Rioch has launched a new 8 megapixel successor to the GX. Called the Ricoh GX8, the camera features a 28mm wide-angle zoom lens in a body 29 mm wide and weighing a 205 grams.

As with previous models, the Caplio GX8 has an extremely fast start up time and for this model, Ricoh is boasting a 1.3 seconds from start up to taking the first shot. In addition to this the hybrid auto-focus system, the shutter instantly focuses on the object and shoots in 0.10 seconds.

Moreover, the Caplio GX8 is ready to take the next shot in 1.7 second intervals (fine mode, resolution 3264 x 2448) until the memory card is full. In continuous shooting mode, the Caplio GX8 can shoot 16 consecutive images in roughly two seconds with one press of the shutter.

A 28mm wide-angle zoom lens composed of 9 glass elements in 7 groups offers a 3x optical zoom with a 4x digital zoom

THE GX8 also boasts a 18mm x 24 mm Macro mode and the Caplio GX8 is outfitted with a special flash capable of illuminating objects even 15cm away without producing any of the washed out effects present with regular flash.

In addition to aperture priority, the Caplio GX8 provides other greatly improved auto exposure functions. For added control, exposure compensation is possible in 1/3EV steps over a range of ±2.0EV. Shutter speed can be adjusted manually from a very fast 1/2000 seconds to 30 seconds for night exposures.

The Caplio GX8 will be available in retail from May 9th 2005 with a SRP of £299.99