The Ricoh WG-6 is a fresh new robust compact camera that is waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof, and crushproof. It has also undergone several significant advancements since its first release.
The WG-6 is now dustproof and freeze-proof to temperatures as low as -10 degrees Celsius, in addition to being waterproof to a depth of 20 meters, shockproof against falls from a height of 2.1 meters, and waterproof to a depth of 20 meters.
Additionally, it has a newly developed 20-megapixel back-illuminated 1/2.3 inch CMOS sensor, a 5x optical zoom lens, a 3.0 inch LCD panel, the ability to capture 4K video, a GPS module, six LED Macro Lights that are positioned around the lens barrel for use in macro photography.
Ricoh WG-6 Build Quality
If there’s one thing you can count on from the Ricoh brand, it’s a new small action camera that’s been toughened up every year. This year, it’s the turn of the 20-megapixel resolution, 5x optical zoom, WG-6, which was initially revealed alongside the Ricoh GR III premium model and arrives in the wake of the older WG-60. The WG-6 was originally introduced alongside the Ricoh GR III premium model.
While earlier models have, it’s safe to say, featured some pretty wacky designs to appeal to teenagers, sports enthusiasts, and action junkies, who wanted to capture their exploits without fear of damaging their image-capture device in the process, the most recent WG-6 model tones it down a bit more than its predecessors did.
There are fewer of the go-faster stripes on its fascia than there were on its numerous predecessors, and overall, it has a little less angular and brutalist aspect than its many forebears. Ricoh asserts that this “enhanced” and “renewed” design is not only an aesthetic aspect but rather enables greater usage and operability with it, particularly when gloves are worn.
The back-lit 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor incorporated into the WG6 still manages to give off that reassuringly industrial feel that signals such an option is a step beyond a point-and-shoot compact or your smartphone when it comes to its ability to withstand being destroyed.
In the same manner, as before, there is an internally stacking zoom that does not at any time emerge from the body of the camera. Additionally, there are screws on the faceplate, which are colored a metallic orange in the case of our review sample. If the WG-60 is more to your liking, there is also an option that is black and grey, which has a more serious appearance. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price for sale in the United Kingdom is £379.99, which appears to be about par for the course for a camera of this ilk.
Ricoh WG-6 Image Quality
The 20-megapixel JPEG option was used to capture each of the example photographs included in this study. This setting results in an image that is around 6 megabytes in size on average.
It is accurate to remark that this camera does not always provide images of excellent quality. This can be caused by wide areas of overcast sky, which result in the foreground being underexposed, or by bright sceneries, which result in the foreground being overexposed. When taking pictures at night, the results may look hazy and unclear, whereas in brighter conditions, we begin to see visible fringing where dark outlines meet bright backgrounds. However, it’s possible that the majority of users won’t be overly bothered by this unless they’re specifically looking for it.
To be fair, the camera module in your smartphone is probably more advanced than the one in this camera. Additionally, we are dealing with a relatively small 1/2.3-inch sensor at the heart of this camera, so we shouldn’t expect it to measure up to the latest interchangeable lens mirrorless wonder, which is pretty much the lion’s share of the camera market now that sales of DSLRs are flat.
If you want to avoid a discernible decline in the quality of the image, it is recommended that you keep the ISO setting on this camera at 800 or lower, even though it can go as high as 64,000. The subject can be illuminated more softly than the flash will permit, which is a welcome additional talking point on this camera. Fortunately, we have the assistance of the front LED lamps to provide some additional light and illuminate the subject more softly than the flash will allow.
There is no denying that the widest setting on the camera, which is equivalent to 28 millimeters, is helpful for wide-angle landscape photography. On the other hand, the 140-millimeter telephoto reach is useful for getting in a little closer, but not that much more. In conclusion, you won’t be overly disappointed with this camera if you don’t ask too much of it and instead focus on its primary purpose, which is to capture scenes and activities that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to.
Ricoh WG-6 Conclusion
Even if it did not have its destruction-proofed construction, this tough camera from a well-known brand seems to meet the requirements for what we might expect of it in 2019; specifically, it has an adequate resolution of 20 megapixels and the ability to shoot 4K video. This would make it appealing even if it did not have its destruction-proofed construction.
Be aware, however, that the Ricoh WG-6 still has a relatively small 1/2.3-inch sensor at its core. This means that the images will invariably have the quality of shots taken by a point-and-shoot camera, in that they will not be quite as sharp or as detailed as anyone who is accustomed to using an interchangeable lens camera or even a high-end smartphone would be used to seeing.
However, in this case, that is not even close to being the point. The Ricoh WG-6 has been designed to allow photographers to take pictures in environments and under conditions in which they would never think to put a DSLR or mirror-less camera at risk, the most obvious example of which is when they are shooting underwater.
Not everyone will be willing to pay a premium for something that produces images that, while passable, aren’t that great on close inspection. However, not everyone will require a camera resistant to shock, water, dust, freezing temperatures, and crushing.
Ricoh WG-6 Specs
|Max resolution||5184 x 3888|
|Image ratio w:h||1:1, 4:3, 3:2|
|Effective pixels||20 megapixels|
|Sensor size||1/2.3″ (6.17 x 4.55 mm)|
|White balance presets||8|
|Custom white balance||Yes|
|Image stabilization||Digital only|
|Focal length (equiv.)||28–140 mm|
|Autofocus||Contrast Detect (sensor)CenterTrackingSingleContinuousFace DetectionLive View|
|Digital zoom||Yes (8.1X)|
|Normal focus range||50 cm (19.69″)|
|Macro focus range||1 cm (0.39″)|
|Number of focus points||9|
|Screen type||TFT LCD|
|Minimum shutter speed||4 sec|
|Maximum shutter speed||1/4000 sec|
|Manual exposure mode||No|
|Subject / scene modes||Yes|
|Flash range||5.50 m (with Auto ISO)|
|Flash modes||Flash on, flash off|
|Exposure compensation||±2 (at 1/3 EV steps)|
|AE Bracketing||±2 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)|
|Storage types||Internal + SD/SDHC/SDXC card|
|USB||USB 3.0 (5 GBit/sec)|
|Wireless notes||Supports FlashAir SD cards|
|Remote control||Yes (Receivers on front and back)|
|Battery description||DB-110 lithium-ion battery & USB charger|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||340|
|Weight (inc. batteries)||246 g (0.54 lb / 8.68 oz)|
|Dimensions||118 x 66 x 33 mm (4.65 x 2.6 x 1.3″)|
|GPS notes||Includes e-Compass|