Ricoh Theta SC Brief Review



  • Other Features : 360 photos, manual mode
  • Weight : 102g
  • Battery : Li-ion rated at 250 shots
  • Weather Sealing : No
  • Screen : None
  • GPS : No
  • Wi-Fi : Yes
  • Flash : No
  • Video : 720p at 15 fps
  • RAW : No
  • Image Stabilization : No
  • Autofocus System : Fixed focus 10 cm to infinity
  • Burst Speed : -
  • Aperture : f/2.0 (x2)
  • Shutter Speed : 60 sec. to 1/8000
  • ISO : 100 - 1600
  • Sensor : 12 megapixel 1/2.3" CMOS (x2)
  • Release Date: 2016-10-12
  • Final Grade: 80 4.0 Star Rating: Recommended

Ricoh brings 360 into a budget-friendly option with the Theta SC
The Ricoh Theta SC is a 360 camera designed for simplicity and affordability. While the 360 camera still includes a nice bundle of features, beware of the low video quality on the budget 360.
By Hillary Grigonis, Last updated on: 2/24/2017

Ricoh has added a budget-friendly camera to their lineup of 360 options. The Ricoh Theta SC is designed to make 360 photography more accessible with a simpler interface and a lower price point. 

For still images, users won't see much of a gap between the Theta SC and the Theta S. Both cameras use a pair of 12 megapixel sensors measuring at 1/2.3" and both use dual f/2 lenses. Internal software stitches the data from both sensors together to create simple 360 images. The same 8 GB of storage will keep up to 1600 images internally without an SD card.

Users will likely notice the SC's price in the video options, however. The Theta SC only shoots in 720p. Stretch that resolution around into a 360 view and video quality will be rather low. That footage is also recorded at a very choppy 15 fps and clips are limited to five minutes.

The budget version also skips the HDMI port, eliminating the possibility of live streaming. 

The camera does keep much of the same body style intact, however, keeping the same odd shape and dual camera set-up and adding a few more color options to the mix.

If you are only looking for 360 still photos, the Ricoh Theta SC is an excellent choice with much of the same hardware that the pricier  Theta S holds. If you want video or live streaming however, you'll likely to want to wait to save up for the more advanced model, since the camera's budget price starts to show in lowered video quality. 

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Pentax/Ricoh Reviews

Pentax, who just recently merged with Ricoh, has long been a sort of underdog—but not necessarily in performance or quality. Pentax/Ricoh offers some quirky cameras, but for the most part, we've found that to be a good thing.

The Pentax/Ricoh DSLR’s are mostly weather-sealed, giving them a unique advantage over competing manufacturers that don't offer anything similar. When we tried out models like the K-50, we were quite impressed with the image quality. The autofocus was a bit noisier than a Nikon, but the weather-sealing and often better price is hard to resist when the image quality is so good. Pentax continued to add in innovations by adding an anti-aliasing filter that can be turned on and off to the 2013 K-3.

Pentax hasn't jumped into the mirrorless battle too much, but they do offer the tiny and colorful Q7. With a smaller sensor and a smaller price point, the Q7 and similar models are more of a consumer mirrorless than one for the enthusiasts, but it's an extremely small camera with a whole lot of color options.

Pentax has a few solid compact models out too. The Pentax MX-1 earned our Best Budget Advanced Compact for 2013 for its advanced features yet small price tag. They offer a waterproof line that includes macro ring lights built in, something unique to the WG cameras.

Pentax/Ricoh may be a bit quirky, but many of their cameras are well worth a look and offer excellent image quality for the price.

We here at Digital Camera HQ offer unbiased, informative reviews and recommendations to guide you to the right camera. We're not an actual store; we're just here to help you find the perfect camera at the best price possible by using our camera grades. Let us know if you have any problems or questions, we're happy to help.