Meet I-1, the Impossible camera

The Impossible Project is a company that started in 2008 nearly immediately after Polaroid announced that they would cease production of instant film. Later that same year, the founders bought Polaroid’s film production equipment for $3.1 million and leased a portion of Polaroid’s production plant. Impossible quickly established itself, for all intents and purposes, as Polaroid Part II.

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Impossible film is indistinguishable from Polaroid film because it essentially is Polaroid film. Same machines, same process.

Just earlier this week, Impossible announced their next step toward complete revitalization of the instant photography market, the Impossible I-1: An instant camera capable of connecting to your smartphone. It’s the instant camera for today’s generation.

On the surface, the camera functions a lot like Polaroid’s more recent instant cameras. A light sensor inside controls the flash, and on the outside you have a generic focus ring (essentially lets you choose between macro and normal) and a shutter button. That’s in. It captures the simplicity that made instant photography so iconic.

You can take the experience one step further by connecting your smartphone, allowing you to have more precise control over your focus and flash, as well as using your phone as a remote shutter (perfect for self portraits).

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As long as you keep one hand out of frame, you can use your iPhone to snap photos of yourself remotely.

In the age of Instagram and instant photo sharing, one has to wonder if there’s any room in the market for an instant camera. Especially one that is expected to cost $300. I purchased two fully functioning Polaroid instant cameras from Goodwill, one was $5 and the other was $15. I use Impossible film in both, which I can use the $285 I saved to purchase. But I suppose only time will tell if the world is ready to step back into the era of analog.

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