instax Mini 11 Camera Accessory Kit, Sky Blue
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It's because the auto exposure system can now vary the shutter speed between 1/2 and 1/250, so it should be able to capture the right amount of light in all shooting scenarios. This is a big step up from the Mini 9's fixed 1/60 shutter speed, and helps massively when shooting indoors. I also like the twisting barrel which makes it easier to power-up and enter close-up mode. On the downside though, you will still suffer from over-exposures under bright daylight conditions, but the upgrades are still worth spending the extra tenner over the previous Mini 11 if you mostly photograph people.
With all three side by side, from left to right, the Mini 9, 11 and 12, you can see how Fujifilm’s evolved the styling, and I have to say I really like the look of the latest model which moves away from the almost toy-like bubble appearance of the earlier ones without losing its cuteness. Which do you prefer? As for the lens, it’s the same as before: 60mm which on the Mini format delivers coverage equivalent to around 34mm, capturing a mild wide angle, that’s ideal for general use from portraits and selfies to buildings and landscapes. To show it in action, I’ve filmed the view through the Mini 12’s viewfinder where you can see the old SQ1 camera positioned in the middle. This is with the lens set to the normal distance, but here’s the actual photo taken with this framing, where you can see the subject is off to one side. This is due to the parallax effect at close range where the viewfinder and lens are not showing the same thing. The photo quality is unsurprisingly similar to the models before it, albeit with the benefit of better-exposed selfies and more accurately framed close-ups. These in turn should reduce wasted prints. Fujifilm INSTAX Mini 12 verdict As for exposure, the Mini 12 remains fully automatic, like the 11 before it. Both employ a fixed aperture and automatic shutter speeds between 1/250 and half a second.
Instant converts have a new favorite starter camera
But for anyone who still finds the Mini 12’s styling a little too frivolous, here’s the earlier Mini 40 on the left with its more serious looks, a little like a vintage film camera, albeit much the same as the Mini 11 inside. The INSTAX Mini 12 is the latest instant camera to use Fujifilm’s enormously popular INSTAX Mini film. Launched in March 2023 and available in five pastel colours, the Mini 12 produces small prints using a fully analogue process that eject straightaway and gradually develop before your eyes in roughly 90 seconds. There's no way to manually disable the flash, which fires automatically with every shot – whether it's really needed or not. To frame your shot, you can either use the simple optical viewfinder when you’re behind the camera, or a small mirror to the left of the lens when you’re shooting selfies. Again as before, the camera can focus between about half a meter to infinity, but twist the lens into selfie / close-up mode and the range adjusts to between 30 and 50cm.
As I twist the lens barrel to the selfie / close-up mode though, notice how the viewfinder changes, showing the subject now shifted to one side. I’ll now move the subject to recentre it in the viewfinder and take another shot. Now while the final print is still not perfectly centered, it’s an improvement over the previous version and allows you to be more accurate with your framing at close-range with fewer wasted prints. The off-center viewfinder can also make light flares an issue when shooting towards the sun. What might seem well-composed can actually have direct sunlight hitting the lens. At first glance this would appear no different to the Mini 11 before it, but in a useful upgrade, Fujifilm has now added parallax correction to the 12 where the viewfinder adjusts when you have it set to close-up mode. This allows you to more accurately frame subjects at close range and avoid them appearing off-centre. The fixed focus lens manages to keep the majority of portrait and middle distance shots looking crisp, while landscapes can appear softer and more dreamlike.The front grip is narrower, and there's now a ridged thumb grip on the rear for easier one-handed use. Beyond the lens barrel release, which also acts as a power on switch for the built-in flash, the only other button is the shutter release.
There's no way to disable the flash, no self timer, and no tripod thread on the bottom. This is about as simple as instant cameras get. And at the other end of the scale, the Mini 12 still over-exposes bright outdoor scenes. Here’s a couple of shots I took in Brighton on an overcast day where the sky is completely washed-out – and remember this is England in Winter. If it’s sunny, the subject can become washed-out too, so beware of using any INSTAX cameras for bright daytime photography.The Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 improves on the previous generation Instax Mini in meaningful ways, making instant photography more accessible than ever with a largely accurate auto exposure system and an adjustable lens that works for close-ups and selfies as well as portraits and landscapes.
Constant firing flash (automatic light adjustment), recycle time: 6.5 seconds or less (when using new batteries), effective flash range: 0.3 to 2.7 mIt's an issue we've seen in other instant cameras, though, so it's more of a learning curve for the photographer than a failing of the camera. Compare it to the previous Mini 11 seen here, where you’d push a large button to extend the lens and power up the camera, before then manually yanking out the lens further for selfies or close-ups. Overall the INSTAX Mini 12 becomes the best budget INSTAX to date, especially if you’re into selfies or portraits. The print quality may be essentially the same as previous models but by reducing the flash power and adjusting the viewfinder when set to close-up mode, the 12 minimises washed-out subjects and inaccurate framing. The twisting control comes from the earlier SQ1 seen here, and makes the Mini 12 easier to use than previous models.