Monday, 23 November 2009

Drawn to the Light

GRD III, f1.9, 1/50, ISO 800, RAW

It is getting dark very early here in the UK so I thought I make use of the fast GRD III lens and go out shooting. With the limited usable high ISO of the GRD III however it was not easy and I could not always use ISO 400.

The GRD III has a very fast lens and a new sensor with imporved high ISO but it is still not a very good low light camera due to excessive banding issues at anything over ISO 400. The only way to work around this is to take the RAW file and boost the black levels a lot and make sure all shadow areas are black without details. This is pretty much unacceptable for a camera in this price range and it shows hat the 4 year old GRD I still has the best IQ, especially at high ISO.


  1. That's a very interesting thing to say, Cris. I was tossing around the idea of getting a GRD III as a 'low light' party camera (to compliment my GX100). I guess I'll have to wait...

  2. I am quite happy with the GRD III but the banding is a problem at ISO 800 and especially ISO 1600 so as a low light camera the GRD I is still better.

    The new APS module for the GXR and even the zoom module have better low light IQ and no problems with banding, at least judging by the first samples.

    I do hope that Ricoh can fix the banding problems on the GRD III though.