Lytro shifts focus to the high-end shooter with new $1599 ‘ILLUM’ light-field camera

“Though it sports the same light-field technology, Lytro’s second camera bares little resemblance to its first effort, which debuted more than two years ago,” Ina Fried reports for Re/code. “Whereas the first model was aimed at consumers and looked a bit like a square kaleidoscope, the forthcoming Lytro Illum (pronounced ill-loom) has both the appearance and price tag of a professional’s SLR camera.”

“Among the features of the Illum is an 8x zoom lens that can shoot at fast f2.0 speeds throughout its range — a feature that typically shows up only on professional lenses costing thousands of dollars,” Fried reports. “That combined with a fast 1/4000 of a second top shutter speed means the new Lytro camera could have particular appeal to sports photographers.”

“Like the first model, the Illum captures shots that can be displayed in 3D and focused after the fact,” Fried reports. “The camera is slated to cost $1,599 and ship in July, though those who preorder through can save $100. The company plans to sell the camera online and also hopes to get the Illum in some camera stores and other retailers.”

Lytro ILLUM camera
Lytro ILLUM camera

“Because the camera captures rays of light and not just pixels, it’s hard to compare the quality to a standard digital camera,” Fried reports, “but Lytro says it has four times the resolution of the first Lytro camera, and still images taken from it will look good at least up to 8×10 size.”

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Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
Apple patents Lytro-like refocusable light-field camera suitable for iPhone – November 26, 2013
In his last months, Steve Jobs met with light field camera-maker Lytro CEO – January 24, 2012


  1. I wish that was provided PLUS the equivalent megapixels. The first was 11 megarays but, when converted to a regular picture, it was a one megapixel image. Would that make this one 4 megapixels?

  2. The large size of the camera, the soft focus, low resolution, not to mention the price means it will not sell.
    This company needs to be bought out with someone with the money and camera expertise to get it over these huge roadblocks.

  3. Amazing technology, and the physics behind it makes great reading, but I still don’t see the point of the whole thing for ordinary photography. Maybe for microscopy (would it even work with a microscope?), or forensic photography, or to picture 3D specimens in low light where you can’t stop down to get depth of field?

    1. Actually, this new camera is perfectly suited for ordinary photography. Think about how often people get out of focus shots on their cameras through inattentiveness or just plain old ineptitude. The only problem here is its price and resolution – and it’s a double edged sword. It’s too expensive for the people who would benefit from it most and the resolution is far too low for the semi professionals and professionals.

  4. Nice design but still too expensive. I know development costs a lot, but it also shows that small companies can’t get the prices down to really get enough traction for their innovative products. I would buy one. It’s only 5 megapixels, but it needs to go down in price to sub $699.

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