I grew up in the 80s and I am getting a real kick out how the 80s is the in thing right now. When it comes to cameras you really do not get much more 80s than a Polaroid instant camera. Unfortunately, Polaroid had to shut their doors in 2008, but a new company Polaroid Originals stepped in and brought the Polaroid Instant camera back!
The OneStep 2 Viewfinder was actually first released a couple of years back and people got a real kick out of this thing. Yes, it was bulky, but this is what people wanted from their Polaroid Instant camera.
Recently, Polaroid released another version of their popular camera, the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition and that is what we are looking at today. As soon as I heard the news about this camera, I knew I had to get one to try out. The last few weeks I have had a lot of fun with this camera and these are my thoughts.
What Is This Thing?
That is probably the million-dollar question when people hear about the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition. Before we get to that though we have to look at what the Polaroid OneStep 2 is in general.
This was actually the first Polaroid camera to be released in around a decade! The real appeal of it was that it looked just like the original did when it was released in 1977 and then all the way through the 80s! This is that camera, but with a Stranger Things tie in.
Built Like A Tank
When you first pick up the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition you are amazed at the size of this thing. It is rather heavy, bulky and it feels like it is very, very well built. They have managed to capture the old style of the original camera, but they have also managed to put some modern tech in here to make it an actual better camera.
The viewfinder is located on the left-hand side of the back of the camera. What I like about this is that it is a very nice size and you do not have to squint to look through it like you do some of the smaller instant cameras that are on the market right now.
One thing that is worth noting about the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition is that what you are looking at is not exactly what the camera is going to take a picture of. This is because the viewfinder is to the left of the actual lens. This is not a knock on this particular camera as most instant cameras are like this. It just takes a little while to get used to.
Look Through The Lens
The photos that I have taken so far have all been nice and clear, actually far better than I thought they would be, to be honest with you. The lens on the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition has a nice field of view, but it is designed to be at least 60 cm away from what you want to take a photo of.
For example, if you were to flip this beast around and try and take an 80s style selfie. If you had the camera too close to your face the image would more than likely be blurrier than you would like. It is not a big deal, but it is another thing on this camera that you will learn about through experience.
Features Of The Camera
Digital cameras these days have so many features on them that it can be rather overwhelming to get to grips with them all. With a camera like this, you do not have as much control like that, but there are some neat things you can do to help you get the best photo you possibly can.
On one side of the lens, you have an exposure switch. I am sure most folks will just leave this as it is. However, it can actually let you under or overexpose your photo. There is also the black light meter which again most people will not care about, but it is there if you want to make use of it.
The other side of the lens has more features for you to make use of. The first thing you notice is that nice big flash. The camera will always and I mean always use the flash unless you press the button on the back while you take your photo. There is also a timer which can come in handy if you want to be in a photo yourself and then there is the shutter release button as well.
On the very bottom of the camera is a tripod mount. I am not exactly sure who is going to be using a tripod with an instant camera, but the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Thing Edition does have the capacity to do so if you want to be a bit steadier with the photos you are taking.
Instead of using a ton of batteries as you would have in the 80s. This one has a USB charging port on the back. So, you can charge this up and you can easily get many hours of use (I think they are claiming around 8) out of the camera before you need to worry about charging it.
What Ties This Into Stranger Things?
Well, to start with the color scheme has been changed. The original version of the OneStep 2 has a white and black design to it. This version has a rather 80s looking blue, but that is not the only difference in the design. The coolest aspect of this is that all of the writing on the camera is upside down! If you are a fan of the show, you will get why they have done that and it is certainly the coolest aesthetical feature of the camera in my opinion.
As well as the camera, Polaroid has released special Stranger Things film. This is really cool as the border of the film has many different Stranger Things designs.
Using The Camera
Loading the film into the camera is nice and easy. You just flip open the section at the bottom and put in your film pack. Each film pack allows you to take eight photos and there is a handy light display on the top that lets you know how many photos you have taken.
While using the camera is very easy, the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition film (and actually the film for this kind of camera in general) does require that you store it properly and also it does have a 2 month shelf life once the film has been opened so do not just open all the packs as soon as you get them.
In all using the camera is a fun experience and while it does take a few minutes for a photo to fully develop. There is no denying that taking a photo and having the image start to appear “instantly” is just as cool in 2019 as it was all the way back in the late 70s and 80s when this camera was king.
While the camera is very easy to use and that is a huge part of the appeal of a camera like this. I would strongly suggest that you take the time to read up on how to properly store the film so that you can get the best photos possible.
How Much Does This Cost?
Ok, so it is important to note that this is a special edition camera and it is clearly aimed at Stranger Things fans and camera collectors. However, I feel that the $109.99 asking price for the camera is not bad at all. This is roughly the same price as the standard OneStep 2 instant camera. You can also get a starter pack for $157.99, which comes with three packs of film.
As was the case in the 80s it is the film that is really going to end up costing you a lot of money. A pack of film only allows you to take 8 photos and it costs, $16.99, which works out at about two bucks per photo. They are offering a three pack of film for $48 which does save you a couple of bucks. There are plenty of different Stranger Things designs on the borders so I would assume if you are paying the money for the camera that you would probably want all of the borders as well.
The Photo Quality
Clearly, your photos are not going to be as sharp as they are on a Kodak digital camera that costs 400 bucks. However, the photo quality was actually better than I thought it would be. I found that in really light situations, the sky sometimes had some “spots” but for the most part, the photos I was getting were of a decent enough quality.
I think that you have to be realistic with what you are getting here. I see it as more of a novelty than a camera that you want to take the most high-quality images with. Still, with that being said, the quality of the photos is certainly not bad.
Final Thoughts On The OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition
I love the design of the OneStep 2 Viewfinder I Type Camera Stranger Things Edition. I think it is a very clever tie into the show and if you are a fan of the Netflix show and also of taking photos then getting this is a no brainer. It is also really cool to actually use, especially if you used one of these back in the day as it is just like you remember it being.
The asking price for a special edition camera is more than fair in my opinion and I really do like how solid this thing feels. If you do not care about Stranger Things then, in all honesty, I am not sure I would make the effort to track it down, but at the same time, it is the same price as the standard version of this camera so if you ask me you might as well get the special edition!
I grew up in the 80s and I am getting a real kick out how the 80s is the in thing right now. When it comes to cameras you really do not get much more...