Fujifilm Instax: Share pictures without the Internet
If you want to buy a Fujifilm Instax, the most popular models to choose between are Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300. In this post, we will compare these three models of instant cameras. Instant cameras are fun to use but are it worth buying in times of smartphones and Instagram filters?
The Fujifilm Instax instant cameras are now available in every camera shop. The most popular models include the Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300. All the above-mentioned three cameras have one thing in common: after finger presses the trigger, you soon get the photographs in your hand. Instead of gazing at photos on the back display as with digital cameras, you can immediately hold them in hand.
This evokes nostalgic memories of Polaroid cameras, which have enjoyed great popularity since the late 1950s, but especially in the 1980s. After that, instant cameras lead to a niche existence. The Fujifilm Instax series now wants to initiate a renaissance with the Mini 8, Mini 90 and Wide 300.
But can that work these days?
But which model is the right one? We will compare Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300 below.
Which Fujifilm Instax to buy?
The key question is: Who should buy a Fujifilm Instax anyway?
Most, if not nearly all, photographers are used to taking photos and then immediately sharing them with others. Sure, that’s exactly what instant cameras can do too.
The difference, however, is that there is exactly one print of each picture. The Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300 do not take a digital photo. This is impractical at parties, for example, when all the people in a group picture want to take a picture. In those cases, either print again or scan the photo later and send it digitally.
Trigger once, pay once
Most owners will then probably opt for the scanning solution. After all, the Fujifilm Instax uses analog film. Every tap on the shutter button costs money – not to mention the headache of buying a camera film roll.
A package with two ten photos costs around 20 dollars. Therefore, having a single photograph with Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300 can cost up to one dollar.
However, photographers are okay with high costs because they can examine their work immediately. This argument seems a bit outdated in the age of digital cameras.
Also, the image quality of the Fujifilm Instax can hardly keep up even with the cheapest digital camera: the small prints appear blurred, poor in detail, and with vignetting. The credit card-sized photos of the Mini 8 and Mini 90 are also somewhat small. The wide-screen images of the Wide 900 measure twice as much. You can find more detail in our specific model review.
Fujifilm Instax: which model to buy?
But despite all these flaws, we had more fun with the Fujifilm Instax than we had in a long time. The prime lens forces creative thinking. The analog film stimulates thinking about whether this motif is worth a photo. The meaning of each picture increases significantly. Also, Mini 8, Mini 90, and Wide 300 are the star at every party.
Friends and relatives admire these cameras and also want a photo of themselves. You will hear comments like “I want a camera like this too!” several times in the evening. And digital cameras will certainly not be able to give you this experience.
Fujifilm Instax Mini 8: The entry-level model
The Fujifilm Instax mini 8 proves to be the affordable model in the series with a decent purchase price.
However, the equipment is quite rudimentary: only up to 2.7 meters long flash, 60 mm fixed focal length with aperture F12.7 and a small, optical viewfinder are on the approximately 0.95 pounds plastic housing.
Apart from five exposure options such as high-key, cloudy sky, and sun, there are no manual options.
This makes the Mini 8 for those who just want to have fun with affordable price instant camera. Two alkaline batteries are included with the wrist strap and are said to hold up to 100 shots according to the manufacturer.
Instax Wide 300: The landscape model
Twice as big, with 2.10 pounds is almost twice as heavy – but also twice as wide pictures: The anything but handy Wide 300 looks chunky, but we love the picture from this model.
Due to the generous format, the Wide 300 seems predestined for landscape photography. The focal length of 95 mm and F12 has a regular focus distance of three meters. For portraits, this can be reduced to 0.9 to 3 meters – the built-in flash does not go any further.
The flashlight can be deactivated; the small LCD is practical to check the number of remaining images.
Fujifilm Instax Mini 90: The professional model
Our favorite model among all three in this comparison is the Instax Mini 90. The two-tone housing reinforces the retro flair. A total of six selectable shooting modes such as double exposure, macro, and even bulb and double exposure allow creative scope.
Settings and the number of residual images can be read on the monochrome LC display. There is even an electronically controlled shutter from 1/60 to 1/400 seconds behind the 60 mm lens. It is also convenient that the Mini 90 comes with a flat lithium battery including a charging cradle.
This saves the follow-up costs for batteries – and keeps the weight around 0.65 pounds.
The only drawback: a handle curve like the other models is missing. The camera is only partially comfortable to hold.