Fujifilm has introduced a new quick camera to its Instax Mini family, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12. Newly updated from the Instax Mini 11, our recommended instant camera, the Instax Mini 12, will be on sale in the middle of March for $79.95.
The Instax Mini 11 and Instax Mini 12 are virtually indistinguishable from one another, save for a few small improvements to features and aesthetics.
Yet, the most obvious modification is to the structure of the lens. Instead of pressing a button, you can rotate the lens to switch to Close-Up Mode, much like on a regular point-and-shoot. I’ve only just started trying the camera but based on my first opinion, this makes zooming in fun and intuitive.
Also, the instant camera’s power may be toggled between “on” and “off” by merely twisting the lens. In the past, activating the camera necessitated clicking a button on the side, popping the lens out, and then pushing it back in.
That’s not very user-friendly, and I can see how that, combined with the Instax Mini 11’s lack of obvious “on” and “off” labels, could have made operating the camera a bit of a challenge for younger users.
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While I appreciate the simplified off process, I still find the Instax Mini 11’s on/off button the most convenient. As Close-Up mode is so close to the extremes of “on” and “off,” this is the case.
When trying to adjust the lens to Close-Up Mode, I inadvertently turned off the Instax Mini 12. Yet, perhaps things will become better after I’ve had more time to experiment with the camera and adapt to the shift.
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Some of Fujifilm’s improvements to the flash are also noteworthy. The moment cannot be turned off. However, Fujifilm claims that the updated automated flash control will improve image quality in both high- and low-light situations.
I’ll have to put it through its paces to see whether that assertion holds water, but I certainly hope so, as that was my only complaint with the prior iteration, which was otherwise excellent.
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