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Lytro provides more exposure control and additional colors

By dpreview staff on Oct 9, 2012 at 15:00 GMT

Lytro has announced an update that provides greater exposure control for its Light Field Camera. It will also be offering the 8GB version of the camera in two addition colors - Moxie Pink and Seaglass that will be availble from Target.com/CityTarget stores and the Lytro website respectively. The update, that will be available to all existing customers, adds a manual mode, that provides control over shutter speed and ISO (aperture always being wide open). If you decide to specify both parameters, it becomes possible to apply exposure compensation and apply the camera's built-in ND filter.

The announcements come in the wake of Lytro expanding its distribution to include Australia, Canada, Singapore, Hong Kong and a range of retailers in the US, including Amazon.com, Best Buy and selected City Target stores.

Moxie Pink (left) will be available from selected City Target stores and Target.com, while Seaglass (second-left), will only be available directly from Lytro.com
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Comments

Total comments: 56
Razor512
By Razor512 (Oct 21, 2012)

I had a chance to use a Lytro and can honestly say, I would not spend a penny over $20 for it.

Most normal images (by normal I mean the common photo that the average person would take with their camera) do not show any benefit of the light field crap, the shots have to be macro and there is only a specific range at which the objects are located (generally around 1-4 feet).

It also seems to behave like a focus bracketed image as there are certain locations where you know for a fact that it is further away but it shows no difference. For example You take a picture of a basketball that is about 1.5 feet away and the focus adjustment is not gradual, I cant click every few pixels across it and have it bring different parts of the ball into focus, it just snaps when you get to an area that is far enough.

Overall as it is now, it is a horrible camera that reminds me of a bad cellphone camera.

0 upvotes
OpticsEngineer
By OpticsEngineer (Oct 13, 2012)

I bought a Lytro a month ago to evaluate for inspection applications. And up to a couple of days ago I agreed with all the comments about how unsuited it is for "photography" or the consumer market. The resolution is poor by modern standards, the screen is tiny, hard to focus, and it is awkward to hold. But then I had the strangest experience. First I spent an hour with my images, clicking here and there to refocus on different regions. Then I went to the Lytro website and played with contest winnning images. Then I came back to Dpreview as usual and looked at pictures here. All of sudden, what I knew were good pictures seemed dull, lifeless, flat. You could not do anything with them. You just look at them. Lytro has created something that is more engaging than a photograph. It is fun to explore them. Fun to puzzle out what the Lytrographer had in mind for you to play with. Sometimes obvious, sometimes subtle. It opens up entirely new ways to be creative.

0 upvotes
Chekr
By Chekr (Oct 12, 2012)

I would actually give this a try if the images format was an open standard...at this stage you can either view the images in the desktop program from Lytro or export them as flash files. Given that flash is well and truly on the decline and Lytro could disappear next year, remind me why I would commit my memories to this technology with proprietary image formats...

0 upvotes
Joseph S Wisniewski
By Joseph S Wisniewski (Oct 13, 2012)

What would you do with the image data if it were an one standard? The system is effectively dead, no one else is ever going to write software to deal with the files.

You'd need them not only to open the standard, but to open the source to the software.

1 upvote
Ryan Williams
By Ryan Williams (Oct 12, 2012)

The main problem with the Lytro seems to be that they're targeting a technology that's invariably going to be found most appealing by enthusiasts at the casual market. All these pretty colours, fancy marketing, etc aren't going to obscure its shortcomings from us, and the casual types they're seemingly trying to appeal to aren't going to bother with something so weird-looking and niche.

I understand they need to take small steps initially while funding is low and the market needs to be proven, but putting out products that simply aren't viable isn't going to help matters. Lytro need to take some inspiration from Fujifilm's marketing and put together a product and campaign that speaks to us enthusiasts who can see the technological potential of light field photography, rather than something hampered to the point of uselessness by production costs and marketing misfires.

0 upvotes
Gaffman
By Gaffman (Oct 10, 2012)

Lytro's just arrived in my shop today (Aus). I love that someone is trying to bring something genuinely new to the market. In its current form it may not set the photography world on fire but it hardly deserves the pasting it's received from most of you.

Light field imaging has potential. Lytro gives average consumers a chance to experience it. Dont hate... Innovate ;)

3 upvotes
AlanG
By AlanG (Oct 11, 2012)

I guess there will be a Lytro discussion forum here any day now.

Many of us are very intrigued by the idea of light field technology. It is the execution and marketing of this product that deserves the pasting. Once the novelty of playing with changing what is in focus on some images wears off, wouldn't most people find it pretty useless as a camera?

However if someone will come up with a way so I can fine tune the focus after the fact by just an inch on active portraits shot with my 5DIII... I could get the eyes tack sharp on almost every frame when shooting at large to moderate apertures.

So when that 200+ megapixel professional Lytro camera comes out, let's see how people react.

0 upvotes
Le Kilt
By Le Kilt (Oct 12, 2012)

Gaffman, it is genuinely innovative in the camera market, but unless they have revised their marketing blurb, so many people reading it thought they would get usable JPGs from the camera.
You don't. Posting a LINK on Facebook to your image hosted on lytro.com is the most likely use.
You can't even send the output by e-mail, just a link.

0 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (Oct 9, 2012)

The greatest challenge for the Lytro LF Camera is to find a really truly genuine USE for it.

The Wankel was great. The Segway was great.

The Lytro LF is great!

...great gadget, users please apply within.

.

5 upvotes
Joseph S Wisniewski
By Joseph S Wisniewski (Oct 9, 2012)

That is not fair. There are some practical uses for the segway, and Wankel engines do have pretty good performance.

3 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (Oct 9, 2012)

Quite true, Joseph.

They (Wankel and Segway) have their uses, albeit a niche market, but useful.

The Lytro has to find that niche.

.

0 upvotes
dnral
By dnral (Oct 10, 2012)

WOW! the Mazda RX7 and some stupid mall cops, really saved the world.
David

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
-jeffB
By -jeffB (Oct 10, 2012)

Ah, "saving the world". You raise a valid point; the "saving the world" section has been *completely empty* in EVERY Lytro review I've read.

0 upvotes
Thorbard
By Thorbard (Oct 11, 2012)

Paramedics on Segways literally save lives. (I've seen it in airports!)

0 upvotes
Simon97
By Simon97 (Oct 9, 2012)

It is an interesting concept. However, I think the product needed further development. It seems to have been released at "alpha" level. It needs to output much larger images for one thing.

Lytro should take this case design and put in an ordinary camera. For one, it can be weather sealed and toughened with a decent aperture lens and zoom range. Most of all, it is small and doesn't look like a camera. Perfect for discreet photography.

0 upvotes
Zvonimir Tosic
By Zvonimir Tosic (Oct 9, 2012)

I see from the comments below that our usual flock of vultures have gathered again on the tree branch of DPR news to release their croak about things they've never tried, and matters they never bothered to understand.

Comment edited 23 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
Joseph S Wisniewski
By Joseph S Wisniewski (Oct 9, 2012)

Yes, that is what you do. But why are you bragging about being a vulture?

4 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Oct 10, 2012)

ZT, an honest question: have you bought and used a Lytro? If not, might you (just like every other "vulture") be waiting for the price to drop until it is edible? After all, Lytro needs more than nonbuyers' praise to succeed.

0 upvotes
Tom view to a still
By Tom view to a still (Oct 9, 2012)

Light Field technology??? What isn't light field technology when it comes to photography?

I have heard the hoopla about this for a long time now. They don't explain anything really... bunch of techie double talk that really says nothing. I think the emperor has no clothes.

My guess at the big secret... focus bracketting. Several images taken simultaneously or near simultaneously. Software that uses the images to "slide the focus" (or de-focus) arcoss the multiple images. Give it a cool tech sounding name. You've got a new pet rock.

So far sounds like another red herring, time wasting gizmo. But.. love to see a true critical review. My mind is still open to facts, just not slogans.

2 upvotes
NetMage
By NetMage (Oct 9, 2012)

Everything else commercially available - the light field includes the direction of the incoming light rays - no other camera captures that.

This is nothing like focus bracketing, as you would realize if you had checked their examples (not yet available) that generate two different POV from a single image, creating a 3D image.

1 upvote
Joseph S Wisniewski
By Joseph S Wisniewski (Oct 9, 2012)

If you had checked, like you accuse Tom of not doing, you'd have realized that the amount you can actually shift a POV with a lytro is about 10mm, making that feature useless at anything other than macro distances.

Past that, and you run into exactly the same occlusion problem you have converting a focus stack to 3D: an image that looks extruded rather than actually dimensional.

Focus stacking and lightfield imaging both produce volumetric data. The processing algorithms are similar.

2 upvotes
Thorbard
By Thorbard (Oct 11, 2012)

There is no "big secret" light field technology does actually describe what this does. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Light-field_camera

Focus bracketing is a pretty good description, but the camera does it from a single sensor image.

0 upvotes
Biowizard
By Biowizard (Oct 9, 2012)

Shoot ... you mean it DOESN'T connect to FaceBook or make phone calls? Sheesh ...

Brian ( :-) )

2 upvotes
leumasgh1
By leumasgh1 (Oct 9, 2012)

This is news,

Well the idea of Lytro is not bad especially with the latest up date, Lytro; it is interesting, what about night photography, or if the lights are very low?

It will be very good if Lytro will introduce hand grip, hot shoe, and view finder at least like ''Canon PowerShort G15.''

But can maintain the same size and length of the original Lytro If the storage are bigger it will make a little sense , but lets us see the next news from LYTRO,

In case your Lytro is damage you lose your pictures, If another way of storage is introduced it will make another sense.

I will buy one for $100 to play about for the sack of Lytro effort.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (Oct 9, 2012)

Is this news?

Plenoptic cameras are fun stuff - just like magnets and spinning tops, for a short while.

I would buy one for $30 to play with for a while.

1 upvote
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Oct 10, 2012)

Yes, were the Lytro priced like a Hula-Hoop, Silly Putty, a Rubik's Cube, a lava lamp, or a Barbie, millions might sell. A collector who kept one in its package or mint condition might be able to sell it for a substantial sum ... in 2112 ... if he manages to live until then. The trouble would be how to re-engineer a battery no longer in production, or find a device that still used USB ports.

1 upvote
Gully Foyle
By Gully Foyle (Oct 9, 2012)

The technology is very interesting and I think promising. If only it could fit in a phone and backed by a big company, say, Google or Apple. That would make much more sense and, IMHO, LYTRO's best chance for survival.

1 upvote
SeeRoy
By SeeRoy (Oct 9, 2012)

I imagine that all the early adopters will be trading in their Mk 1 versions and placing advance orders for this stunning upgrade.

4 upvotes
Andrew Booth
By Andrew Booth (Oct 9, 2012)

This concept sucks and will always suck.

You trade resolution, noise and dynamic range performance off for this post-shot focussing gimmick. They're never going to resolve that issue, because they'll always need multiple directional photosensors for each pixel.

4 upvotes
NetMage
By NetMage (Oct 9, 2012)

Did you also think small sensors had a megapixel limit?

The Nokia Pureview 808 at 41MP shows what could be the future of this technology - a very high resolution sensor but instead of trading the resolution for low light capability, trade it for light field capture and have a 2.5MP camera that can do any focus, any DOF or (slight) 3D imaging from a single image capture.

Comment edited 15 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Michal59
By Michal59 (Oct 10, 2012)

To achieve a usable and friendly range of post-focusing one need at least 10x10 pixel array under one microlens. Ng used array of 12x12 pixels in his work as a scientist. I recommend his articles to better understand the idea. Here we have 4x4 array and it is simply enough for gadget-like device. @10x10 array we are talking about 300Mpix sesnor to have 3Mpix resulting picture. Speaking shortly.

1 upvote
facedodge
By facedodge (Oct 9, 2012)

Heard they have the fastest Autofocus around.

;)

Comment edited 10 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Joseph S Wisniewski
By Joseph S Wisniewski (Oct 9, 2012)

No. Their autofocus is slow, and inaccurate. It shouldn't be: the plenoptic system essentially makes the entire sensor a giant phase-detection autofocus sensor.

I think you're trying to be sarcastic, and make a statement about the lytro not actually needing to focus, which is not true. It only increases DOF about 3-4 stops worth vs wide open, and their lens is fast enough and long enough that wide open, the DOF is pretty shallow. It needs good AF to put the subject within that shallow DOF so you can do at least some "refocusing".

2 upvotes
Hugo808
By Hugo808 (Oct 9, 2012)

The whole concept looks like a solution in search of a problem...

9 upvotes
Prairie Pal
By Prairie Pal (Oct 9, 2012)

I can find ONE good thing to say about this camera format: The shape! It's gotta be the easiest camera ever made to find or make your own case.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
WT21
By WT21 (Oct 9, 2012)

Nope. Still lame.

1 upvote
Ace Disgrace
By Ace Disgrace (Oct 9, 2012)

Simplicity *****
Ergonomics -5
Colors **
Image Quality 0
Sensor 0
Dynamic range *
Zoom -0
Sales 0

Seriously who will buy this unless they want to get beaten by their fellow photographers in a photo walk.

It might fool the asian market but im so happy i havent seen them around China or Hong Kong.

Give-up or get bankrupt.

1 upvote
fotoph
By fotoph (Oct 9, 2012)

You can get better image quality from a potato. Does this company really think the limited color palette was the reason no one is buying this lump of junk?

13 upvotes
AlanG
By AlanG (Oct 9, 2012)

Some are excited by the new colors but I'm extremely impressed that a digital camera finally has exposure compensation controls.

What's next? Some magical way to transmit the images over the air?

Comment edited 58 seconds after posting
8 upvotes
VadymA
By VadymA (Oct 9, 2012)

I wonder how easy is it to use this tiny screen even without manual adjustments? Having a viewfinder instead of a screen seems to be much more functional for this tube-like design.

0 upvotes
OldZorki
By OldZorki (Oct 9, 2012)

Yep. This is how Hassy version should look like http://www.opensecrets.org/news/spyglass.jpg

2 upvotes
Tahir Hashmi
By Tahir Hashmi (Oct 10, 2012)

The screen is not only small, it's also low on pixel density, so it's quite difficult to use. I couldn't make out the difference in the on-screen image while switching between near and far focus points.

0 upvotes
photonius
By photonius (Oct 9, 2012)

anybody buying these cameras?

6 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (Oct 9, 2012)

Too techie for most girls and too girlie for most guys so my guess is no.

8 upvotes
abolit
By abolit (Oct 9, 2012)

Nope!

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Oct 9, 2012)

I'd be delighted to read a buyer review. Does one exist? Amazon lists Lytro cases and mounts, but apparently not the camera itself. Most comments are by people who opine on the camera, but don't seem to own one.

0 upvotes
DidiBaev
By DidiBaev (Oct 9, 2012)

Nope!

0 upvotes
makofoto
By makofoto (Oct 9, 2012)

A gal who is coming along with her photography wanted to buy one to shoot at concerts ... she thought it might be easier to sneak in then with her DSLR ... since concerts are very restrictive these days, ie. no interchangeable lens cameras ... but I told her the image quality was so lacking as to make it not worth her while

0 upvotes
Thorbard
By Thorbard (Oct 9, 2012)

She'd be better off working to get a press pass to those events than going for one of these.

0 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (Oct 9, 2012)

The cameras that suck the most have the most color schemes. The world has been begging for Moxie Pink and hallelujah we finally have it!!!

7 upvotes
Steve
By Steve (Oct 9, 2012)

Now, if you are going to insult my Barbie Digital camera, i'm going home.

3 upvotes
OldZorki
By OldZorki (Oct 9, 2012)

I will wait for Hasselblad version, with some precious metals, wood trim and diamond encrusted knob.

15 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (Oct 9, 2012)

Tee hee hee ;)

0 upvotes
danredwing
By danredwing (Oct 9, 2012)

Best Comment ever!

1 upvote
Just a Photographer
By Just a Photographer (Oct 9, 2012)

Don't forget that it WILL have two Hasselblad logo's to make sure that you will be able show off to your executive friends. Rumours say it will be around $7500,00 for the fixed lens version :)

Comment edited 32 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
maxnimo
By maxnimo (Oct 9, 2012)

This would have been the best camera in the world... if it came in lime green.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 56