Difference between Holography and Photography

The primary difference between holography and photography is that holography is a technology used to create three-dimensional (3D) images of an object, whereas photography is one that creates two-dimensional (2D) images of a three-dimensional object. Read this tutorial to find out more about Holography and Photography and how they are different from each other.

What is Holography?

Holography is a technique to generate 3-dimensional images using interference and diffraction of light. It uses a coherent and monochromatic source of light. A hologram is needed to regenerate an image. In other words, holography can be defined as the process of wave recording or method of recording optical images.

Holography is an image formation technique used for creating ornate realities that appear hyper-real. Holography is considered as the precise and indelible tracings of real objects. The term "holography" was first introduced by Dennis Gabor in 1947.

Holography makes use of an interferometric technique in which the phase of a light wave is being recorded together with the amplitude. The image being recorded in the process of holography is absolutely three-dimensional, i.e. each distinct perspective of the image can be visualized by viewing the recorded image from different angles.

What is Photography?

Photography is a technique to generate 2-dimensional images of 3-dimensional objects. A reflecting light after striking the object reacts with the chemical coating of the film. A lens is required to focus the object on the photographic plate.

Photography uses a lens system to focus the image on the photographic plate. In the case of photography, only one plane is focused at a time, while the remaining planes are out of focus. This is how a two-dimensional image of a three-dimensional object is recoded.

In photography, the system records intensity distribution of the light at a plane. The light-sensitive medium senses only the varying intensities of the light, as a result, the phase distribution obtained at the plane of the photograph is lost. Thus, the only reason of the loss of the three-dimensional element in a photograph is the recording of intensity distribution of the scene. Hence, in a photograph, the perspective of the image does not change when it is viewed from different angles. In photography, it is also not possible to refocus the unfocussed parts of an image.

Difference between Holography and Photography

The following table highlights how Holography is different from Photography −





Holography is a technique to generate 3-dimensional images.

Photography is a technique to generate 2-dimensional images.


Interference and diffraction of light is used in holography.

Reflection of light is used in photography.


A coherent and monochromatic light is needed.

No specific light need.


No lens is needed.

Lens is required to focus an object on the plate.

Information Capacity

Information Capacity is high.

Information Capacity is less as compared to holography.


Multiple images can be superimposed onto each other.

Multiple images can't be superimposed.


The most significant difference that you should note here is that Holography generates a 3D image of an object, whereas Photography generates a 2D image of an object.