Fujifilm’s latest instant camera, the Instax Mini EVO, doesn’t look how you might expect. Housed in a vintage analog-style build and loaded with a wide variety of features, the hybrid instant camera is a little different to the other models in the Instax Mini line. Watch the video above or read on below for our Instax Mini EVO review.

Build

The Instax Mini EVO hybrid instant camera
The Instax Mini EVO hybrid instant camera

Measuring 3.4 x 4.8 x 1.4 inches and encased in a silver and faux-leather exterior, the Instax Mini EVO looks and feels like a retro analog film camera. Quite a departure from the pastel colors, rounded curves, and boxy builds of Instax Mini cameras past.  However, unlike the heavy film cameras of old, the Mini EVO weighs just 10.1 oz, making it comfortable to carry anywhere.

One of our favorite features of the new camera is the lever on the right side of the camera, reminiscent of the shutter button on vintage film cameras. On the Mini EVO, you use it to print your shot, once you’re ready to do so. A 3.0-inch TFT color LCD screen on the back lets you preview your photos.

The lever is not the only vintage feature adapted for new functionality. A dial on top of the camera that might have once rewound the film inside now changes the film effect. Twisting a dial on the lens adjusts the lens effect, rather than the focus.

Speaking of which, the Mini EVO uses a 28mm lens; a versatile focal length that’s wide without being too wide. The f/2 aperture also enables a dynamic performance, but more on that below.

The camera is equipped with a 1/5-inch CMOS sensor, built-in flash (with a shooting range of 19.7 inches – 4.9 feet), dual shutter buttons (on top and on front), and a selfie mirror above the lens.  There’s also a micro-USB charging port and a microSD/microSDHC card slot for added storage.  The camera can hold 45 images in internal memory, or approximately 850 images per gigabyte when using a microSD card.

Performance

The Instax Mini EVO offers 10 distinct lens effects and film effects respectively. This means there are literally 100 different visual styles to experiment with. Lens effects such as Vignette, Light Leak, Mirror, and Double Exposure were incredibly fun to play with, especially when combined with film effects such as Retro, Sepia, Monochrome, and Vivid.

The camera’s versatile specifications and automatic ISO, shutter speed, and flash meant we were able to use the camera in a multitude of settings with no difficulty. However, the fun didn’t stop with the camera. One of the Mini EVO’s coolest features is that you can connect it to your smartphone via Bluetooth.

Using the companion Instax Mini EVO app, you can both print pictures that were taken on your phone via the camera, and send photos captured on the camera to your phone. If you enjoy sharing your photos on the ‘Gram as much as we do, you’ll adore this feature.

Despite the advanced features supported by the Mini EVO, it’s not a hard camera to operate. In fact, the clean interface, simple button layout, and user-friendly app make the Mini EVO decidedly easy to use, even if you don’t have a lot of experience with cameras.

The Verdict

Instax have successfully blended past and present technologies to produce a stylish, highly capable camera that’s a genuine pleasure to use. If you’re an instant camera afficionado, you’ll love using the advanced controls to get more creative. However, the user-friendly design of the camera means anyone can have fun using it.

Easy to use and affordably priced at just $199, it’s already clear the Instax Mini EVO will be an instant hit.

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