There’s something sweet about the ability to take a photo and have an actual physical image in your hands moments later. This is the magic of the Instax range and the new Mini 11 is a simple and easy-to-use camera that boasts some decent image quality at an affordable price. It sets you back R1399 but like all models, the real cost may come from purchasing the Instant Film. With that said, there’s a lot more going on with the Instax Mini 11 than meets the eye. For example, it boasts automatic exposure levels that give photos more light compared to some other models on the market. There’s also the great range of colours.
Instax Mini 11 Tech Specs
Film type: Fujifilm Instax Mini instant film
Closest focusing: 0.5m (0.3m in selfie mode)
Shutter speeds: 1/2sec – 1/250sec
Film developing time: 90 secs
Print size: 54×86mm (2.1 in × 3.4 in)
Printed image size: 62x46mm (1.8 in × 2.4 in)
Prints per film pack: 10
Power: 2x AA batteries
Weight: 293g (without batteries, strap, and film)
Available colours: Blush Pink, Sky Blue, Charcoal Gray, Ice White, and Lilac Purple
The Instax Mini 11 comes in a range of colours including white, pink, grey, lilac, and blue. No doubt Fujifilm are trying to target youth and their love for vibrant tech here. The blue is well, quite blue and not a colour I would choose. Regardless, the overall range means there’s a shade out there for you. The design of the Instax Mini 11 screams “classic bulky camera”. The device is round with grooves here and there for holding support and to run wires up the sides. It is bulky and feels quite sturdy in your hands.
It weighs about 300 grams and is 4.7-inches tall by 4.2-inches wide and 2.7-inches thick. It takes two AA batteries and the mainstream Fujifilm Instant Film packs of 10. There’s also a nifty little number to show how many shots you still have left in the film pack. It comes in handy. One strange addition to the Instax Mini 11 is these new knobs that can clip onto the shutter button. I had two in my box and they slide into the hole on the button. I get the product is aimed at a specific demographic but the whole idea of sticking these glitter knobs on the camera felt strange. Especially given that the button presses just fine in every single circumstance.
General use of the Instax Mini 11 is quite simple. Batteries go in the side and the back opens up where you can slide in the film. On the front, there’s the optical viewfinder which feeds the image to the smaller lens on the top right-hand side. There are two buttons on the camera; one to take photos and one to extend the lens which turns on the device. You can then turn it off by pushing the lens back in after it pops out. There’s also a mirror on the front to see what you are shooting when you take a selfie.
Operating the device is quite easy. I turned it on with the pop-out button, aimed the camera, looked into the small lens window and pressed the button. The Instax Mini 11 has a flash that automatically triggers whenever you take a photo. You can also take photos both in portrait and landscape depending on your preference. The lense on the Instax Mini 11 is quite great. It is a wide-angle but restricted to an f/12.7 aperture. This means the flash is a must for all shots and it automatically went off whenever I pressed the button.
This is a double-edged sword. For starters, the flash means you’ll never have to worry about the scenes being too dark. However, on the other hand, some shots were ruined by the overexposure caused by the camera’s bright flash. This was an issue in most bright scenes. Taking a photo of my family resulted in them looking washed out and white. Taking a photo in the sun washed out the colours in the image. This is mainly due to the camera lens’ ISO of 800.
It takes a while to get used to the things I had to look out for when shooting with the Instax Mini 11. However, after a while, I knew to always step back and shoot, and try not to take photos in crazy bright areas. After that, it was a great camera to use. The image quality s also pretty decent but there’s nothing fantastic about it. If you’ve seen one Instax Mini photo, you have seen them all. It may just take a few wasted prints before you get the hang of how this camera deals with its lighting and flash.
The Instax Mini 11 is simple and to the point. There’s nothing magical about its feature set and its lens take okay photos. If you are looking at getting into the market then this is a great place to start. It costs R1,399 and can take some fantastic photos when the situation is right. There’s honestly nothing better than snapping and printing it out right away. It makes it fun and personal. Something Instax has hit on the head countless times.