Lytro Light Field Camera
Shooting with the Lytro
The camera has two modes: Everyday mode, which allows refocusing across the entire scene and Creative mode, which allows the refocusability to be concentrated around your subject.
In Everyday mode, because the refocusability range is set so that it extends back from infinity, there's a minimum working distance at which your subject will be acceptably sharp. And, just as when dealing with depth-of-field, you need to consider what you consider acceptable sharpness - sharpness drops-off as the subject gets near to the front of that range.
On the LFC, this working distance extends from around 125mm (5 inches) at wide angle, to a 1.5m (5 feet) as you zoom. In fact, the zoom is limited to a 3.5x (around 35-122mm equivalent) in Everyday mode to prevent the working range becoming ridiculous. And, even then, the objects at the front of the range won't be super-sharp - the closer they are, the less sharp they'll be, even when refocused.
|Lytro has created a video to show how to get the best results from the camera (note the need for close working distances)|
Creative mode, meanwhile, gives you access to the zoom's entire 8x (35-280mm equiv.) range. Because in this mode you're able to specify the center of the refocusability range, rather than it being automatically set, you can ensure your subject has the best possible sharpness. It also means you can shoot subjects so they're all-but touching the lens. However, the closer your subject and the longer the focal length you use, the shallower the refocusability range becomes.
As a consequence, the best images (from the point of view of giving the viewer something to play around with), are ones with several depths to explore and where the subject is very close to the camera and the background is a long way away. This can make the 1:1 aspect ratio a little limiting, since it's hard to leave space around your subject for the viewer to go off and explore.
|There's also a video explaining how to use the Creative mode|
In a slightly back-to-front manner, it's the Creative mode that comes closest to fulfilling the early promises of a camera where you can fix focus after shooting, because you can specify where the maximum sharpness is concentrated (And if you're trying to correct the focus in an image, it's likely that you want the maximum sharpness and you probably managed to focus fairly near what you intended). However, it's also the mode in which a camera not really designed for refocusing needs to refocus its lens before you can get the shot, so you don't get the instant-shooting benefits of the no-focus Everyday mode.
Meanwhile the Everyday mode is quick and easy to shoot with but it's also the one that requires greatest thought in terms of arranging a scene and composing a shot in order to give an explorable 'living picture.'
There's also the issue of a strange cross-hatched banding pattern that appears in high-ISO images (and a peculiar rendering of point light sources in those images), but that isn't a primary concern for us, given the other limitations.
At present, plugging your camera into your Mac prompts your computer to download the Lytro software and back your camera up. Once this is done, you are left with a good-looking and pretty rapid piece of software that allows you to arrange your images into groups (called 'Stories'), to export JPEGs or to upload either to the Lytro site or onto Facebook (via the Lytro site).
|Once downloaded onto your computer, you get the first chance to really get a feel for what you've shot.|
Each time you plug the camera in it will download your images and ask if you want to then remove them from the camera's internal memory. Plug in your camera without any images on it and it'll attempt to chivvy you into going out shooting.
The version of the software we're running doesn't allow you to zoom into the images in to see their full 1080 x 1080 resolution. To do that you need to upload to the Lytro site though we're promised the feature is coming. Also, at present the captions you add on the Lytro site are limited to a rather restrictive 255 characters, so the description has to be closer to a Tweet than a novelette.
|The (currently Mac-only) software allows you to arrange your images into groups, export JPEGs and check the shooting details, but not a lot else.|
Feb 24, 2015
Feb 13, 2015
Aug 12, 2013
Jun 19, 2013
|Madrid subway by MAGMATCICO62|
from Your City - Public Transport
|Incandescent Bulb by Kukla|
from Illuminate- Macro only
|Curiousity by PERCY2|
from Macro - Your Best Macro Ever
|Hoar Frosted Trees by sabishiT3T|
There's never been a better time to shop for a new camera, but the number of options available can be overwhelming. In this series of buying guides we've provided customized recommendations for several use cases, from shooting landscapes to buying a first camera for a student photographer.
Shopping for a camera with a set budget? No problem! We've rounded up our favorite cameras, broken them into price brackets and picked the best of the bunch.
Looking for a lightweight compact camera that's easy to bring with you anywhere? Or maybe you're smartphone-shopping and want the one that takes the best picture. And what if you want to shoot from above? In these buyers guides we have recommendations for the best compact cameras, smartphones and drones.
Despite reports to the contrary, analysis of DPReview images by our friend Jim Kasson confirms a disappointing fact: Sony a7R III is still a Star Eater. But there may be some improvements.
As the saying goes: A photo is worth a thousand words. And if you're sending that photo through Facebook Messenger, your thousand words now look twice as nice after today's update to 4K resolution.
Get to know the new Leica CL in short order by giving our 90 second 'First look' video a watch.
Leica has just released the CL, the forth in its series of APS-C L-mount cameras. Despite sharing a name with a camera released in the mid-70s, the new CL is a thoroughly modern ILC, with a 24MP sensor and built-in electronic viewfinder.
The Leica CL is a 24MP rangefinder-style mirrorless camera, which sits alongside the TL2 in the company's APS-C lineup. We've been using one for a few days – check out our gallery of images.
While it shares a name with one of Leica's most popular and affordable cameras of the 1970s, the new CL is separated from its namesake by more than just years. We've been using one for a few days - click through for a detailed first-impressions report.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017, and the #4 ranking goes to the Leica M10.
Sigma is discounting 13 different high-performance 'Art' series lenses from today until November 30th. The company is calling it an 'unprecedented' sale.
See DJI's 'AeroScope' drone-tracking technology in action. This is the system that DJI says can help law enforcement and airport (among others) track and identify rogue drones.
iPhone X owners can already accessorize their new phone with high-quality smartphone photography lenses courtesy of Moment's new lineup.
Considering buying Sigma's exciting new 16mm F1.4 DC DN Contemporary lens for crop-sensor E-Mount and M43? Check out these official full-res samples first!
Vimeo has just added support for 8K HDR 10-bit content, making it possible to show up to 75% of the colors the human eye can perceive vs the usual 35%. Take THAT YouTube.
The holidays are coming, but your gear isn't cutting it? It's time to treat yourself!
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017, and sitting pretty at #5 is the Fujifilm X-T20.
See some of the most iconic black-and-white photographs throughout history brought to life by a community of colorization enthusiasts and professional retouchers in the new book Retrographic.
Shopping for a photographer? Whether you are one yourself or not, chances are you could use some ideas. From stocking stuffers on up, we've got some photography gift suggestions for every budget.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017. Drum roll please... the #6 spot belongs to none other than the Sigma 85mm F1.4 DH HSM Art.
Read the story behind this gorgeous wedding photo captured at Trolltunga in Norway by husband and wife duo Priscila Valentina Photography. The 14 hour hike in the rain that preceded this shot was TOTALLY worth it.
Go behind the scenes with filmmaker Nick Arcivos, who recently created a beautiful cinematic short film in Paris using only the iPhone X, a couple of gimbals, and a few lights. The results are very impressive.
A Bay Area startup offering a pay-by-the-photo camera service cleverly addresses the pain points photographers experience when they pick up their first DSLR. But can it survive the smartphone?
It's been a big year for software innovations, dual cameras and huge displays. Take a look at our picks for the top smartphone cameras and why we think they stand out.
We're counting down our top 10 most popular sample galleries of 2017. At the #7 spot is the ready-for-any-weather Olympus Tough TG-5.
By combining his skills as a time-lapse filmmaker and an engineer, Julian Tryba created this out-of-this-world creative 'layer-lapse' of New York City that alternates between night and day in time with the music.
Canon Japan's new lineup of novelty camera-themed gifts was just revealed online, including a lens mug and lens thermos, two retro camera-themed USB drives, and a picnic mat.
The Profoto A1 most certainly isn’t for everyone [...] But for those who are used to using the Profoto systems, and want something that pairs seamlessly with the strobes you already have, there is no better companion.
Fujifilm has asked a US district court to clear it of any wrongdoing, after allegedly being threatened with trademark litigation by Polaroid.
While a couple of our reviewers are out testing the Sony a7R III in Arizona, back in Seattle we slapped the camera in front of our studio scene to get a close look at its image quality. See how it stacks up against the competition.