Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 review: Rekindle the past

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What you’re looking at is not a toy, it’s for real and clicks pictures too but you’re better off picking some other colour. Polaroid was a big craze back in the days when reel photography was appreciated by people from all corners.

The prospect of getting pictures clicked in a flash was the more appealing part about those bulky yet functionally brilliant devices. Fujifilm has resisted the temptation of going the Kodak-way till now and with more products that mix the taste of past with present, their chances of surviving longer become realistic at least for the sake print photography.

Instax Mini 8 is the result of such a mission and with affordable cameras starting from Rs 6,840, the brand is hoping to rekindle everyone’s printed past and taking them beyond realms of digitization of modern era. But do they really have a chance? We hope to answer the same below:

What is it?

Instax is the Polaroid-version camera of yesteryears, which works with film papers and delivers pictures in blink of an eye.

Who is it for?

Anybody with a taste for classics and not technically aligned towards the digital form of imaging devices that are commonly available these days. It might be pricey for the ones looking for a fully-capable camera.

Design

Instax 8 has got a square-shaped figure which can end up being bulky in comparison to the cameras selling these days but that was never meant to pose an issue for Fujifilm. You’ll find the shutter button, viewfinder (which quite frankly is really tiny) and there’s flash support right on top of the camera lens. The lens is embedded with features that are required for a particular image scenario. You can choose between indoor, sunlight (mild and heavy) and cloudy for gloomy conditions. The camera starts up when you press the button placed right below the lens.

The back side of Instax can be opened up wherein the rack of film sits tight and you can keep a track on the number of films that are usable on the tray. The camera is available in myriad colour options which include, Pink, Blue and few more.

How does it work?

Instax is much like every other Polaroid camera that has ever been launched. Select the frame and subject, capture them on the viewfinder with your eyes and click the shutter button (make sure you choose the right settings while clicking) and then see the resulting image popping out on top of the camera in less than 5 seconds.

Performance

The most important aspect for prospective buyers is performance and sadly Instax does not deliver as much as you would expect from any affordable Polaroid option in the market. It clicks pictures alright, but the quality is not what you’d expect from a camera these days. There is too much reliance on the built-in flash unit and even when you make use of it, chances are the picture will have focused and lighten up the subject, while the background goes totally dark. Things are even worse when clicking pictures when the light is not that conducive. The resulting image had nothing to show apart from a black patch all over the film.

Cost of film

Set of 10 – Rs 500
Set of 20 – Rs 800
The films could be pain if you aren’t used to moving around much lately. Thankfully, Fujifilm has managed to offer the films via online site and this ensures you’re not running over to buy them every now and again and that could have been a lot of times, if used quite frequently. There are no battery issues as such, considering the very-little tech aspect about the product and that should come as respite to few.

Worth the buy?

Looking to go back into the past and recall those film-y memories? Fujifilm has you got it covered with the Instax series. But let’s get it straight, the camera is no match for your smartphone camera and the lack of digitization may get you creeped up. Pictures are fairly low on light and the lack of accepting light feels kind of a letdown. Go for the fun and not its play.

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