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The Best Instant Camera - 2021

Last updated on June 10, 2021

We looked at the top 14 Instant Cameras and dug through the reviews from 117 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Instant Cameras.

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Our Picks For The Top Instant Cameras

Show Contents
Our Take
  Best Overall

Magicfun Instant Print Instant Camera

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Magicfun

Instant Print Instant Camera

Overall Take

Lots of ExtrasIn addition to taking and printing pictures, this instant camera also has a video function.

  Great for Kids

Maidream Mini Instant Camera

Maidream

Mini Instant Camera

Overall Take

Cute and CompactThis instant camera is ideal for children ages 3 to 12.

  Classic Design

Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Camera

Fujifilm

Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Camera

Overall Take

Fun CameraPreset modes make this instant camera easy to set up the ideal shooting conditions for various types of shots.

  We Also Like

Dragon Touch InstantFun Zero Ink Kids Instant Camera

Dragon Touch

InstantFun Zero Ink Kids Instant Camera

Overall Take

Fun ColorsInstill a love for photography in your child by gifting them with this instant camera.

  Complete Kit

Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera Bundle

Fujifilm

Mini 9 Instant Camera Bundle

Overall Take

Multiple Color OptionsThis fun instant camera comes in five vibrant colors, including lime green, flamingo pink, smoky white, light blue and cobalt blue.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, Simplemost analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
21

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the instant cameras available to purchase.
14

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

117

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources.

131,780

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

The Best Overall

Magicfun Instant Print Instant Camera

Our Expert Score

9.3

Our Take

Introduce children to the art of photography with this instant camera. The camera is easy to operate with six filters and four scenes to choose from. The set even includes a host of extras, such as a memory card, cartoon stickers and a set of colored pencils.


Our Instant Camera Buying Guide

Instant film cameras have made a comeback in recent years, as a new generation has discovered how fun they are. In a digital-driven world, consumers find it fun to have an instant print of whatever shot they’ve just captured.

These cameras are perfect for you if you enjoy the “instant gratification of a print,” says Jay Soriano, a portrait photographer based in Las Vegas.

“Overall, they’re fun and they’re great gifts,” Soriano says. “It can also be a fashion statement with the accessories.”

Today’s instant film cameras have come a long way from those sold in the mid- to late 1900s, packing features built for a tech-driven market.

As you start shopping for an instant film camera, it’s important to keep those more modern features in mind. You’ve probably gotten used to taking photos using a smartphone camera, which is a completely different experience than capturing a shot using a viewfinder. If you wear glasses, you’ll also need to pay attention to the size of the viewfinders. Some of them are so small, it can be tough to get your eye close enough to see the image.

You’re probably also used to taking selfies. There are cameras that build in selfie mirrors to make this easier, but it’s not like seeing your image on a smartphone screen. If you want to take group pictures, you’ll also need to look for an instant camera that has a tripod mount and timer. Without the timer, someone will always have to be near the camera to press the shutter button.

There’s a big difference in the type of camera a pro shooter needs compared to someone who just wants to have fun. Instant cameras build in automatic features, similar to what your smartphone has. Serious photography enthusiasts will want to be able to override these automatic features for manual control, but not all instant cameras have that capability.

Perhaps the most important factor, though, is the quality of the print you’ll receive. This can be subjective, but look for cameras with prints that are as true to life as possible. Instant cameras that both print pictures and allow a microSD card to save images digitally can be especially useful.

Simplemost Fun Fact

Instant prints kicked off in 1948 with the release of the Polaroid Land Model 95 camera, invented by scientist Edwin Land. While on vacation, Land was inspired by his daughter, who asked why she couldn’t see the photo immediately. But long before Land came up with his idea, Samuel Shlafrock invented a camera that came with a portable darkroom. His invention never quite caught on, though, because it lacked the convenience of Land’s model. Instead of a built-in darkroom, Land’s creation used self-developing film.

The Instant Camera Tips and Advice

  • Most of these newer instant cameras are built for ease of use. That means you’ll have a variety of settings options. If you’re creative, you’ll love a model that lets you switch up the type of photos you take with just the press of a button. Look for a built-in mirror for taking selfies and six different easy-to-use portrait settings. With some instant cameras, it’s important to point out that there is a delay between pressing the trigger and capturing the shot. This type of camera isn’t the best camera for action shots.
  • The Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera also has a variety of exposure options, including one called “Hi-Key,” which softens the image when you print it.
  • Print quality is something to consider, as well. Look for an instant camera that offers wider shots than you would typically see with an instant film camera, as this allows you to squeeze more into each picture. These models also tend to offer impressive color saturation and separation. Cameras with 10-megapixel images are colorful and vibrant. The Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera can be prone to black specks in overexposed areas of your image.
  • Look for prints that resist smudges, water damage and tears. You may even want to consider a model that has a black and white feature.
  • Chances are, you won’t always be shooting in the same type of lighting. The right camera compensates for that, giving you just the amount of exposure you need for your current environment. With the Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera, you get separate settings for shooting in sunny or cloudy outdoor environments, as well as indoors. In bright sun, though, you may find your shots are overexposed. If you routinely shoot in low-light conditions, you’ll want to steer toward a camera with a wider aperture.
  • Instant film cameras have reemerged in a digital era, which means some consumers are going to want digital features, too. The Dragon Touch InstantFun Zero Ink Kids Instant Camera both prints out a photo and saves a digital copy. You can then take the SD card and insert it into a card reader on your computer to upload it to all your favorite social media sites.
  • If you find you’re always behind the camera and never in any pictures, consider a camera with both a timer and a tripod socket. You can just set your camera up, hop into the frame and say, “Cheese.” Keep in mind someone will have to be behind the camera since there’s no timer.
  • Flash can be an issue with instant cameras. Some instant cameras automatically adjust to fit the current lighting needs. The Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera’s flash always goes off, which can be a problem if you prefer to take advantage of natural lighting.
  • Having rechargeable batteries can be very useful if you want to save money. The average rechargeable camera takes about 100 shots before needing to recharge again. The Dragon Touch InstantFun Zero Ink Kids Instant Camera has a rechargeable battery. The Fujifilm Mini 9 Instant Camera runs on AA batteries.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a former information technology professional who spent most of her career working with computers and printers. Now a novelist and professional writer, her writings on electronics have been published on top tech sites. When she isn't writing about technology, she's often checking out the latest news on the upcoming iPhone release.