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10 Best Instant Cameras in 2023 (Polaroid, Instax, & More!)

Last updated: September 21, 2023 - 18 min read
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Finding the best instant camera involves pinpointing a quality, convenient, and easy-to-use camera. There has been an increase in the popularity of instant cameras in the last five years. And there are even new ones being released this year!

To find the best instant camera, you should consider the print quality, performance, and price. So we have reviewed all available options to give you our top 10 picks. Our first choice is the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12. This is because of its great portability, superb image quality, and extra features, all for a very reasonable price.

Our Top 3 Choices for The Best Instant Camera
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1

 

What Is the Best Instant Camera?

Here is a quick roundup table of our top choices. You can go to our buyer’s guide and FAQ section if you’re looking for more info about instant cameras.

Our Top Choice
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
  • Easy to operate with selfie mode
  • Auto exposure and flash control
  • Close-up mode with parallax correction
  • Compact size and lightweight
  • Retro design and variety of fun colors to choose from
Most Compact
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
  • Portable and wearable, so you can take it anywhere
  • Simple to operate
  • Selfie mirror and built-in self-timer
  • Double exposure feature for more creative vision
  • Uses Polaroid Go film for classic Polaroid magic
Best for Square Prints
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
  • Simple operation with just two buttons
  • Automatically adjusts brightness and shutter speed
  • Built-in selfie mirror
  • Instant prints in 1.5 seconds
  • Compact, easy-to-use design
Best for Big Prints
Fujifilm Instax Wide 300
Fujifilm Instax Wide 300
Fujifilm Instax Wide 300
  • 95mm f/14 lens with two focus zones
  • Exposure compensation for adjusting shots
  • Light and dark control for high- and low-key effects
  • Automatic and fill-in flash for low-light shooting
  • Close-up lens adapter for 15.5" / 40 cm shots
Most Retro
Polaroid Originals Now I-Type
Polaroid Originals Now I-Type
Polaroid Originals Now I-Type
  • Autofocus for easy capturing of moments
  • Double exposure and self-timer to get everyone in the picture
  • 7 colors to choose from
  • 10-15 minute development time
  • Compatible with Polaroid i-Type and 600 film
Best for Professionals
Lomography Lomo’Instant Automat
Lomography Lomo’Instant Automat
Lomography Lomo’Instant Automat
  • 4 lens types—35mm, wide-angle, close-up, fish-eye
  • Built-in flash and self-mirror
  • Exposure compensation
  • Multiple- and long-exposure shots
  • Creative exposure and filter accessories
Best for Travel
Fujifilm Instax Mini 90
Fujifilm Instax Mini 90
Fujifilm Instax Mini 90
  • High-quality prints in seconds
  • Automatically adjusts flash and shutter speed
  • Double exposure and macro modes
  • 10 second bulb mode for long exposures
  • Premium build quality and stylish, retro design
Most Unique
InstantFlex TL70 2.0
InstantFlex TL70 2.0
InstantFlex TL70 2.0
  • Variable aperture from f/5.6-22
  • Aperture Priority mode and auto variable-power flash
  • Bulb mode, tripod mount, 10 s long exposure
  • Comes with neutral density filters
  • Classic Twin Lens Reflex design
Best for Printing
Kodak Mini Shot 3
Kodak Mini Shot 3
Kodak Mini Shot 3
  • 10 MP resolution for sharp images
  • Easy to use with one-button operation
  • Built-in printer for instant prints
  • Bluetooth connectivity for printing and sharing
  • Compact and lightweight design
Great for Travel
Fujifilm Instax Mini 40
Fujifilm Instax Mini 40
Fujifilm Instax Mini 40
  • Built-in automatic exposure for ideal pictures every time
  • Easy and straightforward controls
  • Built-in one-touch selfie mode and mirror
  • Attractive credit-size prints
  • Classic, deluxe design with comfortable handling

 

10 Best Instant Cameras

Read on to find out more about each camera in detail.

1. Fujifilm Instax Mini 12

Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Brand
Brand
Fujifilm
Focal Length
Focal Length
60mm
Weight
Weight
292 g
Colors
Colors
Blossom pink, lilac purple, clay white, mint green, pastel blue
Film Type
Film Type
Fujifilm Instax Mini
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Easy to operate, auto exposure and flash, selfie mode, parallax correction
Best For
Best For
People looking for a cheap but very capable instant camera

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 12 is the newest instant camera on our list. The hugely successful Instax Mini range is so popular I wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve seen them being used in public.

It produces 2 x 3-inch prints that print within 5 seconds and then takes about 90 seconds to develop. The most recent version focuses on making the user experience as smooth and easy as possible.

One new addition is twisting the lens to turn the camera on. This is a bit easier and quicker to operate than the old button under the lens. And Fujifilm has also made close-up shooting a whole lot easier.

Rangefinder cameras don’t allow you to view through the lens. So when shooting close up, it can be hard to frame. But you can now adjust the viewfinder for parallax correction to ensure the whole subject is in the frame!

The Instax Mini 12 still has a selfie mirror and is perfect for taking pictures with friends. And the Instax Mini series does an exceptional job of ensuring the whole frame is correctly exposed, even when using the flash at night!

Considering all these points, this is the best instant camera for simple and detailed photographs. And you can buy a variety of fun Instax Mini film packs with different borders.

 

2. Polaroid Go

Polaroid Go
Brand
Brand
Polaroid Originals
Focal Length
Focal Length
51.1mm
Weight
Weight
242 g
Colors
Colors
White
Film Type
Film Type
Polaroid Go
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Compact design, double exposure, selfie timer and mirror
Best For
Best For
Kids, families, or those who want a very portable instant camera

The Polaroid Go is the world’s smallest instant camera. But despite its size, it is packed with special features. It can take double exposures and has a self-timer and a tiny selfie mirror.

This is the best instant camera if you are looking for portability. It’s perfect for carrying around your neck wherever you go. And it’s ideal for travel photography or even day trips!

This instant camera is super simple to operate. So the whole family can take pictures with it. This makes it the perfect instant camera to bring to a party with your friends. And it’s also perfect for kids who are starting in photography.

Polaroid is the most famous brand for instant cameras. So you can trust that the Polaroid Go is up to scratch. I recommend this camera for people who want to take their instant camera everywhere!

You can buy the Polaroid bundle with film. Or you can buy the Polaroid Go instant film separately with white or black frames.

 

3. Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1

Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Brand
Brand
Fujifilm
Focal Length
Focal Length
65mm, 75mm
Weight
Weight
394 g
Colors
Colors
Glacier blue, terracotta orange, chalk white
Film Type
Film Type
Instax Square
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Automatic exposure, selfie mode, stylish design, prints in seconds
Best For
Best For
Beginner photographers and printing retro-looking square photos

The Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1 is not only stylish but also comes with several creative features. And as its name suggests, the SQ1 instant film comes in a 1:1 square format.

This instant camera features automatic exposure control. This function allows you to get better shots in low-light conditions. And it brightens both the subject and the background at the same time.

And its selfie mode automatically adjusts exposure and focal length. This helps to frame the shot thanks to the attached selfie mirror. This also works great for close-up photography!

The Instax Square SQ1 operates similarly to the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12. You turn the lens to turn on the camera. And you can then turn the lens some more to activate the selfie mode.

I recommend this camera to photographers who love the square aesthetic, like Instagram’s. Its simple operation makes it a brilliant choice for beginners. And the available colors make it the perfect camera to match your preferred aesthetic.

 

4. Fujifilm Instax Wide 300

Fujifilm Instax Wide 300
Brand
Brand
Fujifilm
Focal Length
Focal Length
95mm
Weight
Weight
612 g
Colors
Colors
Black, toffee
Film Type
Film Type
Instax Wide
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Big photo prints, close-up lens, automatic and fill-in flash, exposure compensation
Best For
Best For
Photographers who want larger prints and the most detail out of an instant camera

If you can’t get used to tiny photos, the Fujifilm Instax Wide 300 is for you. This instant camera is designed to deliver larger prints. Photo dimensions are 3 x 4 inches (86 × 108 mm), twice the size of other Instax models.

This camera is chunkier than others. But it is built with light plastic and has some great features. It comes with a close-up lens which allows you to shoot up to 15.5 inches (40 cm) from the subject. Plus, it features automatic flash and exposure compensation.

The Instax Wide 300 is also great for group photos, as it comes with a tripod socket. I recommend this camera for photographers who want lots of detail from their instant camera. The Instax Wide film is sold separately,

 

5. Polaroid Originals Now

Polaroid Originals Now I-Type
Brand
Brand
Polaroid Originals
Focal Length
Focal Length
95mm, 103 mm
Weight
Weight
445 g
Colors
Colors
Black, Blue, Red, Yellow, White, pink
Film Type
Film Type
Polaroid 600, Polaroid i-Type
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Dual-lens with autofocus, double exposure, selfie timer, USB-charger, retro design
Best For
Best For
Polaroid lovers

The Polaroid Originals Now is the instant camera on our list with the best exposure and image quality. This is the best Polaroid camera for photography.

It’s another fantastic option to bring your camera on a trip. The USB-chargeable battery has a longer life than other instant cameras. And it allows you to shoot up to 120 photos after every full charge.

Another great feature is its autofocus lens system which has been improved from previous versions. This system makes it easier to get sharper subjects and better shots.

This instant camera is also a good option for double exposures. And this Polaroid model also has a handy selfie timer.

Due to its image quality and multiple features, the Polaroid Now is one of the best Polaroid cameras you can buy. You can buy a camera bundle that includes film. Or you can buy the Polaroid 600 film or Polaroid i-Type film with black-and-white or color borders separately.

 

The Lomography Lomo’Instant Automat is the best camera for instant wide-angle photography. It’s unique because it has 4 types of lenses. It has a built-in 35mm-equivalent lens, and a close-up, fish-eye, and wide-angle lens!

This instant camera has many special features that make it a great choice. This includes a large aperture, exposure compensation, and a remote control shutter release. And it is the perfect choice if you are looking for creative features.

You can take multiple- or long-exposure shots in Bulb mode. It comes with a Splitzer attachment that shields the lens for interesting “slice-and-dice” photos. And it has color gel flash filters.

The Lomo’Instant Automat delivers pocket-sized prints. And it uses Fujifilm Instax Mini film. I suggest this instant camera for photographers who want a serious instant camera.

Of course, this level of an instant camera comes at a higher price. So it may be best for people who take photos on instant cameras most of the time.

 

7. Fujifilm Instax Mini 90

Fujifilm Instax Mini 90
Brand
Brand
Fujifilm
Focal Length
Focal Length
60mm
Weight
Weight
296 g
Colors
Colors
Black, Brown
Film Type
Film Type
Instax Mini
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Programmed shutter speed and flash, macro, landscape, and long-exposure modes, retro look
Best For
Best For
Travel photographers or those who want a versatile, compact instant camera

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 is one of the best instant cameras you can buy. As you can see, it has a trendy retro design, making it a pleasure to take out and show off. Not only is it available in brown, but it comes in a cool black too.

It’s ideal because it has a programmed flash and shutter speed setting (1.8 to 1/400 s) according to the lighting conditions. And it provides you with high-quality prints in seconds.

It has a macro mode for close-up shots (12-24 inches / 30-60 cm). And it has a slow shutter speed mode (up to 10 seconds), which is great for capturing light trails and movement. On top of that, it has a double exposure mode to capture two scenes in one print.

The Instax Mini 90 is a perfect companion for several situations. It includes a Party mode, Kids mode, and Landscape mode. Consider this instant camera if you want a versatile compact camera to keep close by in your camera bag.

This is another camera that takes Fujifilm Instax Mini film.

 

8. InstantFlex TL70 2.0

InstantFlex TL70 2.0
Brand
Brand
Mint
Focal Length
Focal Length
61mm
Weight
Weight
525 g
Colors
Colors
Black
Film Type
Film Type
Instax Mini film
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Variable aperture, auto, variable-power flash, close-up lens, Bokeh and Bulb modes, ND filters
Best For
Best For
Photographers who want extensive features and a uniquely designed camera

The InstantFlex TL70 2.0 from Mint is our list’s most expensive instant camera. But it has great features that make it one of our favorites.

Most instant cameras come in a square, retro design. But this instant camera aims to innovate, recreating the look of a Rolleiflex camera with a secondary viewfinder.

What makes InstantFlex unique is its twin lens. This feature allows a wide range of apertures, including a Bokeh mode. And it also has an Aperture Priority mode with shutters speeds between 1 and 1/400 s.

This instant camera is perfect for night shooting. It includes an automatic, powerful flash that can be adjusted. And light painting is also possible thanks to its 10-second Bulb mode and tripod mount.

It also comes with several accessories. A close-up lens and neutral-density filters are included. And it creates 54 x 86 mm prints (46 x 62mm images) with Instax Mini film.

The TL70 2.0 is for photographers who love the analog aesthetic. It’s ideal for people who like a more hands-on approach to their photography.

.

9. Kodak Mini Shot 3

Kodak Mini Shot 3
Brand
Brand
Kodak
Focal Length
Focal Length
70mm
Weight
Weight
400 g
Colors
Colors
Yellow and black
Film Type
Film Type
Kodak 3 x 3-inch film
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
10 MP resolution, easy, one-button operation, Bluetooth for portable printing and photo sharing, creative filters with an app, cost-saving film
Best For
Best For
Casual photographers or those who enjoy playing with filters

The Mini Shot 3 is a great instant camera from the photography giant Kodak. This instant camera has a slim design that produces square images. It comes in bundles that include the Kodak 3 x 3-inch film.

One of the biggest selling points of this instant camera is that it also functions as a portable polaroid printer! This means you can print out photos taken on your camera phone.

I also like that the instant camera shows you your photo before you print it out. This means you can check to see if it is blurry or not! At this point, you can also apply some creative filters to your images with the Kodak printer app.

Kodak claims this instant camera and film are more cost-effective over time than any other. So this is worth considering if you plan to use your instant camera daily.

The Kodak Mini Shot 3 is a perfect instant camera for casual photographers. I suggest it for people who like to make fun edits to their photos. And it also suits people who want to print multiple photos and hand them to friends!

 

10. Fujifilm Instax Mini 40

Fujifilm Instax Mini 40
Brand
Brand
Fujifilm
Focal Length
Focal Length
60mm
Weight
Weight
330 g
Colors
Colors
Black
Film Type
Film Type
Instax Mini Film
Other Key Features
Other Key Features
Simple and efficient auto exposure, selfie mode and mirror
Best For
Best For
Travel photographers and those who want a simple point-and-shoot camera

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 is one of the best instant cameras for those who like straightforward functions. This camera is incredibly easy to operate, as everything is automatic.

It doesn’t come with any controls of any kind. You just load the film pack, point, and shoot. Everything else is already set.

The only setting you can manipulate is the selfie mode. This feature is activated by pulling out the lens a little. And to help you frame the photo, the camera comes with a tiny mirror.

In terms of design, this camera is more stylish than our top choice (the Instax Mini 12). Plus, it is more comfortable to hold, thanks to its textured material.

It is yet another camera that uses Instax Mini film (which is cheaper than Polaroid film). And after shooting, it only takes 90 seconds to develop. Thanks to its simplicity, this Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 is perfect for kids, families, and partygoers.

 

Instant Camera Buyer’s Guide (FAQs)

We hope our answers to these top questions about instant cameras will help you find the right camera.

What Is the Best Instant Camera for My Money?

The cheapest instant camera on our list is the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12. And because of its up-to-date features, it’s well worth your consideration. But its film can be expensive to buy.

Kodak claims their Mini Shot 3 is more cost-effective over time, thanks to their cheaper paper. So this is worth considering if you plan on using your instant camera a lot.

Man holding a Polaroid instant camera and print
The Polaroid Go instant camera in action

What Features Should I Look for When Buying an Instant Camera?

You will want to look for features that match your shooting style the most. A flash is handy in multiple situations and photographic genres.

If you plan to take pictures of yourself with your friends, ensure your instant camera has a selfie mode. Some cameras on this list even have a mirror to help you frame yourself as best as possible.

Another important factor to consider is the camera’s usability. If you plan on buying a camera for the whole family, you will want one with fully automatic features. This allows you to simply point and shoot.

What Is the Difference Between an Instant Camera and a Digital Camera?

An instant camera will print an image as soon as you have taken a photo. Some new instant cameras let you see the photo before you print. But instant cameras will always give you a physical copy of your photo.

People find this instant photography more special as it produces a one-of-a-kind photo that cannot be recreated. But some newer instant cameras with internal memory let you print your picture more than once.

Digital cameras will not have a printing function. They will save your photos to a memory card, which you can access on a computer to edit and prepare for printing.

 

Conclusion: The Best Instant Camera

There are many options available to choose from as the best instant camera. But you should know that the image quality of the prints and features are not always the same. Some instant cameras are great for teenagers looking to snap some fun photos. Others are more suitable for instant photography fanatics.

Our top choice is the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12. It has easy-to-operate features for photography and is fun for the whole family! But more serious photographers who want more manual options may want to look at the Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 or the InstantFlex TL70 2.0.

Our Top 3 Choices for The Best Instant Camera
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Fujifilm Instax Mini 12
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
Polaroid Go
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1
Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1