You’ve got some great ideas for photos you could take with your Polaroid camera, but Fujifilm is the only film available. Can you use the Fujifilm instant camera film in your Polaroid camera?
Fujifilm’s Instax film cannot be used in a Polaroid camera. The only exception is Fujifilm Instax Mini, which can be used in a Polaroid 300 camera. Also, only some Polaroid film is compatible even with all Polaroid cameras; the same is true for Fujifilm.
Selecting a suitable film for you and your camera can take time and effort. Whether you have some experience or are just starting, keep reading to understand more about what film is right for you.
Why Most Fujifilm Film Won’t Work with a Polaroid Camera
Besides film for the Polaroid 300, no Fujifilm film will work in a Polaroid camera, and vice-versa. There are two main reasons for this:
1. The Way Each Type of Camera Works
Each type of camera works differently, based on technology developed by different companies. As a result, the chemicals used in the development process for Polaroid and Fujifilm are different.
2. The Size of the Film
Each manufacturer has created their film in slightly different sizes, specific to their design. This means the film wouldn’t fit in the camera correctly even if the development chemicals were identical.
Why Can Fujifilm Instax Mini Film Be Used in a Polaroid 300 Camera?
Polaroid used to produce all the instant film for its cameras, but it no longer does so. Instead, it licenses its brand name to other manufacturers, and the Polaroid 300 camera is a Fuji Instax camera that has been branded with the Polaroid name.
The film used in this camera is also branded with the Polaroid name and is essentially the same as the Fujifilm Instax mini film. This is why this type of film can be used in a Polaroid 300 – it’s the same thing!
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Which Film Do I Use with Polaroid Cameras?
If you have a Polaroid camera, you should use Polaroid film. This is the only film specifically made to work for your camera. The type of Polaroid film you use will depend on the range of Polaroid cameras your camera belongs to.
There are four main ranges of Polaroid cameras, each coming with its own set of film specific to the camera model:
- Polaroid 600
- Polaroid Go
- Polaroid SX-70
The I-Type film is only for the newest Polaroid cameras, called i-Type. It’s similar to 600 films but doesn’t have a battery in the film cartridge.
This means that 600 films can be used in an i-Type camera, but the i-Type film won’t work in an old, classic Polaroid camera which requires the film to have a battery.
Polaroid 600 Film
600 film is the most common type of Polaroid film and usually comes in its traditional blue packaging. It is used in the Polaroid 600 range – the most popular range of Polaroid cameras – and, as mentioned above, also works in i-Type cameras.
Polaroid Go Film
Polaroid Go film is exclusive to the Go range of cameras.
Despite being the same type of film as the i-Type, the Polaroid Go is the most miniature instant camera on the market, so it needs a specific size of film to work correctly.
Polaroid SX-70 Film
SX-70 film is again exclusive to the range because the camera operates slightly differently.
It is much less sensitive to light, meaning it needs approximately four times the amount of light to achieve the same clarity as the Polaroid 600 range.
Which Film Do I Use with Fujifilm Instax Cameras?
A similar approach applies to Fujifilm Instax cameras – you should use Fujifilm Instax film. As you might expect, Fujifilm Instax also has many different ranges of cameras, and these all use film specific to the range. Fujifilm has three ranges of film to consider:
- Instax Mini
- Instax Square
- Instax Wide
Each range has a specific type of film. For example, if you have an Instax Mini camera, you’ll need Instax Mini film to use it.
Unlike Polaroid, there aren’t any exceptions to the film being specific for the range, although you can also use Instax Film in the cameras made by the ‘Lomography brand.
How To Select the Right Film for Your Camera
When choosing the film for your camera, it’s best to learn what will work using online resources. However, it’s an easy mistake to assume that all resources are correct, as many show out-of-date information.
The best approach is to refer directly to the manufacturer’s website.
This is the most reliable source of up-to-date information about what film is compatible with your camera and will consider any updates or changes that might impact your selection.
When you have narrowed down the list of films compatible with your camera, you can then decide what qualities the different types have if there is more than one available type of film.
Some may provide different photo styles so that you can tailor your selection to your artistic needs.
Polaroid and Fujifilm are well-known, reputable brands, which makes it challenging to know the best one for you. Both brands offer instant camera options that produce high-quality images. However, there are some critical differences between them:
|Development Time||1-2 minutes||15-30 minutes|
|Performance Temperature||Any temperature||60-80 degrees F|
|Storage Temperature||Room temperature||40-65 degrees F|
|Benefits||Better dynamic range and sharper output||Classic ‘Polaroid’ look|
With this in mind, the choice mostly comes down to your artistic preference. For those who value that vintage, moody Polaroid look, there’s only one way to go.
Otherwise, Fujifilm’s Instax range provides sharper pictures and a broader range of performance.
Instant cameras are a great way to capture unique memories in a tangible and instantly gratifying way.
Whatever camera you have, if you stick within your range, it’s hard to go wrong, and you’ll be well on your way to capturing that perfect shot.
Mark PlummerMark Plummer is a co-founder and blogger on Instant Cameras. Together with his wife, Susana, and daughter Scarlett he loves capturing special family moments with his Instax Mini 11. He is passionate about sharing knowledge and tips on Instax and Polaroid cameras through the Instant Camera Blog.
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