Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 Review


What’s old is new again. In the age of instant cameras, Instagram and insta-everything, gone are the days where the mainstream consumer would have to go to a photo shop to get their film developed to see their moments captured. But the idea of developing your film, especially instantly, hasn’t gone away.

Originally inspired from the Polaroid cameras of old that were at their peak and subsequently their decline from over 20 years ago with the introduction of the digital camera. They’re the inspiration for the endless camera and social photo sharing apps that you see in app stores today.

It seems that the novelty of having photos instantly printed before your eyes is still alive and well. But with that novelty comes constraints that we’ve forgotten since embracing the capable cameras we all have installed on our smartphones.

Fuji Film Instax 8

Why the Instax Mini 8 in the first place?

Fuji Film Instax 8 2

The Mini 8 will polarize you. You may dislike it because of its limited capability of well, just taking instant photos, its 10 photo per cartridge limit or even just the quality – or simply because it isn’t a smartphone. Or you can embrace it and revel in the novelty of instant photos that aren’t just a file sitting in your phone or computer. You can actually touch your photos (who would of thought that, right?) and put it on your desk or in a photo frame as a collage.

Whatever side of the fence you fall on. There seems to be a place for instant photography, which hankers to a time before “selfies” entered the mainstream consciousness.


Fuji Film Instax 8 3Fuji Film Instax 8 6

The version that was sent to me was a very kid-friendly purple. No doubt you’ll get questions about what it is because the design is bulbous almost excluding a bubbly character that screams to be played with and used for moments that are captured in an instant. It comes with a price running at $80 retail. But the costs can add up over time in the recurring photo cartridge purchases afterwards.

The colour selection is also great too. Pictured is their “Grape flavoured” Mini 8, but you can also find them in baby blue, pink, raspberry and black.

Photo Quality and Experience 

Fuji Film Instax 8 4

As a simple point and shoot camera, there isn’t much to learn about the Mini 8. You just point and shoot and out comes the photo. It’s marvelous as you’ll figure it out in no time flat.

Some of the first things you’ll notice in the photo cartridge is that each comes with only 10 shots. That’s right. Ten opportunities to capture moments. Not limited to the amount of storage on your smartphone, which can store thousands if not tens of thousands photos depending on the onboard storage of your phone.

Rather than being passive behind your smartphone and constantly taking photos, some will appreciate the 10 photo limitation to actually “be in the moment” as the design doesn’t encourage the convenience that you can pull it out of your pocket. After you’ve taken your all your photos, that’s it. They’re captured and everyone can enjoy them in the present moment or at another time in the future to relive those moments. You definitely can’t delete these photos or retouch them.

Running at $11 retail per cartridge, the photo quality will not rival your smartphone and definitely not a high end DSLR camera as you can see above and below.

The Bottom Line

Fuji Film Instax 8 5

The beauty of the product is its laser focused use case – providing instant photos on the fly. Whether its spontaneously at a party, wedding or some other social function. You’ll get great photos that capture the moment, they won’t be the perfect photo, but a physical memento of that moment captured, flaws and all.

If and when you do buy the Mini 8, will you Instagram your Mini 8 photos?

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 Is Perfect for:

– Events such as weddings, parties or those involved with the events industry. The novelty of instant film never wears off

– Couples or parents capturing random / candid moments

– Children who are taking a liking to photography

– Students.. because student life.

Key things to be aware of:

– The instant film can be pricey going at $11 for 10 photos per cartridge

– It’s cute as a button, so everyone from kids to grandparents will gravitate towards it, but isn’t as portable as a smartphone, so having a backpack or a fanny pack to toss it in might be a good idea.

– You can’t turn off the flash

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Reviewed Item
Fujifilm Instax Mini 8
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Will obsesses over the latest and greatest in gadgets, startups, does CrossFit and writes about technology, growth marketing, programming and personal development. He curates the Startup Digest in Toronto and is a coffee enthusiast.

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