Ricoh R1 (I)

A very slim P&S from Ricoh with an aluminium front. The handgrip is the only part of the camera where is room for a 35mm film cassette. The camera has two lenses, a 30mm/3,5 and a 24mm/8. The 24mm is designed for the use in panoramic mode, in full frame pictures it shows heavy vignetting.
The R1 has a passive AF-system with seven AF points. It needs good light and contrast to focus quick. Other little cameras like the Olympus mju-II do the job much easier, the shutter lag of the R1 is long too. The camera focuses down to 30cm.
A nice feature is the infinity mode which sets the flash off and makes the R1 a great hipshot camera, especially with the 24mm/8 lens.

The switch on the left shows the three possible settings, standard full frame, panoramic mode with 30mm and panoramic mode with 24mm. The two panoramic modes are useless, because the film is only reduced to panoramic size by two sliders in the film window.

In the web there are several manuals how to block the sliders and to use the 24mm lens full frame. The simplest way I found was to put two tiny pieces of plastic in the two holes in the red circle. This lets the lens switch untouched and after doing it you have a real 24mm lens in a P&S (I mentioned before: with vignetting and unsharp corners!) I like the effect, which is dependent of the light situation and the used film.

Against the sky there is a heavy vignetting

In other situations the effect is less visible.


  1. Thanks for the tips on keeping the curtains open with the 24mm setting! Looks like a cool camera and I have one coming.

  2. Great tip! Last November I found this camera in my tools room. No one knows where it came from. I'll try your tip. :D