Fujifilm’s Instax line of instant cameras have been dominating the instant photography market over the last few years. But for some, it’s the novelty of printing their smartphone snaps that appeales to them the most. While the Instax Mini instant cameras are great for casual fun snaps, for many people the camera quality doesn’t compare to that of the camera on their smartphone and in the end many people found they were using the camera just to print their smartphone camera images. Luckily, Fujifilm has a solution for that with the Fujifilm Instax Mini Link Printer — a handy device that prints any shot on your phone’s camera roll using real instant film.
This simple, battery-powered printer works with your smartphone to print your favourite snaps in a matter of seconds. Unlike competitors that typically use low-quality heat-sensitive thermal materials to print, the Mini Link opts for instant film. While instant film may be more expensive than its Zero INK (zink) counterparts, the chemical process of instant film allows for crisper detail and much truer colour.
Printing credit-card-sized, 1.8″ x 2.4″ images, the Instax Mini Link uses replaceable film cartridges, with each cartridge holding 10 sheets of instant film. The mini printer weighs just 250 grams and is small enough to slip into your handbag for a day out with friends and family. Available in a variety of colours, including Ash White, Dark Denim, or Dusty Pink, the trendy little gadget is a great accessory for anyone who loves to take photos on the go.
The printer is purely portable and works with most smartphones and tablets running Android and iOS, it won’t work with your desktop or laptop computer. The Instax Mini Link easily pairs with your smart device using Bluetooth and transferring images from your phone to the printer is super quick and easy using the free Instax Mini Link app.
The app is very straightforward to use and the printer is pretty much plug-and-play once you’ve downloaded the app. Simple Print mode and in-app filters allow you to convert a photo to monochrome, sepia, or automatically enhance it for a better-looking print. Printing is relatively speedy too, with prints taking about twenty seconds total to transfer and fully eject a film frame. You’ll have to wait a few minutes for the photo to fully develop once it’s come out of the printer, but that’s half the fun!
The app also offers Video Print mode which allows you to load videos from your smartphone and grab any frame from a video clip, up to three minutes in length, and print just like a photo. Before printing your snaps you can also opt to use a selection of virtual frames and stickers to pimp your photo and make it look extra cool.
The prints are framed by a white plastic border, just like a Polaroid and images have a glossy finish, which adds some extra apparent vibrance to colors and contrast to monochrome shots. As for the image quality and colour I was very impressed with the printing results from the Instax Mini Link. While zinc prints often have strange shifts in colour with images plagued by ugly little dots littered across the print, you don’t have that issue with the Instax Mini Link printer.
Obviously the results also greatly depend on your camera phone as well. If you use a good-quality smartphone camera with this printer you won’t be disappointed in the snaps it produces. I printed shots from the Huawei P20 Pro and got some lovely crisp prints with beautiful colour using the Instax Mini Link.
The rechargeable printer has an internal battery that can be charged via micro USB. Fujifilm claims you’ll get about 100 prints per charge so unless you’re a super user of note you won’t have to charge it that often.
The Instax Mini Link is a great little device for budding shutterbugs who want to print their smartphone snaps. While the small print size may not appeal to adults, parents will find that the printer is ideal for tweens and teens who love to scrapbook or display their prints in a creative way.
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