Still debating which mirrorless camera system to throw your support behind? Ricoh's next addition to its unique GXR system might make your choice that little bit more difficult — it marries a 24-85mm zoom lens to a DSLR-sized 16-megapixel APS-C sensor. The company updated its roadmap online, saying the unit would come in early 2012, but gave no further details. According to Ricoh GR Diary, the unit will be released on January 20th and have a f/3.5-5.5 aperture.
The GXR system uses a small body with interchangeable "camera units", each with its own lens and sensor. Previously released units have matched prime lenses to large APS-C sensors and zooms to smaller sensors, but this new module will be the first to give users zoom flexibility with DSLR-style image quality. We think the unit could make a pretty good general purpose solution for enthusiasts — the sensor is larger than in competing Micro Four Thirds cameras, and while Sony's NEX system also uses APS-C the GXR body offers more direct control. More word when we get it.