Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs Mini 9: if you upgrade

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs Mini 9: if you upgrade

Few instant cameras have managed to reach the level of popularity like the Fujifilm Instax Mini 9. This instant camera not only produces excellent photos the size of a credit card, but is also affordable, unlike many. its rivals like the Canon Ivy or the Polaroid Now. And now with the Instax Mini 11 we have a new successor in the house.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 9

The Instax Mini 11 isn’t just another iterative upgrade. It contains some important features. Like its predecessor, it comes in a bunch of attractive colors. And guess what, it uses the same film-based printing mechanism.

Most importantly, it is very inexpensive (compared to its competition).

So that brings us to an important question: What improvement does the Instax Mini 11 bring? And is it worth upgrading to the Mini 11 if you already own a Mini 9?

Well, this is what we are going to explore in this article today comparing the Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 to the Instax Mini 9.

As this is going to be a long post, let’s get started right away, okay?

Specifications that matter

PropertyFujifilm Instax Mini 9Fujifilm Instax Mini 11
PropertyFujifilm Instax Mini 9Fujifilm Instax Mini 11
Printing methodInstant FilmInstant Film
Maximum paper size2.44 x 1.81 inches2.44 x 1.81 inches
Paper capacitytenten
Capable VideoNoNo
LED light meterYesNo
Integrated Selfie MirrorNo (snap-in selfie lens attachment)Yes
Tripod mountNoNo
Charging methodAA batteriesAA batteries

1. Design and specifications

It should be safe to say that the Mini 11 doesn’t look much different from the Mini 9. While the Mini 9 is a bit more sturdy, the Mini 11 has managed to achieve a slimmer and narrower body. This makes it easy to hold, even by children with small hands. All you need is a well-textured cover and you’ll have a durable camera in your hands.

32 Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 9

32 Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 9

Both cameras are made of smooth matte plastic. However, if you take a closer look, you will find that Fujifilm has made several changes to the new camera.

On the one hand, the thumb rest on the back is much more pronounced, and the Mini 11’s narrow construction makes the camera easy to hold.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 5

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 5

There are also some subtle changes. For example, the viewfinder has adopted a circular shape.

When it comes to specs, it’s safe to say there are quite a few well-placed changes. The Mini 11 sports a moderate wide-angle lens with an aperture of f / 12.7.

Another major change in this iteration is the inclusion of a variable shutter speed automatic exposure system. If you remember, the Mini 9 had metering LEDs near the shutter. You had to manually adjust the exposure based on the ambient light around you before clicking on a photo.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 1

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 1

Well, the Mini 11 can now compensate for the light and take photos accordingly.

And that’s not the end of the story. The Mini 11 also brings an extended lens to the table. If you want to capture selfies or close-up photos, you will need to remove the lens barrel a bit and shoot the photo. Sounds interesting, right? When we talk about numbers, removing the barrel reduces the focus distance to between 35cm and 50cm.

Obviously, capturing selfies is nothing more than just turning the camera towards you, looking at the reflection in the small mirror next to the cannon. You’ll need a bit of experience before you land the perfect selfie.

The Mini 9 also comes with a clip-on selfie accessory. However, there is no concept of a barrel lens.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 8

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 8
Instax mini 9

Like its predecessor, the Instax Mini 11 also uses the 2.4 x 1.8 inch Instax Mini instant film.

It should be noted that the new camera does away with the tripod socket at the bottom. But luckily, it sports a flat bottom and can sit upright without any issues.

2. Exposure parameters and measurement LEDs

As stated before, the Mini 9 comes with manual exposure settings and a fixed shutter speed (1/60) and you have to choose the brightness settings manually based on the ambient light. There are five settings to choose from: very sunny, sunny, cloudy, indoor and high.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 7

Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 vs. Mini 9 7
Instax mini 9

To switch between the five settings, you need to change the adjustment ring and then press the shutter button.

In contrast to that, the Mini 11 comes with a variable shutter speed automatic exposure system. You can choose the shutter speed between 1/2 and 1/250, depending on the light captured in the sensor.

These settings will allow you to get better photos. So yes, you don’t have to worry about whitewashed skies or dark frames in your photos to some extent.

3. Charging and battery methods

When it comes to battery life, Fujifilm hasn’t changed the system much. Both cameras run on two AA batteries and let you browse 10 packs of film, before calling it a day.

About 10 packets of film or 100 individual photos are more than enough to get by in a single day.

The best bet would be to get a pair of rechargeable AA batteries (see Energizer Rechargeable Battery Charger). Not only does this help reduce e-waste, but it also helps prevent last minute errands to the department store.


Let’s get some things on the table first. Instant movies will never have the same camera quality as DSLRs or smartphone cameras. Instead, they have old world charm, thanks to the soft focus.

On the other hand, filmed photos are much better than ZINK photos.

When it comes to the new Instax Mini 11, the photos look more natural, and as you might expect, the autofocus feature plays a major role in it. As stated before, there is less risk of overexposed photos and overexposed skies. However, they weren’t completely gone, all thanks to the nature of the film used.

Photo performance

Photo performance

Compared to those captured by the Mini 9, you’ll see crisp, crisp images, and that’s a huge plus. So even if you take photos indoors, the background will remain in focus. If you remember, the Mini 9 produces a dark background in photos.

The same goes for close-ups and selfies. Images are crisp and well detailed.

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Capture beautiful moments

The new generation of the Instax camera brings an improved set of features to this table. You get a better set of photos in your hands, and that’s one of the best things about this camera. With the autofocus kicking in, you can do without the hassle of adjusting the barrel brightness ring. Hello, aim and shoot.

Well, the ability to remove the lens barrel to take selfies and close-ups is the icing on the cake.

The Mini 9 is a great camera on its own. It is one of the cheapest instant cameras on the market. The operation is simple and easy, and the different cameras and photo accessories add to the fun quotient.

It’s not that the Mini 9 camera is a disappointment. It lets you do whatever you want with an instant camera. In fact, you can attach a selfie lens accessory if you want to capture the same. However, it’s 2020 and those features don’t cut it off anymore.

So if you want the best of the Fuji Instax Mini series, the Mini 11 is the one you should invest in.


How does the Canon IVY CLIQ compare to the Fuji Instax Mini 9? Read the next article to learn all about it.

Last updated on August 28, 2020

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