The Impossible Project announces an instant camera with built in ring flash

Apr 12, 2016

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

The Impossible Project announces an instant camera with built in ring flash

Apr 12, 2016

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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When it comes to the unlikely and improbable, few overcome it better than The Impossible Project.  It seems hard to imagine that we’d be seeing the launch of a new film camera in 2016, but that’s exactly what’s happened.

Of course, the new I-1 camera does contain some very handy and modern features, not found in the other instant alternatives, such as a built in “advanced ring flash”, autofocus, and BlueTooth connectivity for full manual control from your mobile device.

The camera uses Impossible Type 600 film (replacing the discontinued Polaroid 600 film), and instead of taking the current popular path of designing new cameras to look like old cameras, and shoving features in wherever they can, Impossible have taken a modern but simple approach to design, with a practical set of features.

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One notable feature is that it comes with an “advanced ring flash” built right into the front of the camera around the lens.  While ring flashes are becoming more and more popular, especially for this type of analogue photography, it’s not the first thing one would normally think of when designing a new camera.

The flash automatically adjusts itself based on focal distance and existing lighting, which should make an excellent light source as either an on-axis fill light, or as a key light for portraits in darker conditions.  Portraits does seem to be what Impossible have determined will be the primary subject matter for this camera.

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What particularly intrigues me about this camera is that as well as the standard controls that we’d expect, is that it also offers built in bluetooth for connecting up to an iOS application (no mention of an Android app, yet, sorry!) for full remote control over your aperture, shutter speed, and flash power.

The app also allows photographers to program double exposures, long exposures, and for use as a remote camera trigger for instant selfies, if that’s your thing.

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While it may end up quite low down on my own list of future gear acquisitions, I could definitely see myself shooting one of these with the remote control feature becoming quite handy for those on-location behind-the-scenes shots for social media.

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Are you happy using Impossible film with your current Polaroid cameras?  Or are you now planning to add one of these to your arsenal?  Let us know in the comments.

The Impossible Project I-1 camera will be available for sale from May 10th, and cost $300.

[Impossible Project via Bokeh]

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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5 responses to “The Impossible Project announces an instant camera with built in ring flash”

  1. Joscha Häring Avatar
    Joscha Häring

    I love the fact that they’ve made a new instant camera but I don’t dig the design and form factor. A while ago they said they’d have the sx70 in mind while designing a new camera. But that would be a much more complicated structure. Looking forward to see more pictures from the I-1.

    1. Optical Overlays Avatar
      Optical Overlays

      Cool :p

  2. Jim Thompson Avatar
    Jim Thompson

    Looks like a 1930’s Banker’s Phone with no handset. I dig it! It’s what non Polaroids and Kodaks might have wound up looking like from the 80’s on if there wasn’t that whole proprietary patents argument. I WANT ONE!

  3. Shachar Weis Avatar
    Shachar Weis

    I kidna dig this but I couldn’t find a price on the consumables. Anyone knows how much is a pack of exposures?

    1. Kaouthia Avatar
      Kaouthia

      The film’s already available and in the Impossible Project store. £17.00 for black & white, add £0.50 for colour, and they have bundles for multiple packs with a little discount. US prices seem to be around $25 a pack.

      https://uk.impossible-project.com/collections/film-for-polaroid-600-cameras