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A Smartphone Size Camera to Replace DSLRs

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The L16 from startup Light has been floating around for around 2 years. It's a curious device that aims to replace DSLRs in a smartphone sized device. By using 15 individual sensors and lenses of varying focal lengths, megapixels, and apertures, Light promises the L16 can get DSLR quality with smartphone convenience, but still at a DSLR price tag of ~$2,000.



The WSJ has the first review I've seen, and it seems to work pretty well. It suffers in the places that you'd expect anything using a smartphone sized sensor to suffer: low light and telephoto. Telephoto shots look better than you might expect, but you don't get nearly the same amount of information as you do at shorter focal lengths, limiting shots to 16 rather than 52 MP.


Because of all the info it's collecting, the Light is capable of refocusing and blurring backgrounds after the fact. Smartphones can do this to some degree, but with the L16, it's actually using information from other cameras, so it seems the blur isn't nearly as fake as it is in a phone.


The reviewer also mentions how slow it is, but hopes it can get better over time with software updates.


I think this is a very cool idea and I'd seriously consider one if DP review thought highly of it, if it weren't for the price tag. It seems like a great competitor to cameras like the Sony RX100, which retails for somewhere between $500-1000 depending on the model you get. That's solidly in the "I'll pay for better image quality, but don't want to lug around my DSLR or mirrorless rig" category.

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took a double take to check that it wasn't april 1st, this design is absolutely ridiculous and the focus after the fact is just laziness and poor framing on the photographer. 28/70/150 seem like terrible fov's as well.

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