Updated: Jan 16
I recently picked up the Lomo Instant Wide Camera by Lomography; it's unique build piqued my interest, not to mention it also uses Instax Wide film. Instax Wide film is considerably cheaper and comes with two more pieces of film compared to Polaroids 600 film or i-type film. The Lomo Instant Wide camera came with a 90 mm (35 mm equivalent) & ultra-wide + close-up lens attachments and a splitzer to split exposures on images for those venturing to be creative. This camera also came with colored flash filters to help tone images and a separate viewfinder for the other lens attachments. However, the viewfinder is its greatest weakness as it sits on the camera's right side. This makes framing up images rather challenging; they could have easily put this viewfinder dead center.
The Lomo Instant Wide is surprisingly lightweight compared to its physical size. This camera is an eye-catcher for sure, too, so be prepared for people to stop you and ask what type of camera it is. This camera takes four AA batteries (I recommend buying rechargeable batteries) and is very easy to operate if you are an experienced photographer. One key feature of this camera is its unlimited exposure, which is excellent for abstract photography. Exposure compensation is as easy as pushing a button up and down and is comfortably located on the back of the camera. The flash is effortless to turn on and off; just turn the switch. On the front of the camera, it has a spot to plug in your free-standing large bulb flash for those wanting to use this in a studio setting. The most advanced feature of this camera, however, is its lens cap. This cap also acts as a shutter release, that's right, a shutter release. This is great if you have your camera set up and you want to be in the image. The biggest downfall, though, is if the camera is on, you can easily waste film by accidentally pressing it, putting it back on the lens or having it in your pocket. I would prefer just having a plain lens cap and separate shutter release for this reason. I actually leave it completely off and do not take it with me for this reason.
I feel this camera is geared toward more experienced photographers, so if you are an experienced photographer and you are looking for a good instant camera, then this is the camera for you. If you are new to instant photography, or photography in general, then this is going to take some practice, not to mention some film.
In my personal experience, this camera takes some stunning images with beautiful vintage tones we all love and enjoy. The vignette around the photos is not too overpowering, either. I do prefer shooting the black and white Instax Wide film, but the color wide Instax film is very nice as well; I particularly love how the color red shows up. One feature I would have loved to see worked on better, besides the placement of the viewfinder and the shutter release that doesn't need to be a lens cap, is having a better placement for a camera strap. Using the two spots that do fit a tethered buckle strap leaves the camera hanging vertically around your neck, not only is it uncomfortable, but it makes it hard to quickly raise your camera to take a photo.
All in all, I do love this camera, and I would highly recommend it. It does come with some downfalls, but they can easily be overcome. I would give this camera an easy 7/10 rating, and it's a solid camera worth adding to your collection and a really good camera to grab and have some fun with. Below are some images I captured using this camera, and you can check out the video of me shooting these shots below.
My YouTube Videos on the Lomo Instant Wide Camera
Photos Taken with the Lomo Instant Wide Camera