There’s been a lot of buzz about the Lytro digital camera that promises you can shoot an image and focus it afterward. But how does it work? What are the images like? And can you really focus after the fact? Here’s a hands-on look at the Lytro.
A new camera has been in the news recently: the Lytro, a $399 camera that allows you to take a photo now, and focus — or refocus — later. Sounds provocative. But does it work? Is this something you should add to your camera bag? I’ve had the opportunity to use one for several weeks now, and I’m pretty gung-ho. Here’s why.
The Lytro uses a technique that is called plenoptic — or light field — photography. The camera captures all the light coming through the lens from all angles, striking an array of microlenses on its sensor. The camera’s inventor, Ren Ng, says that the Lytro captures 11 million “light rays” in every photo.
Here’s one thing to get out of the way: the “focus later” aspect of the Lytro happens in special software after the shoot. The 11 million pieces of data the camera captures are written to a proprietary file that you download to your computer. Once the photo is on your computer screen, you click on any part of the image to bring that point into focus. Click on another part of the same image, and that point comes into focus. Lytro calls these images “Living Pictures.” The first time you see one, and experiment with focus, you will be impressed by how unusual these photos are. Living Picture photos are perfect for viewing live on a Web site, blog post, Facebook page, or other online entity.
here’s the link at creative pro com.