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GPS camera now comes with compass

Ricoh adds a 3-axis compass, called an SE-3 GPS module, to its 500SE GPS camera, such that it displays the position and azimuth of the camera on its liquid crystal display.

GPS Daily

If the question "Where am I?" is a recurring issue for you, Ricoh has added a feature to its GPS-ready digital camera that you may want to check out.

The Ricoh 500SE GPS camera now includes something called an SE-3 GPS module, a three-axis compass developed by Honeywell that nails down the position and direction (azimuth), then displays it on the camera's LCD.

The data, in the form of point coordinates, is embedded into an image as it is captured.

This gives the user a 3D "cones-of-view" perspective, indicating the direction the camera was facing. It comes ready to use with mapping applications such as Google Earth and ESRI's ArcGIS (PDF.)

A laser rangefinder connected to the camera via Bluetooth also enables the user to enter accurate distances.


"Prior to the availability of the SE-3 module, images from the 500SE were simply points on a map with no indication of the direction the camera was facing," Ricoh manager Jeff Lengyel told GPS Daily. "Now we can provide an accurate visual reference of an image's azimuth, as well as the field-of-view the camera could see from that position."

Industries ranging from the military and disaster response to forestry and architecture currently use these features for both aerial and ground-based photography. Sounds like a must-have for any CSI unit.