll of film through the camera and it was some very poor Polaroid 400 that was at least 10 years out of date. The point was to test that it worked before committing to using good film that is becoming even more precious.

I’m intrigued enough with this camera to give it another try with better film. Until then here are some sample images from that initial roll.


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