The design for the next Ricoh Theta has been revealed in an FCC registration spotted by Nokishita Camera.
— 軒下デジカメ情報局 (@nokishita_c) December 20, 2021
The FCC registration appears to show that the new Theta takes some design cues from the Theta Z1. However, there are some important differences:
- The lens seems much smaller than that of the Theta Z1. This implies that it has a smaller sensor.
- There does not appear to be an OLED screen.
- There are only two buttons on the side: power and mode. By comparison, the Theta Z1 has four buttons on the side: power, mode, Wi-Fi and Fn button.
- There appears to be a door on the left side of the Ricoh logo. The door likely covers a removable battery, which would be the first for a Theta. There may also be a Micro SD card slot.
- It has a USB type C port on the side, instead of on the bottom as in all previous Theta cameras. The cable on the side means that regardless of the monopod you use, you’ll be able to have access to the USB port. It is also possible that there may be accessories such as an external microphone.
- The round shutter button used in all previous Thetas is gone and seems to have been replaced by a semi-circular button that fits the contours of the design.
As I mentioned in my previous video about the new Ricoh Theta, the new camera is a new design, and not merely a new version of an existing camera. However, based on the smaller lens, the lack of OLED screen, and fewer buttons, this does not appear to be a Theta Z2 or other prosumer camera. I think this is good news because the next Theta Z2 is definitely coming at some point. Now we’ll have another new 360 camera for consumers as well.
Because this new Theta seems to use a smaller sensor, and there are many small sensors to choose from, there is a higher possibility that we’ll see significant new features such as higher resolution photos or higher resolution video. It will be interesting to see what this new camera will offer.
Meanwhile, here is my friend Yuqing Guo’s analysis about this new Theta: