Polaroid Originals Cameras
in 2017, Impossible project as bought the Polaroid Co and created a new company called Polaroid Originals. They have rebranded all Impossible Project products and Polaroid products under this new brand name. Many believe this is the best thing happened to Polaroid for like last 3 decades. Now it’s in hands of people who have real interest and passion for instant cameras and the industry. The new company has introduced several models of Polaroid cameras to the market since then.
Looks like they want to make sure these cameras stay affordable to everyone. Polaroid Originals OneStep 2 is the first camera they released. It’s a cheap Polaroid camera which has a really nice look. OneStep 2 has an upgraded version called OneStep 2 ViewFinder.
Polaroid Instant Digital Cameras
by 2008 they stopped making all analog Polaroid Cameras and Film for those instant film cameras. The company filed for bankruptcy and was bought by a holding group. But they had a new product. Polaroid has released its first Instant Digital camera called PoGo. It was a small digital camera with instant printing. There was also a printer only model. Both of these products have used new type of instant film called Zero Ink Film or Zink which is very similar to FujiFilm Instax Mini Film.
These early Polaroid instant digital cameras were expensive compared its analog instant cameras. But Zink paper packs are cheaper than old Polaroid film. Zink paper first comes in the same format of Instax Mini Film. Later they released a bigger format with a new Polaroid camera.
Polaroid 300 instant Cameras
Polaroid 300 is not one of their own cameras. They just rebranded FujiFilm Instax Mini 7s and sold it in North America. So Polaroid 300 Film is also just FujiFilm Instax Mini Film. FujiFilm was better at making cameras than Polaroid. They made a superior quality instant camera than any other Polaroid Camera in the market. They made high-quality instant photo paper. So Polaroid Co. decided to sell the product in return for letting Fuji using Polaroid patents.
Even today, you can find Polaroid 300 cameras for sale in stores. Even though outdated for a decade or so still it’s a working camera. But in the practical sense, there is no point buying now. There are so many better FujiFilm Instax Models in the market today for a cheaper price. Instax Mini 70, Instax Mini 90 and Instax Mini 9 are good examples.
But if you already have a working Polaroid 300 camera then keep using it till it stops working. You might not find Polaroid 300 Film in the market but remember, FujiFilm Instax Mini film works for this camera without a problem. There is no point buying those too old Polaroid 300 film packs when you can get recently made Instax Mini Film.
Polaroid Integral Film Cameras
These Integral film cameras have become the most successful instant cameras ever made by Polaroid. Since mid, 70s they have released more than 50 different Polaroid camera models belong to several different integral film types. Those instant film types are Type 600, SX-70, Spectra, Captiva, i-Zone and Type330 series. This type of Instant film gave better quality photos. Among those camera types 600 series, SX-70, and Spectra cameras became very successful and profitable for Polaroid Co. All these cameras were made until the ’90s.
Millions of these cameras are out there in hands of Polaroid camera fans. in 2008, Polaroid Co. stopped production of all those old Polaroid film and cameras. After that new company called Impossible Project Co. had kept making the film for Polaroid 600, Polaroid SX-70 and Polaroid Spectra cameras. in 2017, Impossible Project Co. bought Polaroid Co. and they started new company calling Polaroid Originals. They have already started producing a new type of Polaroid cameras called i-Type instant cameras.
Polaroid Pack Film Instant Cameras
Polaroid Pack Film is also known as Peel-Apart Film. In the early 60’s they started producing an instant camera series which has automatic fstops for a cheaper price. These models were called Folding cameras and become really popular. There were four types of folding cameras called the 100, the 200, the 300, and 400 series. Apart from these, there were another 2 series of Polaroid cameras used Pack Film. The Rigid type and the Reporter type. The last Pack Film camera series was called the 80 series and Polaroid Viva with electronic flash which was released in 1984 was the last Polaroid packfilm Instant camera.
Even They stopped making PackFilm, Fujifilm was making their own type of Peel-Apart Instant film till quite recently. Still, you can find FujiFilm FP-100C Film in stores even those they stopped production a few years back. There was a project which tried to reboot type 100 with a brand called New55. But it was closed in 2017.
Polaroid RollFilm Cameras
From the First Polaroid instant photo camera to the early 60s they only released rollfilm cameras. There were three rollfilm camera series, 40 series, 30 series, and 20 series. The first Polaroid camera, Polaroid Model 95 is a type 40 camera. Polaroid made rollfilm still 1992 before discontinued. Sometimes those old film packs might still work but it’s really hard to find this film anymore.
There are people who convert these cameras to take other types of film but these converted cameras are very expensive. I have seen these on e-bay for $400 to upward. Polaroid Land Camera Model 95 was a RollFilm camera and Polaroid Swinger II which was released in the late ’60s was the last instant camera to use this type of instant film which could be used for many of those Polaroid Folding pack film cameras.
First Polaroid Camera – Land Camera Model 95
The first ever Polaroid camera which was made in 1947 was Polaroid Land Camera Model 95 ( 1948–1953 ). It used Polaroid Picture Roll Land film 40 series. they made Roll film till 1992. It becomes a huge success and They made more than 1.5 million Model 95 folding viewfinder cameras (95, 95A, 95B versions).
The original retail price of Model 95 was $89 – $95. It’s the first commercial instant camera ever built and there was a huge demand for this camera. In 1954, Model 95A Speedliner (1954–1957) came to market and in 1957 Model 95B Speedliner was introduced (1957–1961).
You can recognize the Model 95 from its spring sighting pin of the viewfinder. Other two models have a wireframe for this. All these three models use 40 Series Roll film. You can still find one of these models in working condition and even for very cheap but you won’t find any film. Some people have modified the camera so it could take other types of film. Also, there are few websites which offer this conversion services but it could be very costly and the price would be around $500.
Model 95 had a 135mm lens, 3 element glass with f/11. shutter speed was between 1/8 – 1/60. You could mount an M-sync Flash via ASA-bayonet post connector. Model 95A / Model 95B had a 130mm f/8.8 lens and the shutter speed was 1/12 – 1/100. Also, all these cameras have two tripod sockets and cable-release socket.
Edwin H. Land
When we talk about the evolution of Polaroid camera there is one person who we can’t forget. That’s Edwin Herbert Land who’s known as the inventor of Polaroid or Instant camera. Edwin Land was born in Connecticut in 1909 as the son of a scrap metal yard owner. He studied chemistry at Harvard University after attending Norwich Free Academy at Norwich, Connecticut.
At age 17, 1929 he left Harvard and started researching about light polarization. He invented inexpensive Polarizing light filter, a polarizing film he named has Polaroid Film. In 1937 he started Land-Wheelwright Laboratories with his physics instructor at Harvard and also received Family funds. Then Land received more funding from some Wall Street investors and renamed the company as Polaroid Corporation. During the second world war, he did work for military developing items like dark-adaptation goggles, target finders, Even those first passively guided smart bombs.
In 1947 Land announced about first Polaroid Camera which they called Land Camera. They originally made only the first 60 units and all sold out on the first day of demonstrations. Their success with this first camera ran for decades and Polaroid Co. was the only company which made Instant cameras until the 80s.
In 1980 Edwin Land reigned as chairmen of Polaroid Co. after Polavision instant movie system became a financial disaster. After that, he spent his time for Rowland Institute for Science which he founded. Edwin Land died on March 1, 1991, in Massachusetts.