Monday, August 20, 2012

Item of the Moment: Lytro Camera

A new YSL lipstick?
A camera that captures light from all angles? Sounds intriguing! How about a camera that does not have auto focus? Doesn't that sound a bit--for lack of a better word--primitive? Lytro is here to prove both of these are possible with its newest camera. Since it does not have autofocus, it doesn't need a shutter! So all those precious moments are captured in a snap (quite literally I might add!). The camera's special feature is its ability to allow users to focus and re-focus the subject(s) in the images as they see fit. This is made possible because of the camera's ability to absorb light from all angles. See it in action here.

The form factor of the Lytro resembles a big tube of lipstick; this incorporates an 8X optical zoom as well as a fixed aperture of f/2, which means it can work well in low lighting because the aperture is opened so darn wide. Still I'd recommend to use a tripod since there is no built-in flash.

More goodies: it has a very fancy 1.5 inch multitouch screen display, reminding me of how far displays have grown over the years (remember when 1.8 inch was considered big?), an 8 GB internal memory (there is 16 GB available too) to save your snaps, and an 11 "megarays" sensor. To be honest, I have no idea what megarays means, but that's what the product description provided.

For the design aficionados out there, I believe you'd appreciate the construction and shape of the Lytro. It's made out of an anodized aluminum case with a textured silicone rubber grip. The overall effect is very minimal and industrial and totally compact, in my opinion.

The Lytro is now available online. The base model (8 GB) comes in graphite and electric blue and retails for $399. The 16 GB version only comes in red, and retails for $499.

To learn more about the mechanics of the Lytro camera, watch this quick video, care of the folks from Engadget.

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