“Mirai”, it’s a name that often stands for pioneering (and a high chance of failure) in the naming history of Japanese manufacturers. Unlike the BMW Z series which possesses the name of “future” and claims both commercial as well as exposure success, the Toyota Mirai and the hydrogen FCV pathway seemed to be failing its …
Ricoh Point & Shoot
Ah the 1980’s when cars and cameras still had edges and when certain camera companies had the courage to design and produce unusual cameras. Case in point are these fraternal twins: the Ricoh Mirai and the Olympus AZ-4 Zoom.
I think the design goal was quite clear: design a compact, high quality camera with a long (for the time) zoom and a large amount of automation. It was designed and marketed as a solution to carrying an SLR and a bag of lenses.
The Shotmaster range is a small camera line-up from Ricoh that is very much forgotten and for good reasons – they never spark any interests. However, there’s one particular model I found that stands out from the rest of the seemingly un-inspiring cameras in the line-up. That being the Ricoh Shotmaster Ultra Zoom Super, also known as the Ricoh FF-20 in the Japan market.
I am sure to get some grief about this piece given that my last article on the analog Ricoh GR1s ended with my resolution that I was not interested in buying a digital GR. Well, that sentiment lasted about two weeks before I broke down and bought a Ricoh GRIII. And I’m glad I did. The digital GRIII remains remarkably faithful to its analog predecessors, while taking what makes the analog GR cameras so distinct to the next level, without compromise or gratuitousness of functionality. The GRIII is one of the best digital cameras I have ever used.