We’ve spent hours testing the growing number of 21st century instant cameras now making waves and believe this experience has taught us a few things about these retro products. Here we compare two of the more popular ones on the market.
- More printer modes
- Includes self-timer
- Typically more expensive
- Limited capabilities
The Polaroid Snap burst onto the scene in 2015 hoping to convince a new generation of photographers to embrace the Polaroid name.
Iconic brand reborn
- Bigger aperture
- Slightly lighter
- Fewer color options
- Still, limited capabilities
The Kodak Printomatic is very similar to the Polaroid Snap, except that it comes will fewer features. It’s less expensive, however, so that might be what drives your purchase.
First introduced decades ago, instant cameras have made a comeback in the digital age. Not surprisingly, two of the biggest names in photography from back in the day are also making a return. Both the Snap and the Printomatic fill the need that the instant cameras from yesteryear used to, but which one is better?
Polaroid and Kodak long ago went bankrupt, allowing multiple companies to purchase brands and intellectual property from each. One company, C+A Global, owns licenses for the name and branding of each. Because of this, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that these products are strangely similar.
|Polaroid Snap||Kodak Printomatic|
|Weight||7.52 ounces||7.05 ounces|
|Dimensions||0.98 x 4.72 x 2.95 in||1 x 4.83 x 3.11 in|
|Size prints||2 x 3-inch||2 x 3-inch|
These products are more alike than different. Both feature a 10MP camera and use 2-by-3-inch ZINK Instant paper. This paper eliminates the need for costly film, ink, and toner and just uses heat to activate the colors inside. Each camera offers a built-in rechargeable Li-ion battery and, thanks to a built-in microSD port, allows you to save photos for later use. You can’t print out photos from those microSD cards, but 32GB of storage is a decent size.
The Polaroid Snap and Kodak Printomatic mainly differ when it comes to the number of picture modes. The former includes borderless normal, black and white, and vintage sepia tone, along with Polaroid border format in normal, black and white, and vintage sepia tone. The Kodak model only offers black & white and color modes. Also, the Polaroid camera is the only one that includes a self-timer for capturing selfies, and a photo booth feature that lets you take four quick photos every four seconds. Because of these extra features, we recommend the Polaroid Snap over the Kodak Printomatic.
The Kodak Printomatic has a slightly wider aperture, which means it’s more desirable in low-light situations. The difference is likely to be most noticeable if you’re saving images to the microSD card for later use. If you’re only planning to print photos on the fly with the tiny 2-by-3-inch ZINK Paper, the difference will be less noticeable. The Printomatic is also slightly cheaper, so if you want to save money (or are just a Kodak purist), it’s not a bad purchase. Just note that you’re getting a lot more for the money with the Snap.
Simple and easy to use
Our choice for a budget instant camera
The Polaroid Snap offers just enough extras to make it the one to buy versus the Kodak Printomatic. Paying a little bit more for these features is worth it.
Another fine choice
Not a Polaroid lover?
The Kodak Printomatic is a good choice if you’re looking to save a little bit of money. It too uses Zink paper so the end result will largely be the same.