Lytro Support/Knowledgebase/Lytro Camera - Information

How does the Lytro Light Field Camera work?

adam gould
posted this on October 19, 2011 05:00 AM

The Lytro Light Field Camera captures significantly more data than a conventional camera does.

At the highest level, light entering the Lytro camera goes though the main lens and then hits our proprietary Lytro Light Field Sensor.  The Lytro Light Field Sensor incorporates a special compound lens known as a micro-lens array (MLA), which is comprised of thousands of tiny lenses. This special sensor is what allows the Lytro camera to take in all of the light in the scene, capturing information on the direction, color, and luminosity of millions of individual rays of light. 

  • This rich set of data is then provisionally processed by the Lytro camera, letting you refocus each "living picture" directly on the camera. 
  • Later, the Lytro Desktop software computes the light field more fully, creating even richer and more detailed versions of each living picture. 
  • Finally, your friends and family can experience your living pictures without needing to install any special software. Once you share living pictures, they are automatically "ready to go" on any supported computer, smartphone, or tablet connected to the internet.


TIP: For a (very) technical, detailed description of the underlying technology, feel free to read our founder Ren Ng's PhD thesis.

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