The Fujifilm Instax line has rapidly increased in popularity, owing to its impressive lenses and colorful designs. It is also lightweight and compact, so traveling with it won’t be a problem.
If you’re looking forward to owning an instant camera, then you’re probably considering the popular Instax 9 or the more recent Instax 11. While these two may seem identical, there are several differences between these models.
In this article, we will discuss the difference between the Instax 11 and Instax 9 cameras. We will talk about all the major features that set one model from the other, with the goal of helping you find the best Instax for you.
Preset Exposure vs. Automatic Exposure
One of the biggest changes between the Instax 9 and the Instax 11 is the latter’s automatic exposure feature.
The Instax Mini 9 camera is famously known to have 5 preset exposure settings that help you capture the best photos. You can easily switch between each preset with the use of a convenient dial, so you can do it even when you’re in a hurry.
But let’s face it - there are times when we simply forget to switch between presets. This usually happens when you want to take a quick snap, but forgot the fact that you changed to a preset that’s different from your favorite one. And that can be such a waste of film!
With the Instax Mini 11 camera, committing this mistake is all part of the past. Fujifilm made this model more intuitive than its predecessor because the system automatically adjusts the flash output and shutter speed according to what the situation requires. This relies mainly on the amount of light present in the given situation.
The automatic exposure feature of the Instax Mini 11 certainly makes it more convenient. If you’re a new user of instant cameras, this model makes everything easier for you. But if you prefer the more artistic preset exposure settings, the Instax 9 is perfect for you.
This feature actually goes hand-in-hand with the Instax 11’s automatic exposure feature, but the difference is also worth mentioning.
The older Instax 9 is built with a fixed shutter speed at 1/60 of a second, while the newer Instax 11 has a wide range of shutter speeds to choose from. The range is between ½ to 1/250 of a second.
While it is the system that chooses which shutter speed is to be used for each shot, the fact that it has so many speeds to choose from greatly improves the picture quality. This also means that even if you’re shooting in low-light areas, you’re sure to take vibrant and well-lit shots. Even dark backgrounds will be illuminated with the appropriate shutter speed.
Another notable innovation that came with the Instax 11 is making selfies easier. The Instax Mini 11 now has an integrated selfie mode, which its predecessor did not have.
To activate the instant camera’s selfie mode, you simply have to pop out the front part of the lens barrel and click it into place. This allows you to take impressive selfies, as long as you stand within 30 to 50 centimeters away from the lens. And once you’re done, you can simply pop the lens back to its original position.
On the other hand, the Instax 9 requires you to use the snap-on selfie lens attachment before you can take selfies. The downside to this design is how time-consuming it is. And if you’re taking selfies with the added pressure of time, the whole process can be too stressful.
Plus, since it’s completely separate from the camera itself, it’s possible to leave it behind when you’re in such a hurry.
At first glance, you will think that the Instax 11 is no different from the Instax 9 - design-wise, at least. But if you try to look at them closely, you’ll realize that the Instax 11 is actually slightly taller yet more compact around the sides with more rounded edges. It is also lighter than the Instax 9 by a few grams. And if we look at the back, the Instax 11 has more texture on one side.
If you consider all of these features together, Instax 11 not only looks more modern but also offers a better grip than its predecessor. This makes it easier on the hands, which reduces the risk of accidentally dropping it.
Both the Instax 9 and Instax 11 comes with a convenient carrying strap. The Instax 11, on the other hand, comes with two interchangeable shutter button accessories. While they can add pizzazz to your instant camera, it can also be helpful when you’re trying to shoot in low-light environments - especially the one that glows in the dark.
This new set of shutter button accessories only add to the fact that it’s easier to take photos with the Instax 11.
Another notable difference between these two Instax models is its range of colors.
The Instax 9 line is known for providing us with bright and colorful instant cameras that are sure to make life more fun. In contrast, the Instax 11 offers more muted pastel colors that are equally as beautiful.
While we do not have a particular preference when it comes to which color is best, we believe the Instax 11 provides us with more modern vibes than its predecessor. The Instax 9, on the other hand, delivers more nostalgic vibes.
Fujifilm is a renowned brand in the world of photography. There’s no doubt that each of its cameras offers excellent picture quality, but there’s also no denying that innovation improves what a previous model offers. The same is true for the Instax 9 and Instax 11 cameras.
With a wider selection for shutter speeds coupled with a smart system that allows automatic exposure, there’s no doubt that the Instax 11 delivers improved picture quality with brighter and sharper images. Even if you’re trying to take a picture at night, you can expect the automatic exposure feature to improve how the photo will turn out.
But this doesn’t mean that the Instax 11 is already better. Some photographers still prefer the manual exposure option, and in that case, the Instax 9 would be the best instant camera for them.