What’s the Best Point and Shoot Film Camera 2022?

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Maybe you’re finding digital photography a little boring and you want to rekindle your love for taking pictures – there’s no better way than film photography.

I got my first film camera, a Kodak Instamatic, around 30 years ago, and although I can’t say that I use that model any more, I’ve still got a lot of love for analog film cameras, and have spent years using them and playing with them, learning a great deal about photography along the way.

This article contains all my knowledge on the best point and shoot film camera, divided into three sections according to your budget:

  • The best point and shoot film camera under $50
  • The best point and shoot film camera under $100
  • The best point and shoot film camera under $200

This is specific to point and shoot cameras, and so does not include SLRs or anything with interchangeable lenses, and every one can be had for under the price listed in the category (obviously ‘used’ and not ‘new’). These are ideal starter cameras, and the best point and shoot film cameras for beginners due to their easy operation.

There’s some good examples of 90s point and shoot film cameras here, plus even earlier models, and this list includes the smallest point and shoot film camera, so if you’re looking for the best cheap point and shoot film camera, then you’ve come to the right place.


best point and shoot film camera
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Where to Get the Best Cheap Point and Shoot Film Camera?

Before we dive into the top film cameras under $50, under $100 and under $200, it’s worth taking a look at where to get them. Because none of these are brand new, they have to be found used. Luckily, there are a few excellent sources where you can easily find these cameras.

Because these cameras are so cheap, there are generally plenty available – these are not rare models.

Good places to buy cheap point and shoot film cameras are:

  • eBay – probably the best place to find used cameras, and somewhere that I use for a lot of my camera gear. The massive advantage of eBay over other sites is that there are still plenty of individual sellers in amongst the professional sellers, meaning that you can often get a really good deal, and the lowest prices on these cameras.
  • Used Photo Pro – they stock a large range of used camera gear, with plenty of film cameras in varying conditions. Prices are likely to be higher than eBay, but you get piece of mind with a 180-day warranty (depending on condition), and you know that the cameras have been accurately described (which is not necessarily true of eBay). This is a really good choice for the rarer models of camera.
  • Etsy – very similar to eBay in terms of availability, although you often pay higher prices at Etsy, as sellers tend to be a little more professional, offering fuller checks of the cameras before sale.
  • Amazon – camera quality can be variable from Amazon sellers, and prices tend to be a little higher, but it can be useful to find models that are out of stock elsewhere.
  • Facebook – local Facebook groups can be a good way to find older camera gear, particularly by asking in groups belonging to local camera clubs.
  • Second-Hand Stores – any local stores that sell items from house clearances or donations are always a good bet, as you can get very cheap cameras this way. It’s rare that you find a quality item though, and you have little idea of how well a camera is likely to work before purchase.

15 Best Point and Shoot Film Cameras 2022

We’re taking a look at fifteen point and shoot film cameras in total, divided up into price bands. You can see where and when prices were found below each camera model, but remember they can fluctuate quite a lot depending on camera condition and popularity.


5 Best Point and Shoot Film Cameras Under $50

You might have to search around to find these cameras, but all are generally widely available for less than $50. Because of their low price, any of these models would also work well as the best point and shoot film camera for beginners.

1. Pentax PC-700

best point and shoot film camera for beginners

Price: $25 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Pentax PC-700 is an impressive point-and-shoot camera and makes a perfect choice for beginners thanks to its easy handling, good performance and low price, and is my pick for the best point and shoot film camera under $50.

It has a point and shoot 35mm focal length with three glass elements to help with unwanted light dispersion. It also allows you to set a fairly wide film speed of ISO 100 to 400. It weighs only 215 grams, allowing you to walk around with it, or easily fit it in your pocket or camera pack. 

Perhaps the greatest advantage over similar cameras is that the Pentax PC-700 is also weatherproof and therefore can be used to take pictures in rain, on the beach or in other challenging conditions. Not having to worry about it getting damaged while taking pictures outside in difficult conditions is a huge plus in my book.

There is auto film winding, plus a red eye reduction flash setting on the built-in flash, which has an easy to use selector switch, with the buttons and switches overall very simple to use, making it a largely automatic film camera.

Having such a small, light point and shoot that can survive the elements makes the Pentax PC-700 a really strong choice for those looking for the best film point and shoot camera, although if you want the ultimate in image quality at this price point, then the Olympus Trip is a better choice.

Pros

  • It is weather-resistant and will thus survives rough handling better than other models. You can also take it out in the rain or snow and still get a good picture quality. 
  • Very easy to use control setup – perfect for beginners.
  • Built-in flash with red eye reduction.
  • Light (215g), small film camera.

Cons

  • The camera struggles to focus over longer distances.
  • Lens quality isn’t quite as high as other models, although is still very good.

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2. Canon Snappy S

Best Point and Shoot Film Camera Under $50

Price: $35 on eBay (Feb 2022)

Two AAA size batteries power the Canon Snappy S, which are much easier to find than the more unusual batteries of similar automatic 35mm cameras.

Unlike some camera models, it comes in a range of color options to choose from and has a 35mm f/4.5 lens. There are three glass elements in three groups, which is pretty standard for this type of camera, with the shutter and aperture electromagnetically controlled and work well despite nearly 40 year age of the camera. 

The camera has a fixed focus and is thus simple to handle. Its reversed Galilean viewfinder comes in a yellow projected frame.

It has an automated camera-shake warning which is useful if you don’t have steady hands and don’t want blurry photos, and there is battery check functionality. This Canon compact film camera is thus a reliable option for a beginner with its simple controls and good picture quality. 

Pros

  • Decent in-built flash. 
  • Pretty easy to fix if it breaks, and it is such a simple device. 
  • The camera is powered by two AAA batteries which are readily available and cheap. 
  • Camera shake warning. 

Cons

  • The AAAs drain pretty quickly.

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Read More:

What’s the best Canon film camera?


3. Olympus Trip XB Series

best compact film camera

Price: $42 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Olympus Trip XB series are excellent film cameras for a beginner if you are on a tight budget and often traveling. At less than 300 grams, it is among the lightest options for you. The camera is simple to operate since it is focus-free and will thus take steadier pictures. It has an automatic setting for ISO 100 and 400 films. 

There is a built-in lens cover on this Olympus point and shoot camera that protects it from dust accumulations and scratches when carrying it around or while it is stored. Models like the XB41 have a 27mm f/6.7 wide-angle lens that gives you a wider field of view and thus allows you to take better and higher-quality pictures, or you can go for a slightly longer 34mm lens in the XB3.

It has an automated in-built flash that will detect the lighting conditions and switch on at appropriate times, and there is also a red-eye reduction effect. The Olympus Trip XB series have self-timer functions and are powered by two AAA batteries.

There’s no one stand out camera from the lineup, with any of them being a good choice for best compact film camera.

Pros

  • It is focus-free, making it easier to take pictures while on the move.
  • It is powered by AAA batteries which are cheap to find. Some options are also rechargeable. 
  • It has a self-timer option. 
  • The camera has an in-built and automated flash. 

Cons

  • The response time on the automated flash is quite long and can be unreliable.

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4. Pentax IQZoom Series

pentax point and shoot

Price: $39 on Used Photo Pro (Feb 2022)

The Pentax IQZoom comes in a range of focal lengths, but all have a zoom lens that takes them from medium wide-angle to mid-long telephoto, typicall with apertures of f4.8 to f12.5.

This Pentax point and shoot camera is really good for travel photography, with the panorama effect giving you a real 1980s feel.

Its flash has different light options depending on the lighting conditions you are taking your pictures in. You can keep it off, set it to slow sync or allow automated flashes depending on the lighting conditions.

There is a bulb mode for long exposures, but this is limited to only keeping the shutter open for one minute.

Although the model doesn’t come with one, the IQZoom can be operated by remote. The Pentax IQZoom has a wide ISO range selector of 25 to 3200 ISO for optimal exposure control.

The various focusing modes and the autofocus is reliable, and the whole camera is straightforward to use, especially for a new beginner with little skills. 

Pros

  • Zoom lens (depending on the model in the series) from 38 – 70mm, 38 – 130mm & 38 – 160mm.
  • It has a bulb mode that keeps the flash on for up to one minute. 
  • It has a wide ISO range selecor. 
  • Good autofocus modes. 

Cons

  • Bulb mode only keeps the shutter open for one minute max.

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5. Canon Sure Shot 60 Zoom

canon compact film camera

Price: $40 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Canon Sure Shot 60 Zoom has a metallic finish like many cameras from the 90s and is pretty durable and hard to break.

You get a 38 to 60mm zoom capability in a relatively small camera. A five-point autofocusing feature ensures better picture quality, although this is of course nowhere near the autofocus quality of modern cameras. 

You can easily switch between the panoramic and normal picture modes, and all in all, get a solid performer, with plenty of models available on the used market, thanks to its initial popularity.

Pros

  • It is light and highly portable – ideal for travel. 
  • The Canon Sure Shot 60 Zoom is simple to use and switch between photo modes. 
  • Autofocus allows for better picture quality. 
  • The camera’s zoom works smoothly. 

Cons

  • Short battery life and uses a less common CR123A battery..

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5 Best Point and Shoot Film Cameras Under $100

These models are more popular than the cheaper set above, but this does not necessarily mean that they have more automatic functions. In fact, point and shoot film cameras under $100 tend to be characterised by a more vintage design and an emphasis on manual controls.

1. Ricoh FF-1

best point and shoot film camera under $100

Price: $90 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Ricoh FF-1 was first released in 1978 and is among the best vintage point and shoot camera options available. The camera has a programmed auto-exposure control and 35mm lens, wide enough to cover a decent field of view. The f2.8 aperture really gives you a shallow depth of field, with the excellent lens itself having four elements in three groups. The electronic shutter on the camera is rated 2 – 1/500 second which should cover most use cases. 

It is powered by 2 LR44 button batteries that are easily replaced. Additionally, it weighs 225 grams making it portable and easy to carry along to long photo sessions. The focus option on the camera is manually adjusted

The Ricoh FF-1 is not a camera that you hear much about, but is actually delivers a fun photography experience, and very good picture quality, and is a contender for the title of best analog compact camera, and for my money is the best point and shoot film camera under $100.

Pros

  • The lens is covered by a flap when not in use, giving it excellent protection from the elements. 
  • It is powered by button batteries that are easier to find than the batteries of some other models. 
  • The camera is light and highly portable. 
  • Its wide field of view and strong f2.8 lens delivers high-quality pictures. 

Cons

  • Manual focusing on the camera can be challenging, especially for a beginner.

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2. Rollei Prego 90

best analogue camera

Price: $80 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Rollei Prego 90 has a strong 28 – 90mm lens that gives high-quality pictures. It has a good zoom range for a point and shoot camera and low distortion, allowing you to focus on distant images and still get clear pictures. It has an exposure compensation control so you don’t have to rely on the automated system, giving you more control over your final photos. 

The camera is surprisingly durable. It will sustain falls and scratches with little damage, and you don’t have to worry about it malfunctioning when you drop it from small heights. The camera has an automated inbuilt flash that will adjust accordingly with the available light.

The Rollei Prego 90 is both reliable and quite budget-friendly for a beginner, making it one of the best analogue cameras. 

Pros

  • The camera is durable and will withstand falls and bumps while taking pictures on the go. 
  • It has an automated flash that ensures all your images are clear regardless of the lighting conditions. 
  • It has a strong lens that gives high picture quality. 
  • The camera offers minimal distortion, allowing you to get clearer pictures from a longer distance. 

Cons

  • The camera can be uncomfortable to use for longer periods of time with its grip design.

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3. Minox 35 EL

best compact 35mm camera

Price: $60 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Minox 35 EL weighs 190g, making it among the smallest point and shoot cameras. The 35mm f/2.8 camera lens ensures you have high-quality pictures. It is also protected by a casing that ensures it doesn’t get any scratches or breaks.

The camera has a manual zone focus and a shutter range of 1/30 to 1/500. This is generally pretty good but means that you can’t use it for long exposure photography or photos in darker conditions. The aperture range on the Minox 35 EL is f/2.8 – f/16 for peak performance. 

The camera is constructed from metal alloys that make it durable. It can sustain small falls without breaking. It is thus reliable in tough traveling and photography conditions. The lens on the camera is a four-element, three group design and is protected by a flap when not in use.

Thanks to its small size, the Minox 35 EL is a good choice for the best compact 35mm camera, although if you wanted a film camera with flash you would have to look elsewhere.

Pros

  • The camera is among the lightest options available. 
  • It is made from a metal alloy that makes it durable and ensures it can sustain small falls. 
  • Its lens is good and produces high-quality images with minimal distortion. 
  • Very simple operation with few buttons.

Cons

  • No automatic functions.

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4. Pentax PC35 AF

Pentax PC35 AF

Price: $80 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Pentax PC35 AF is powered by two AAA batteries and comes with a 35mm f/2.8 lens with 5 elements, guaranteeing great picture quality. The camera has an integrated pop-up flash that can be manually activated depending on the lighting conditions. It uses an electronic leaf shutter with 1/8 to 1/430 speeds. 

These are quite good for the price point on the camera. It has a self-timer that gives you a 10-second delay, and has plenty of controls dotted around the body.

The Pentax PC35 AF uses an Albada viewfinder with 85% coverage and an autofocus frame. You have to set the ISO manually on the camera, and it has a 25-400 ASA range. The PC35 has a really unique design that looks fun, and is also very enjoyable to take photos with.

Pros

  • Good looking design and fun to use. 
  • It offers a 10-second delay timer. 
  • The camera has a decent autofocus
  • Easily accessible batteries power the camera. 
  • Popup flash. 

Cons

  • The ISO is adjusted manually.

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5. Canon Sure Shot Supreme

point and shoot film camera under $100

Price: $95 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Canon Sure Shot Supreme was introduced in 1986 and is a worthy contender to the more famous Olumpus Mju II. It uses an infra-red triangulation system for autofocusing and allows you to lock it into place when needed. The camera has a 38m  focal length with an f/2.8 speed. The 4 element glass ensures you always have high-quality pictures. 

The camera has an auto flash, and depending on the light available, it will auto-adjust, or you can disable it at will, although this does require you to hold down a very small button located on the bottom of the camera.

The shutter button has some uneven give to it, with the half-press to activate the autofocus very smooth, but the full press being much stiffer.

The Sure Shot Supreme has an auto-loading feature for the film, and at 315g, the camera is pretty portable, although there are smaller models around.

Pros

  • It’s solidly built and will withstand rough handling. 
  • It offers good picture quality. 
  • There’s a self-timer option and auto-flash. 
  • It has a good autofocus system. 

Cons

  • The camera drains its batteries fast.

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5 Best Point and Shoot Film Cameras Under $200

The point and shoot film cameras under $200 are not necessarily the best models here. They are often at this higher price because they have a cult following, or some unique feature set. Nonetheless, all of these are still excellent cameras.

1. Olympus XA2

Best Point and Shoot Film Cameras Under $200

Price: $140 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Olympus XA2 was released following the success of the revolutionary Olympus XA. Its developers aimed to address the first model’s inherent problems, especially its cost. They thus released this model, the perfect camera option for those looking for the best point and shoot film camera under $200.

The camera has a three-zone and scale focusing system that allows for better focusing and higher picture quality. It also has an automated metering system. Four elements supplement the sharp f/3.5 lens to ensure you get good picture quality in every shot. It also has a focusing scale, and it automatically chooses the shutter speed and the aperture for the best results.

 It is very easy to use, and so even beginners can get good pictures with little experience. The autofocus feature on the Olympus XA2 works well, and it will comfortably focus on images from three feet to infinity immediately after opening the lens cover. 

The camera has a self-timer, meaning that you can include yourself in all these pictures. The camera has an inbuilt and automated flash and will capture crisp images even in low light. Its 200g weight makes it portable, and one of the best 35mm point and shoot cameras, as well as the best film camera for street photography.

Pros

  • It is powered by two SR44 button batteries that are easily available. 
  • It is light and portable. 
  • It automatically focuses on your target, ranging from 3 feet to infinity, which is perfect for those more used to automatic digital cameras.
  • There’s plenty of manual settings that you can make, or you can leave the camera on semi-auto.

Cons

  • The camera can be challenging to handle because of its design.

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2. Nikon L35AF

nikon point and shoot 35mm

Price: $190 on eBay (Feb 2022)

This was the first camera by Nikon to have an autofocus feature, which makes it not only a great camera, but an interesting piece of history. The camera has a solid design, making it durable and perfect for traveling.

The lens is a 35mm f/2.8 option with the autofocus working from 0.8m to infinity, delivering quality pictures from the get go, through its 5 elements and 4 groups design. 

The exposure is fully automatic and will adjust based on your lighting conditions. The L35AF accepts film speed in the range from ASA/ISO 50 to 1000. Its integral flash can be automated to respond to your lighting conditions and the camera weighs around 300 grams and is powered by two batteries.

If you want a quick and easy Nikon point and shoot 35mm camera, then the Nikon L35AF is it.

Pros

  • Its durability makes it perfect for outdoor usage. 
  • Plenty of user selectable options including an automated flash. 
  • Nikon’s first autofocus. 
  • The camera is portable and still looks well designed. 

Cons

  • It drains its batteries pretty quickly. 

>> Check Latest Price on:

Read More:

What’s the best Nikon film camera?


3. Canon Sure Shot WP-1

waterproof film camera

Price: $160 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Canon Sure Shot WP-1 stands out from many cameras by being waterproof, without needing a separate case, and it’s well calibrated to compensate for the changes in light depending on whether you use it on land or in the water. 

It has a 32mm f/3.5 lens which offers a wider field of view for your images, and has a macro selector switch, enabling focusing as close as 0.45m from the lens. It has few controls as most of its features will adjust automatically. This keeps it pretty compact and makes it very easy to pick up and use. 

The camera has an automated flash that can be disabled when you want to. Its focusing length covers a huge distance, and this compact film camera is powered by two AA batteries.

Pros

  • The camera is waterproof and can be used underwater to specific depths. This is a leading factor that sets it apart from other cameras. 
  • Its batteries are easy to find. 
  • The camera has a good build quality and will not get easily damaged by knocks and bumps.
  • It features many automated options to ensure you always have the best picture quality, whether on land or in the water. 

Cons

  • The camera has few setting options as some of its features are fixed.

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4. Olympus XA

olympus point and shoot

Price: $115 on Used Photo Pro (Feb 2022)

The Olympus XA was introduced into the market in 1979 and fast gained the reputation of an engineering masterpiece in camera manufacturing. It saw huge success, unmatched by any cameras at the time. It has been superseded by the XA2 in terms of features, but can still be a worthwhile choice if this Olympus point and shoot can be found at a good price.

The camera has a 35mm f/2.8 lens with six elements ans uses an internal focusing mechanism that works without the outer segment of the camera moving. It thus allows you to focus much faster and make adjustments with higher precision. It has a 3 feet minimum focusing distance and a maximum infinity distance. The camera has an manual speed selection, ranging from 25 to 800.

It uses leaf shutters with a max shutter speed of 1/500 second, and the aperture priority setting with auto-exposure ensures you always get a perfectly exposed photo. Many automated settings make it convenient for beginners particularly to use this camera.

It also has an automated power feature that turns the camera off when the clamshell is closed to preserve battery life. There’s a simple and convenient film loading and rewinding option and the XA will count up to 40 frames in this process.

Pros

  • The automated power-off feature allows the battery charge to last longer by switching the camera off when not in use. 
  • It is light and thus portable for your long photographing adventures. 
  • Simple controls are ideal for beginners.
  • The internal focusing feature works well. 

Cons

  • The camera is relatively costly compared to others with similar features.

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5. Olympus Infinity Series

film camera under $200

Price: $180 on eBay (Feb 2022)

The Olympus Infinity series comes in many different flavors, ranging from the Infinity Zoom at aroun $70, to the Inifinity Stylus at around $200.

The Zoom has a 0.6m focusing range, with models available with zoom ranges from 38-76mm f/4.5-6.2, or up to 38-105mm. It has an impressive 7 elements in 7 groups to deliver high picture quality on close targets with a shutter speed of 1/500th – 2 seconds. 

All Olympus Infinity’s have an auto flash and several modes depending on the lighting conditions. You can also select between the auto and infinity shooting modes. 

2 AA batteries power the camera and it weighs 360 grams.

Pros

  • Its batteries are simple to find and quite cheap. 
  • It is light and thus portable for long photography assignments. 
  • It has a 12-second self-timer delay. 
  • It has a strong lens that ensures high picture quality. 

Cons

  • The better rated Infinity Stylus does not have a zoom lens.

>> Check Latest Price on:


So What’s the Best Point and Shoot Film Camera for Beginners?

We’ve looked at a large number of point and shoot film cameras in this article, but for me, the best point and shoot film camera for beginners is the Pentax PC 700, thanks to its ultra low price, wide availability, and simple to use controls. It also includes atuo-focus and is weather resistant, making it a really strong choice to start learning film photography.

Once you graduate from this, you’ll want to move to something with more manual controls, like the Ricoh FF-1 or the Olympus XA2, but any of the models in this list should serve you well.

The most important thing is that you get a camera, and get out taking photos. As long as you do that, the type of camera you use is not too important.


Read More:

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What are the best cameras under $300?

How to find the best DSLR for beginners

Contax T2 vs T3

Follow Tim Daniels:

Hi, I'm Tim Daniels, photographer and photo trainer, founder of Lapse of the Shutter and creator of the totally free Lightroom Develop System. I've travelled to (probably) 30 countries over the last few years, taking photos and licensing them around the world, and creating lots of free photography learning resources. Read More ...

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