Instant photography is not dead (yet)

Several days ago, I wrote about the death of the Polaroid instant camera, and the attempts to bring the iconic instant camera back from the dead.

Turns out that may not be necessary for everyone, as Fujifilm jumped into the void left behind by Polaroid with their new Instax 200 instant camera.

The concept is very much like the Land cameras sold by Polaroid; you insert a film cartridge, make a photo, and a minute later you have a colorful print of whatever you snapped.

The camera itself is a pleasantly low $49.95, but film cartridges will run you $21.95 for a twin pack of 10 prints. For comparison – Polaroid cartridges cost about 50 cents more for the same number of sheets.

The camera itself has received a favorable review from the folks at B&H Photo, which is where you’ll also find it in stock, if you want to continue your tradition of instant prints. Of course, real Polaroid lovers will probably never settle for anything other than the real thing!

Naturally, technology will eventually replace the chemical process used in these instant cameras, and one the first cameras using a new digital instant print system dubbed “Zink” recently appeared on Japenese store shelves.

That same technology also powers a pocket digital printer made by Polaroid as well as their own version of a digital camera with an integrated printer.

Bringing Polaroid back from the dead

February 18th 2008 was a sad day for photography fans all around the world.

It is the day the Polaroid corporation announced the closure of their three instant film production lines. By December, all production came to a halt, and 450 people were without a job.

Polaroid produced just enough instant film cartridges to supply fans with their favorite product until Q1 of 2009 and some fanatics stocked up on as many packs as they could.

Initiatives started all around the world to help keep the product alive, and one group of people in The Netherlands has actually managed to purchase all the manufacturing equipment that made up the Dutch Polaroid plant. The group has even signed a 10 year lease for the original buildings.

Their plan is to use the production line to develop new integral film for the Polaroid camera lineup, and once again allow photographers all around the world to get instant photos from their camera with that familiar clickbzzzztclick noise.