I can not lie: I’m a big fan of Fujifilm Instax printers. I also like the Instax cameras, but they have limited uses, and for the most part I do not want to carry it around. I prefer to shoot with my phone or my mirrorless camera and then print these images on an Instax printer.
As much as I love Instax prints, the original format is only 1.8 inches by 2.4 inches. It’s quite small and it’s no Polaroid. The square film in Instax format is moderately larger (2.4 inches square), but if you wanted Fujifilm’s Instax prints in the largest format (3.9 inches by 2.4 inches), you would have to buy one camera.
That was until now. The new Fujifilm Instax Link Wide smartphone printer brings the company’s largest instant film to a standalone printer.
Instax for the people
My first Instax printer was a junk purchase that has become an integral part of how I interact with people when I travel. It has also aroused interest in photography in my children. It’s not perfect, but there’s something about the magic of an instant print that transcends its limitations. They are not gallery-worthy prints, but they are definitely fun.
I am still using my old Instax SP-1 printer. The prints are a nice little gift; they are also a good icebreaker. I love photographing people, but I’m not an outgoing person, so it’s hard to ask someone to take their portrait. It is especially difficult today when everyone assumes that you will post your photo on Instagram. If you can tell someone that you are not interested in social media and offer them a print of the image right there and then, you often have a completely different conversation.
Even if you do not feel like traveling or photographing strangers, there is something about physical prints that creates a greater connection between view and image. You can not just scroll to the next image. Believe me: Make prints. You will thank yourself along the way.
This is part of why I like the new Instax Link Wide printer so much. It makes the same beautiful Instax prints, only bigger. The 3.9 x 2.4-inch prints are horizontal — the large edge of the white border is at the bottom of the long border, though there is nothing to prevent you from printing a portrait-oriented image if you want to. .
Aside from the size, the Instax Link Wide printer is very similar to Fujifilm’s Mini Link. It’s a relatively indescribable gray (or white) box, the size of three CD cases stacked up. If you are under 30, it is 5.25 inches by 4.75 inches and one inch thick. There is a single button at the top to turn it on and print the last image again. On the back you will find a USB-A port for charging (USB-C would have been nice). You load the movie at the bottom, open it, and interact fully with it via the app that connects to the printer via Bluetooth.
Instax Wide app
The new Instax Link Wide app for iOS and Android is truly the heart of the Instax Wide printer. Fujifilm apps are a mixed bag, but lately Instax has been improving. The new Wide app is very similar in functionality to the Mini Link app that comes with the company’s latest Mini printer. However, the layout is completely different and in my opinion it is much cleaner and easier to navigate.