My trusty Ricoh GX200 for the last 3 years is dead. I dropped it and the next day and part of the CCD is damage i think, all the images taken with it has some black border on the top.And worse is that i found out about it only when i reached Changi Airport about to set off on my trip to Australia,unfortunately Ricoh did not have a GX300 out (it's been like 3 years) although they do have the GR IV that is due but that's a 28mm fixed focal length lens. So i got the next best thing an Olympus XZ-1 but that is a topic for a later post. But for now a tribute to my GX200 and why i think it's one of the best designed cameras not necessary the best quality but the best designed.
Notice the black semi circle spot at the top of the lcd?

The Ricoh GX200 is one of the better designed cameras out there as  evident by how they keep the same look and feel consistent throughout the G series of cameras from the GR to the GXR.

The only really bad thing i would put it as the ISO performance , it is really quite bad, at ISO 200 noise is becoming and issue and 400 its really quite bad.

But that is the only bad thing and it's a shame that Ricoh didn't make the sensor better as compare with the Panasonic LX3 which came out after the GX200.

The other camera should learn from Ricoh in terms of the camera functionality and design. But of course I am looking at the camera from an enthusiast point of view.

This has gotta be one of the nicest grips that I have found in a compact camera. I have big hands and this camera though a bit small has rubber in the correct areas helping you to grip the camera nicely.

Wide Angle ! All 24mm of it!
It allows lots of self take shots of me and my wife. It was the perfect self take camera, lots of cameras at that time only have like 28mm or 35mm at its widest end. This one has 24mm so no only can you see you and your other half, you can also see a lot of the background too!
Self taken during our honey moon with the Ricoh, great 24mm lens

Custom functions
This is what sets it apart from other cameras of its class, there are 2 function buttons, a rock wheel that can access up to 5 custom menus, and 3 custom function settings that you can save your favourite settings. What i like about the 3 custom function settings is that no only it saves your camera settings, it also saves ur zoom settings! So you can have it set to 35mm or 50mm and it will remember it.

Notice the top left of the lcd, you can programmed those to functions that you use often.

Up to 3 custom settings can be saved, the zoom setting is also saved.

Step Zoom
You can make it zoom in steps according to traiditional focal lengths like 24mm to 28mm to 35mm to 50mm and 72mm. So you will always know what focal length you are shooting at.

The step zoom indicator is on the left of the LCD.

I believe this is one of the very first camera to have an auto-cap for the lens. Nice touch although it also cost quite abit, think it was about 20-30 SGD.

Auto-cap = Never forget your lens cap !

Snap focus
Basically this is like hyper focusing, the camera presets the focus from 2.5m to infinity, great for street shooting. Heard the GRD IV has different step focus settings from 1m on-wards. And you can assigned one of the 2 custom function buttons to do this so you can just turn it on or off with a push of a button. No need for complicated menus.

Sadly its time to move on other cameras and even if Ricoh comes out with a GX300 it probably won't be on my shopping list anytime soon. Goodbye dear friend..