Yeah, this thing is weird.
It’s a camera, yes, but it doesn’t work like any camera which I’ve ever used before or since, with the exception of its older sibling, the original Lytro camera.
I’ve enjoyed playing with it, but I just can’t find a use case. The design looks nice, and there are some very well thought through ideas – such as the tilted screen: if you push gently on the bottom it goes perfectly vertical, useful when shooting at eye level.
That said, it is painfully slow, the pictures are low resolution if “flattened” to a jpg, and the 3d effect looses interest after a while. The body is plasticy and feels cheap after being used to Canon’s sturdy bodies and some details, such as the door on the SD card slot, are just poorly designed. While it may look cool, it is very difficult to get that little door open, worse so if the strap is attached.
That said, and perhaps not surprisingly, it is a massively better camera than the original Lytro camera. Better controls, bigger screen with more interactivity, etc. Had the company not already changed directions, it may have been interesting to see where they went in the future with this line of thinking.
- Far easier to use than the prior Lytro version 1
- Slick looking design
- Rotating rings on lens can be optionally set and used for zoom, aperture
- New Lytro button selectes ideal focus spot for best depth of field later
- Tilted screen is well thought out
- Large touch screen is responsive and gorgeous to look at, menus seems more akin to a smart phone app than a camera
- Gorgeous industrial design – pleasure to look at!
- The lens is larger than I thought it would be – this camera gets more attention than you might think
- Is this an evolutionary dead end?
- Requires a new way of thinking about picture taking
- Proprietary format, requires processing to be useful
- No Lightroom plugin
- Requires Lytro company to host images online
- Body feels surprisingly cheap and plasticy for a camera designed for the professional market
- Strange access doors; not nearly as well refined as true pro cameras
- To view images in camera must wait a few seconds for camera to do a quick in camera processing
- Matte finish picks up fingerprints super fast
- There is only one flash certified to work with the Lytro – and its third party, extremely rare and expensive. Why they didnt adopt something existing and available is beyond my understanding.
- Make sure your camera is updated to the latest firmware. Even though the update is somewhat old, when I received my unit it had an older firmware, and boy did the upgrade make the camera beter!
- Uses SD cards
- Propriary battery and charger
Rough review on the Verge
Manual PDF from Lytro