Fujifilm SQ10 Instax: An instant/digital hybrid that makes sense

Posted on by Mike Evans

By all accounts the little Leica Sofort instant camera has been something of a quiet success. I know several proud owners who love the idea of producing an instant picture to hand round to friends. But there’s one big snag. An instant picture from a Polaroid of Instax is a unique creation, just like the original Daguerreotype. 

Britain’s Fox Talbot pipped the Frenchman with his invention of the negative/positive process which meant that many copies could be made from one print. It’s something I’d quite like to have if I bought an instant camera. 

Fuji, like Fox Talbot, has solved the problem in its new hybrid Instax Square SQ10. Not only does it hark back to the much-admired square format of the Polaroid, it adds a digital processor fed by a 1/4in CMOS sensor. The internal memory is good for around 50 shots but you can extend storage by using a micro SD card. The battery is rechargeable via a micro USB cable and will handle around 160 shots before top-up.

What I like about this concept is that you don’t waste prints. You can take your pictures digitally and, when you are happy with the results, go on to print. 

The SQ10 will cost around £218 and packs of 10-shot prints around £13. The camera is expected to be available next month. If I were to be tempted to an instant camera, I think this is the first one that really makes sense, both from the point of view of economy of use and in creative potential.