Instax Mini 8 Review - Instant Camera

Instax Mini 8 Review

April 6, 2014

I LOVE instant cameras. I mean the instant gratification that you get from taking a photo and then having it in your hands is something that you miss with all the modern iPhone and digital photos that we take on a daily basis!

I treated myself to the Instax Mini 8 - got it from my local Staples for $89.99 and it came with enough film for 20 business card sized photos. Additional film comes in 2x10 packs and locally I paid $19.99 for the 20 photos - so that works out to $1.00 per shot. A little pricey, but heck - they are pretty cute, and it is fun to snap and watch the development process. Compared to using my Canon Selphy CP900 at approximately 40 cents per 4x6 shot - it is reasonable enough.

The instructions included were pretty vague, and hard to follow, but had the film in the camera and was snapping shots in a few minutes. Actually burned through the first roll of film in minutes. Here are some things I noted:

Size and Weight: The camera is compact but heavier then you would think (307g) - it comes with a wrist strap, so I would recommend that you use it.

Taking Photos: Sounds odd, but if you have long eyelashes (I do) the viewfinder is not the simplest to look through, had to blink a couple times so that I could see. Also the flash is so-so (the camera costs $69.99 if you discount the film it comes with - so really in perspective it is still pretty good), but takes some decent shots. You have to be quite close to your subject to get good colour/focus as there is no autofocus (again - the camera is $70... so what do you expect). 

Of course we tried some selfies, the BF eating lunch and ruining the nice smiley photo I asked for, some outdoor and indoor shots as well!

Of course we tried some selfies, the BF eating lunch and ruining the nice smiley photo I asked for, some outdoor and indoor shots as well!

Photo Quality: Out of the 20 photos that I took, I only tossed 3 due to poor development or due to attempts to use the other lighting options. So to me - that is decent.

The camera comes with a few lighting options - Indoors, Night (F12.7), Cloudy, Shade (F16), Sunny, Slightly cloudy (F22),  Sunny and bright (F32) and a high key mode for high levels of brightness. I wasn't successful with the high key setting, but will play some more.

Rotating the dial gives you 5 lighting options.

Rotating the dial gives you 5 lighting options.

Summary: Love it. Totally fun to pack in your bag. Great for crafting/journalling as well. Really like the instant gratification of being able to have the photo immediately, and still marvel at watching the film develop. Some additional uses that I thought of:

  • organizing boxes - take a photo of the contents and place on the outside for reference
  • adding cute notes to partner/kids lunches with photos of you etc...
  • use as clues for a scavenger hunt - each photo leads you to the next clue

Check out this great Pinterest page for more info / ideas - for more great ideas!

Recent Posts by Persnickety Mama


In order to comment on, you'll need to be logged in. You'll be given the option to log in or create an account when you publish your comment. If you do not log in or create an account, your comment will not be displayed.