selfie ERIC KIM muscle topless

Why Ricoh is Superior to Leica

After much experimentation with Leica cameras, and all the other cameras on the market, this is what I have learned:

RicohPentax is the supreme (the best) camera brand for photography.

For videos and vlogging things, LumixPanasonic is the best.

Why Ricoh Pentax?

This is the interesting thing with Ricoh:

I don’t think they actually make their cameras for a profit. They do it for a passion.

For example, interesting how they keep updating the Ricoh GR III. Even making slightly bizarre cameras like the Ricoh GR IIIx.

It seems that RICOH-PENTAX ignores what everyone else in the camera industry is doing

In praise of creative isolation:

It seems that Ricoh Pentax is not concerned with short-term camera trends and camera industry things. They are just committed to making the best cameras.

For example. when everyone is going mirrorless … why is Ricoh Pentax still making DSLR cameras? They must truly believe in them.

It seems that Leica is just trying to milk their legacy

When we want a Leica M rangefinder camera, what do we really want?

We want to become like Henri Cartier-Bresson.

For example, when we buy Air Jordan sneakers, we want to ‘be like mike’.

Photography-Life integration

Another question:

In a world with iPhone Pro cameras, why have a RICOH GR III?

selfie ERIC KIM

In fact, being a daily practicing photographer, I have discovered:

Shooting with RICOH GR III is at least 100x better than shooting with iPhone Pro.


  1. The high contrast black and white JPEG preset on RICOH GR III is 100x more beautiful as an aesthetic than iPhone. This will expedite and speed up your workflow (no need for additional post-processing).
  2. Better ergonomics: As small and convenient an iPhone is, the physical handle and hand grip of the RICOH GR III, and the physical shutter button of the dedicated RICOH GR III ‘standalone digital camera‘ is supreme.


There is no “perfect” camera. Don’t fall into GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) and falsely believe that buying a new camera will make you a better photographer.

If you’re not feeling inspired in your photography, I recommend you to buy books, not gear. Also check out these 75+ Inspirational Photo Books You Gotta Buy. You can also download my free books.

Equipment Articles >

  3. iPad Pro over iPhone Pro
  4. Is Leica Overrated?
  5. Fujifilm X-PRO 3 over Leica M10
  6. Equipment Creep
  7. Once You Got Perfect, Then What?
  9. One-Handed Photography
  10. Why Rangefinders Are Overrated
  12. The Best Equipment is The Equipment You Already Have
  13. The Best Camera is the One You Shoot with the Most
  14. Why RICOH GR III is the Best Camera
  15. Use and Abuse Your Gear!
  16. RICOH is the new LEICA
  17. In Praise of Banging around Your Camera
  18. Electric Cameras
  19. Why the RICOH GR III is Better than the Leica Q2
  20. Buy a new Ricoh GR III, not a New iPhone
  21. The Best Headphones are In-Ear Monitors
  22. Are Point-and-Shoot Cameras the Best Cameras?
  23. Gear Adaptation Syndrome
  24. Satisfice
  25. What is the Benefit of “Standalone” Digital Cameras?
  26. All Cameras are Good Cameras
  27. Why The Future of Photography is Software
  29. Use and Abuse Your Gear!
  30. Why RICOH GR II is the Best Street Photography Camera
  31. The Best Photography/Vlogging Equipment Setup
  32. My Favorite Travel Street Photography Equipment
  33. Zen Body-Hand-Mind Connection with the Camera
  34. Why It Doesn’t Matter What Camera You Shoot With
  35. What is the Best Camera and Lenses for Street Photography?
  36. The Best Travel Street Photography Equipment 2018
  37. 6 Lessons I’ve Learned After Shooting All the Expensive Cameras
  38. How to Make Good Photos on a Shitty Camera
  39. Why I Shoot With One Camera and One Lens
  40. My Travel Equipment, Winter 2017
  41. What is the Perfect Camera For You?
  42. What to Consider When Buying a Camera

Digital Medium Format Photography

Smartphone Photography >

Film Photography 101 >

My favorite camera: RICOH GR III

Currently my favorite camera is the RICOH GR III:

Best Equipment by ERIC KIM

This is a list of my personal favorite equipment in photography, computers, and life:

Of course, this list probably won’t apply to you — but this is advice I would give myself (if I needed to buy stuff):

Film cameras

If you’re new to shooting film, pick up a copy of FILM NOTES.

eric kim melbourne benjamin thompson
Portrait by Benjamin Thompson // Leica MP + Henri Neck Strap + SF 24D flash + Leica 35mm f/2 Summicron ASPH lens

Best film rangefinder

Leica MP + Leica 35mm f/2 Summicron Lens

Best affordable film rangefinder

Leica M6 + Voigtlander 35mm f/2.5 Lens

Best compact film camera

Contax T3

Best medium-format film camera

Hasselblad 500-series

Best black and white film

Kodak Tri-X 400 (pushed to 1600): $5

Best color film

Kodak Portra 400: $8.50

Best film scanner

For medium-format/35mm: Epson v800: $800

For 35mm: Plustek OpticFilm 8100: $270

Camera accessories

eric kim street photography gfx fujifilm medium format digital-7340

Best camera shoulder bag


Best camera backpack

Fits 13” Laptop and Camera: Thinktank Perception 15 (black): $120

Best photography neck strap

Best photography wrist strap

Best photography inspiration website

Best photography news blog

Best photography software

Adobe Lightroom

Best video editing software

iMovie (free) or Final Cut Pro X ($300)


See all my free books.

Best educational photography book

Magnum Contact Sheets

Best black-and-white photography art book

“Exiles” by Josef Koudelka

Best color photography art book

“The Suffering of Light” by Alex Webb

Best photography handbook

Street Notes

Best philosophy book

On the Shortness of Life – Seneca ($8) // 10 Lessons Seneca Has Taught Me.

Best digital tools

Best laptop

Maxed-out 13” MacBook Pro (Refurbished)

Best phone

The smallest iPhone available (currently iPhone Mini)

Best Mac Apps

Best writing app

IA Writer (for writing)

Best screen recorder


Best image resizer

JPEGmini Pro


eric kim hanoi street photography-0012663

Best earbuds

In-ear monitors


Cindy Project Monochrome-3

Best underwear

ExOfficio Men Boxer Brief (black): $26

Best T-shirt

Outlier NYC Merino Wool T-Shirt

Best socks

Outlier NYC Black Merino Wool Socks

Best pants

Merino Wool Leggings (black)

Best glasses

LINDBERG – Titanium


eric kim street photography x100f fujifilm-7232

Best bank


Best entrepreneurial tools

Best blogging platform + Genesis theme

Best paid online services

eric kim street photography gfx fujifilm medium format digital-7360

Best cloud storage

Dropbox (Pro)

Diet & Nutrition


Intermittent fasting — with one big meal a day (only dinner)


Deadlifts (one rep max) + squats + dumbbell press + chin-ups + pushups


Of course this is just a list of stuff that work for me. It probably won’t work for you.

But I got inspired to make this list– because it took me about 10 years to figure out the best equipment for me. And this works for me, and I hope it can help simplify your purchasing decisions (at least in photography and some other details).

I’ll continue to do articles and videos related to equipment– because I do believe (up to a certain degree) having the ‘right’ equipment in life makes life easier. But the problem is falling victim to GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) where we are buying stuff for the sake of it (has happened to me).

If you already have a bunch of equipment that works for you– stick with it. But if you need some help, I hope this list helped you.


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