Instax Mini 40 vs 90: Which is Best?

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When comparing the Instax Mini 40 vs 90, the Instax Mini 40 is best for new photographers and those who don’t want to mess around with camera settings while the Instax Mini 90 is best for those who like to fine-tune their photographs and need creative control.

The Fujifilm Instax Mini range are genuinely one of the best ranges of film cameras on the market.

They may not have the fancy features of traditional film cameras like the Canon AE-1 or Contax T2, but they give you one thing that older analogue cameras don’t – you get a photo print almost instantly.

For me, the Instax cameras are what makes photography fun. Even though you give up a lot of technical ability, both the Instax 90 and 40 are massively enjoyable to use, and you can still create some really interesting photos.

In this article, we’re going to take an in-depth look at comparing the Instax Mini 90 vs 40 to see which is going to be best for you, using my extensive photography experience.

instax mini 40 vs 90

Instax Mini 40 vs 90 Quick Comparison

My Top Pick

Ideal Beginner Camera

instax mini 40
  • Very easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Perfect for beginners
  • Framing mirror for selfies
  • Ideal basic point and shoot camera
  • Lacks much manual control
Very easy to use, even for beginners, the Instax Mini 40 is the perfect selfie or snapshot camera and is loads of fun.
If you want something simple and don’t care about needless features, and you want a great bargain, the Mini 40 is for you.

Better for Advanced Photographers

instax mini 90
  • Strong advanced features
  • Macro, multi-exposure and other modes
  • More manual control possible
  • Uses a rechargeable battery
  • Expensive
The Instax Mini 90 gives you ultimate creative control but at a much higher price tag.
It’s designed for more serious photographers who value creative modes, but this can make it a little OTT for beginners.

Instax Mini 40 Review

Measuring 104×121×65 mm, the Instax Mini 40 weighs around 11.6 oz and is something of a joy to hold after all those heavy digital cameras.

It has a cool retro design with its square, boxy shape and features a plastic body with a faux leather textured finish with silver detailing, which is very similar to the vintage Leica.

The textured plastic finish of the camera makes it quite comfortable to hold and use. The camera has a flash next to the viewfinder and a shutter button located below.

By pressing the button located on the right side of the camera, you can release the lens, with it otherwise almost flush with the body for easier storage.

instax mini 40

The camera has a flip-out rear cover, which you open to load the film pack. There is a small counter window at the back, which allows you to see how many shots are left on the film pack and you can attach a wrist strap to the left or right side of the camera.

The Mini 40 features a 60 mm f/1.27 lens that pops out when you press the button on the camera. The camera also has a mirror next to the lens on the front of the camera, which lets you check the framing for when you’re in selfie mode.

To use it for selfiies, you pull the lens out further until the “Selfie On” mark, which makes sure anything close to the lens is in focus. You can also use this for a kind of macro-style photography.

The camera lens has a minimum focal length of 0.3 m and FOV of that of a 35 mm lens on a standard film camera.

The Mini 40 has an in-built fully automatic flash that fires each time you press the shutter button irrespective of the lighting conditions. The camera has a variable shutter speed that has a range of ½ sec to 1/250 sec and an auto-adjusted exposure.

fujifilm instax mini 40

The Mini 40 works on 2 AA batteries and produces consistent exposures delivering very good photos with sharp and vibrant colors.

It’s a great camera to capture vertical pictures and the stylish credit card size prints produced by the camera are nice and charming and great for albums or to use as fridge stickers.

Overall, the Mini 40 instant camera with its stylish retro aesthetic, affordable price and good performance is fun, user friendly and an excellent entry-level camera for beginners.

It’s lacking in shooting modes and doesn’t really let you have much manual control – this is a true point and shoot film camera – but that makes it much less intimidating for those new to film photography, and also massively reduces the price tag.

Instax Mini 90 Features

The Instax Mini 90 from Fujifilm is a very nice-looking instant camera that has several advanced features. Measuring 3.6”x4.5”x2.3”, the Mini 90 weighs around 10.4 oz and is pretty much the same as Mini 40 in general looks.

One of the most attractive Fujifilm Instax cameras, the Mini 90 has a 2-tone finish. The camera comes in 3 colors, brown, red and Neo Classic leatherette with silver accents.

The camera is equipped with a 60 mm f/12.7 lens, which has an angle of view of 35mm just like a full-frame lens and an optical viewfinder that helps to frame the images.

fujifilm instax mini 90

The Mini 90 is a point-and-shoot camera that you need to simply turn on, point at the subject and press the shutter button. The camera has an in-built flash that fires automatically, although you can disable it using the rear button.

The camera has other rear buttons, which let you take macro shots, darken or brighten the automatic exposure, switch on the self-timer or change the mode of the camera.

The Mini 90 has exposure settings for landscape, portraits, long exposures, fast action and multi-exposure on the same frame, which is great if you want to get more creative and aren’t just taking selfies or snapshots.

The camera also has a specific button to turn the flash on/off, adjust the exposure and cycle through the different creative modes, i.e., bulb mode, party mode and macro mode, allowing you to choose the settings you want very easily.

Exposure control works with the various modes, i.e. the dark mode (D) lets you make the image darker, with the light mode (L), you can make the image brighter or brighten it even more with the L+ or extra light mode.

The active mode is displayed on the monochrome display of the camera and by pressing the Mode button or by turning the control ring that’s around the lens, the cycle through the various modes. You can also see the number of shots remaining on the display.

Double exposure mode allows you to take 2 exposures on the same film and get a combination of the 2 images, allowing you to experiment with your shots.

instax mini photo example

The Mini 90 also has a tripod socket that lets you set up the camera for a group shot and also includes a self-timer mode. The camera has a long-lasting rechargeable NP-455 battery, which loads in the compartment in the rear, and it comes with an external battery charger.

The Mini 90 delivers excellent photos in regular light conditions with crisp, bright and vibrant colors. Compared to other Fujifilm instant cameras, the Mini 90 offers greater creative control, but at a higher price tag and with potentially less intuitive controls.

I think that overall the Mini 90 has a user-friendly, streamlined interface that makes it extremely easy to use, but there’s no doubt that there are many more buttons and modes than the Mini 40.

Overall, the Instax Mini 90 camera with its attractive vintage aesthetics is one of the best-looking cameras in the Instax line.

Although the Mini 90 is more expensive compared to the Mini 40, its features, and the creative control it offers over the photos make it worth the price and a great buy if you are a more advanced photographer.

Similarities Between the Instax Mini 40 vs 90

Both the Instax Mini 40 and 90 will mostly be able to take the same pictures, and I don’t think you can really make a bad choice with either of them.

They have a retro styling with a plastic body and a rear flip-out cover to load the film. They’re both also equipped with a 60 mm f/12.7 lens with a 35 mm angle of view.

Both cameras use the same Fujifilm Instax Mini instant film. The cameras are very easy to use. They deliver high-quality photos with bright, vibrant colors and you can get stylish credit card size prints with both.

instax mini photo example

Differences Between the Instax Mini 40 vs 90

The Mini 40 is available in a single black color with silver accents, whereas the Mini 90 comes in 3 colors i.e., brown, red and Neo Classic (black) with silver accents. The Mini 40 is slightly heavier compared to the Mini 90.

The Mini 90 has several buttons giving you access to far more modes, whereas the Mini 40 only has 2 buttons.

The Mini 40 is powered by 2 AA batteries but the Mini 90 has a rechargeable battery and comes with an external charger.

The Mini 40 comes with an inbuilt flash that fires automatically every time you take a photo. The Mini 90 also has an inbuilt automatic flash; however, it can be disabled if needed.

The Mini 90 has several exposure modes, which the Mini 40 does not have. You can take selfies with the Mini 40. The Mini 90 is more expensive compared to the Mini 40 camera and offers more creative control.

So, Should You Go For The Instax Mini 40 or 90?

Whether the Instax Mini 40 or 90 is best for you depends on if you value the ability to fine-tune your photos, with the Mini 90 giving you much more control over exposure and other creative areas.

If you just want something for snapshots or selfies, don’t want to worry about settings and expect your camera to take flawless photos every time with you only needed to press the shutter, then the Mini 40 is the best choice.

If you’ve had previous experience with digital cameras and feel like you want a camera to grow with, the Mini 90 would suit you best, but for me, the Mini 40 is just that bit more “fun” and what an instant camera should be. It’s also significantly cheaper.

instax mini 40

Fujifilm Instax Mini 40

instax mini 90

Fujifilm Instax Mini 90

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