The Easy-To-Use Fujifilm Instax Range – Our Review On The Latest Mini 11 Model

Amidst the buzz of smartphones and digital cameras, Fujifilm Camera continues to be one of the few makers working on instant cameras. Keeping the traditional experience in mind they launched Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 in February 2020. The rounded built of the camera sports a chic design and is available in blush pink, charcoal gray, ice white, and lilac purple colors. Today we are going to review Mini 11 for you. 

Design 

The plastic frame and round built are crafted to appeal to the younger generation and also lend a playful quality to the camera. Mini 11 has a lighter construction as opposed to its predecessor, Mini 9. The compact size of the camera makes it easy to carry in a small bag or fit into a coat pocket.

It comes with a free strap, shutter button accessories, and a user manual. You do not have to worry about fumbling with buttons because with the easy-to-use configuration even a kid can operate it with ease. You simply have to press the button next to the lens to switch it on and the lens barrel will expand itself. After this, you just have to press the shutter button to take your shots. 

Both the sides of the camera come with a strap hole and the shutter button accessories give an option for customisations. But, the accessories are not much of an upgrade when it comes to cosmetic refinements. The glue does not stick well and when it comes off, it attracts dust which can spoil the aesthetics of your camera. 

The top of the camera has a slot that generates the picture and it takes around 90 seconds to print it. The right side of the camera has a compartment for AA batteries and on the rear, there is a slot for photo film. There is also a small sticker at the back that keeps a track of the remaining shots. The camera employs the same 62 x 46 mm Instax instant film. 

Key Highlights of Mini 11 

As a successor of Mini 9, some new additions have been made to Fujifilm Instax Mini 11. With its automatic exposure system, the user does not have to manually set the exposure but simply press the shutter button to click the picture. This feature automatically adjusts and optimises the flash and shutter speed based on the lighting to produce the shot. So this instant camera can give better results on a sunny day as well as in a dim-lit restaurant. 

As a part of the auto exposure system, the flash will automatically fire with every click irrespective of lighting. This is done to minimise the chance of overexposed or underexposed shots. However, there is a chance of getting overexposed clicks in an outdoor setting because of flash. The camera does a good job with ambient lighting and indoor setting and makes for an adequate option when used outdoors. 

Another noteworthy feature of the camera is the selfie mode which will improve your selfie game and work well for close-up shots. All you have to do is pull the barrel of the lens and it will extend to give the selfie mode. But a lot of people might miss this feature as it remains hidden within the lens. It is also a little difficult to retract from the selfie mode by simply pushing the lens. Nonetheless, it is good for close-up shots. 

It also comes with an auto power-off feature that switches off the camera if it remains unused beyond 5 minutes. 

Mini 9 vs Mini 11

As far as cosmetic refinements are taken into account, there is not much difference between Mini 9 and Mini 11. The latter is just more compact and rounded with soft edges than the former. The pastel colors of Mini 11 are drawing attention from the Millennials and Generation Z kids. But, Mini 9 has some timeless colors like cobalt blue and smoky white. 

It is the fundamental design of Mini 11 that improves on its predecessor and takes the cake. 

The manual setting of Mini 9 has been replaced by an auto exposure system. With the updated version, you just have to point and shoot! Some people would see this update as a drawback because they will not be able to modify the settings of the camera while some people will appreciate the ease of the automatic setting.

The broad range of shutter speed between 1/2 and 1/250 and the fixed shutter speed of Mini 9 is another point of difference between the two cameras. The range lets Mini 11 adjust the shutter speed based on the brightness of the light and procure a better-looking result. 

What to expect with Instax Fujifilm Camera?

A professional photographer will pick a Fujifilm mirrorless camera over a Fujifilm Instax but they will acknowledge the retro charm of the instant camera.  One might also consider the functionality of instant cameras because the photographs printed by these cameras have a soft finish and muted tones. Sometimes the images do not even look like the real setting.

However, while looking at these apparent drawbacks, one has to keep in mind that instant cameras never claimed to produce high-quality images of their digital counterparts. Many people buy cameras like Mini 11 not because of the image quality but nostalgia. Millennials for their childhood in the 90s and Generation Z for its vintage quality opt for instant cameras. So muted or blurred images have simply become a part of the charm and are not seen as a drawback by consumers. 

Verdict

In the digital age when anyone can capture the moment in the palm of the hand, why are people moving towards an analog setup? It is the tangible quality of the Polaroid pictures which appeal to everyone. 

People want to hold a photograph in their hands than look at it through the screen. However, an instant camera should not be bought as a substitute for a full-fledged, professional camera. If you want to take a trip down memory lane or just have some fun, Mini 11 will make for a decent and affordable choice. 

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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