Sunday, February 24, 2008

Ricoh GX100 vs Canon G9: The Price Wars!

Once upon a time the price difference between these two cameras was about two stops. What is a stop you ask? Good question! One stop in terms of price is $100 :) Unlike photography, we don't want to use complicated math, physics and fractions, one stop is one hundred dollars, two stops is two hundred, three stops is three hundred, etc.

But back on topic. The price difference made the G9 the price-leader in the field of prosumer/RAWsumers. However, now that the GX100 has had price adjustments, their prices are actually level. So now they can have a good old fashioned price war!

The Canon G9 is listed for $455 at Adorama, while the Ricoh GX100, without the optional viewfinder is listed at $440 at Adorama. Other reputable retailers list the Canon G9 at about $440 and $450, so for all practical purposes, their price is now the same!

So how do you chose between the two if you are looking for a prosumer (RAWsumer) at that price range? That is a very good question, and the answer cannot be given in 1000 words or less, because there are many variables, and this also depends on your workflow, what you plan to shot, how, when, where you plan to take the camera, system integration, JPEG vs RAW, wide angle zoom vs longer reach zoom, stabilization or not, etc, etc, etc.

If you haven't been through this internal debate, be sure to check the dozens and dozens of reviews of these two models, conveniently listed at our Power Compacts Review Matrix.

To further complicate things however, the GX100 is also available in a kit with external VF-1 viewfinder for $540, $100 more than the stand-alone model.

But the biggest bang for the buck for those who are mesmerized by the GX100 (you know who you are; if you have to ask, you are not one of them!), is the Adorama exclusive kit which includes the viewfinder, an extra battery, a case, and the HA2 hood.

And while we are on the topic of price wars, the "older" Ricoh GRD I has become more affordable, or in the half-empty case, less un-affordable. The anniversary cyan-blueish edition is on sale for $450, while the standard edition is $500.

Actually the anniversary edition has a story behind it: It was designed by renowned Japanese illustrator Katsuya Terada, and it has a blue sky and clouds as the base color for the camera with figures of angels beside the lens and on the top of the camera body. Glass half-empty people will point out that you may need their help to get noise-free pictures at higher ISOs ;-)

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