Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay Review

September 20, 2019 | Amy Davies | Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


Announced in 2019, the Instax Mini LiPlay is the latest instant camera from Fujifilm. It pairs a digital camera with an inbuilt Instax Mini printer, and also introduces audio capture for the first time. You can also use the LiPlay to print images from your smartphone (or indeed any image file found on your smartphone), too.

The Instax LiPlay is the smallest and lightest hybrid instant camera in Fujifilm’s history, and is available in three different colours - Stone White, Elegant Black and Blush Gold (pink).

Inside the Fujifilm LiPlay is a 1/5-inch CMOS sensor which is capable of producing digital images of 2560x1920 pixels. The fixed lens offers a 28mm equivalent focal length, with an f/2 lens. Using the camera is pretty much entirely automatic, with a number of different effects which can be utilised for those who would like to get a bit creative.

The camera uses Instax Mini film, which is available to buy in a couple of different varieties, including with a traditional white frame, or with various different fun colours, such as rainbow, “shiny stay”, and “candy pop”. At the time of writing, a single pack of 10 Instax shots will set you back £9.93, but you can usually pick it up a little bit cheaper if you buy in bulk.

The Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay camera costs around £150 / £150.

Ease of Use

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
The Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay In-hand

The Instax Mini LiPlay uses a fun design which is designed to be attractive to the target audience. With nicely rounded curves and three different stylish colourways, we can see it being popular particularly with a younger audience.

Being the smallest instant camera in Instax history, the Instax LiPlay is more transportable than many of the other cameras in the brand’s back-catalogue. It’s not quite pocket-friendly though, so you will need a small bag to store it in.

Designed to be as user-friendly as possible, learning how to use the Instax Mini LiPlay shouldn’t be too complicated. The camera is primarily designed to be used in portrait-format orientation, so that when the Instax prints are revealed, the larger part of the frame will be at the bottom.

You can choose to ignore this and shoot in landscape orientation if you prefer though, of course. As such, the text on the camera will be the “correct” way up only when holding the LiPlay in this orientation.

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
Front of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

On the front of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay, you’ll find the lens, which is surrounded by a textured frame. Inside the frame you’ll see the flash, which can be switched on or off from the menu.

There’s also a small mirror which you can use to help you accurately line up selfies.

An intriguing button is found towards the bottom of the Instax LiPlay - it has a microphone symbol on it. This is one of the unique functions of the LiPlay - if you press this before taking a photo, you’ll activate a microphone which will record up to 10 seconds of audio before and after you take a shot.

You can then listen to the sound in playback, or quirkily by scanning a QR code which you can include on your Instax prints.

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
Rear of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

The shutter release button is also found on the front of the Instax LiPlay, which feels slightly strange in use for those who are used to finding buttons in the more traditional place (on top of the camera).

Although awkward at first, you do eventually get used to using it. The button itself is square, which helps you to differentiate it by feel to the audio button, which is round in shape.

You’ll find the power button on the side of the camera. On the same side are three buttons which are labelled 1, 2 and 3. Press each of these to automatically activate frames for your pictures - you can choose different frames to assign to these buttons by using the LiPlay smartphone app (which we’ll come onto later).

Also on the same side of the Instax LiPlay is a slot for inserting a microSD card. The LiPlay comes with an inbuilt memory which can store approximately 45 images, while up to 850 images can be stored per 1GB of memory on a Micro SD card - so it’s worth investing in one of those unless you want to frequently delete your images.

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
The Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay In-hand

Flipping to the back of the Instax Mini LiPlay and you’ll see that again it’s quite a simple set-up here. There’s a small, 2.7-inch 230k-dot LCD screen, which doubles up as the screen door for the film slot. Slide across a switch to open the film door when you want to insert a new pack of Instax film.

Instax film is incredibly simple to use - all you need to do is line up the small yellow line on the Instax film with the same yellow line on the camera and close the door when it’s in place. Be careful not to accidentally open the film door once you start using the film though, as you’ll risk exposing and ruining the film.

When the Instax LiPlay is on, you’ll see some helpful information on the screen. A dotted display at the screen shows how many prints you’ve got left in your film pack. You’ll see the navigation guide displayed on the screen, which is controlled by a four way navigational dial just underneath it.

Pressing the up key adds a frame, the down key adds a digital filter, the left key activates a self timer (two seconds or ten seconds), while the right key lets you switch the flash between auto, forced (always on), or suppressed (always off).

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
The Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay Printing

As well as the navipad, underneath the screen, there’s a menu button, a back button, a playback button and a print button.

The menu features a number of different settings which you can change, including switching the AF illuminator on or off (you might wish to switch it off if you’re trying to shoot somewhere discreetly), exposure (the only form of manual control supplied), print settings, bluetooth settings, date and time and so on.

If you press the playback button, you’ll be able to scroll through the images you’ve taken. By pressing the up directional key you’ll be able to add frames to your images before you print them.

Press the print button when you’re ready to print one of your shots - if you’ve recorded any sound then you’ll be given the option to print it with or without the QR code for scanning with your mobile phone.

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
The Instax Print

At the bottom of the Fuji Instax Mini LiPlay is a micro USB port, which you can use to charge up the camera. The flash on the front of the camera will light up to let you know it’s charging, switching off when it’s complete.

To charge to its full capacity can take up to three hours, but once it is charged, the camera is able to print up to 100 images from a single charge. Of course, if you’re using it to take pictures as well, the power will run out sooner.

The Instax Mini LiPlay is designed to work with a companion smartphone app, which is available to download for free. You can connect to the LiPlay via Bluetooth, and for the most part it connects quickly and seems to remain stable once the initial connection and setup has been completed.

From the app you can perform a number of useful functions, including taking remote control of the camera (useful for selfies and group shots). You can also play back the sounds you’ve “printed” here too.

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay
A Scan of the Instax Print

Most useful is the “direct print” option, which allows you to print any image which you have stored on your phone. This effectively turns the LiPlay into a portable Instax Mini printer, and is a great way to use to print better photos than the onboard camera is capable of capturing.

This also marks it as a point of different from the Instax SQ10, which only allowed you to print photos captured by the camera itself.

Once an image has been printed out, you’ll need to allow some time for the Instax film to develop - in other words, don’t be alarmed when it pops out completely white. After a few minutes, the colours should have fully rendered.

The print slot is found at the top of the Instax Mini LiPlay, so make sure it is unobstructed when you press the print button. A nice quirk is that the camera display will show a graphic of the print coming out from the screen.

Image Quality

Instax printing is never about superb image quality, but rather the fun and quirky aspect of printing out your shots on instant film. Some Instax cameras are analogue, but one of the big benefits of using the LiPlay’s digital camera is that you can preview your shots before printing them - so you don’t accidentally print out a dud and waste precious film.

Put bluntly, the onboard camera on the Instax Mini LiPlay is nothing to write home about. It’s almost like using a camera from 10-15 years ago, boasting a low resolution and lacking detail. In bright conditions, the shots that it can produce are fine for the small size of an Instax print, though. In darker conditions, the camera struggles to focus (even with the AF assist light switched on), and using the flash is a definite requirement, too.

It’s best to view the digital versions of the photos as just a guide to let you know what you should bother to print. They don’t stand up on their own when viewed on a computer screen, and certainly aren’t ones you’re likely to want to keep or use for any other purpose than for printing in the small Instax size.

As for the prints themselves, they’re nicely saturated and give a good impression of detail thanks to their small size. They’re fun enough for souvenirs and keepsakes, particularly if you use the camera at a special event such as a party, special trip or a wedding and so on. It’s also something you might consider a good present for children, or anybody who might not be in possession of even the most basic smartphone, which in 2019 is likely to surpass the image quality of the LiPlay’s camera.

The good news here is that you can use the LiPlay as a printer, as well as a camera. That means that in theory you could completely ignore the camera aspect and use the device to print much better photos from your smartphone, or even dedicated camera.

Example Scanned Prints

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay camera, which were all taken using the 4.9 megapixel JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Product Images

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay

Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay


There is a lot to like about the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay, depending on your opinion of the Instax brand as a whole. At around £150, it’s perhaps slightly too expensive to be considered an “impulse purchase”, but it’s still cheap enough to be appealing to those who are fans of this kind of thing.

Sadly, the biggest let down for the LiPlay is the quality of the onboard camera. While it produces shots which are just about adequate for the Instax mini print size, as digital files they leave a lot to be desired. I’ve found it’s best if you almost ignore that the digital files exist, and only use them in order to decide whether or not you want to print a shot. Alternatively, for kids or anybody without a smartphone or dedicated camera, it might also be appealing.

Having the ability to record and “print” sound is a bit of an intriguing quirk, but it’s pretty much just a gimmick that you’ll probably ignore after the first couple of attempts. After all, if you wanted to create a picture with a sound - wouldn’t you just record a video on your phone? Again, for kids or those without a phone, it’s likely to be more appealing than otherwise.

The best news is that the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay can be used as an Instax Mini printer, which for most people in possession of a half-decent smartphone, will be the preferable way of using the LiPlay. However, if you’re going to do that, you could dispense with the camera altogether and purchase an Instax Share SP-2 printer, which at £99.99 will save you £50 off the price of the Instax LiPlay. On the plus side, the LiPlay brings the benefit of Bluetooth connectivity, which is a little more reliable than the Wi-Fi found on the Share SP-2.

That moves us neatly on to the cost of prints. At around £10 for a pack of 10 shots, printing Instax is never going to be the cheapest hobby in the world. While the resulting prints are lots of fun, you do have to think before you press print - “is this shot really worth £1?”. Still, the LiPlay producing digital files means at least you won’t waste that expensive film with under/over exposed photos, blurred shots or those that have been framed poorly.

Overall, the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay is a fun and quirky addition to the Instax range, but its best function is as a printer. The inbuilt digital camera produces shots which are just about OK for the purpose of printing to Instax, but otherwise you’re better off shooting with a normal phone or camera if you want to keep them as digital files. The best audience for this model is young people and children who will likely be drawn in by its fun nature, and not be so bothered about the lower quality of the digital files.

3.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 3.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 3
Value for money 3.5

Main Rivals

Listed below are some of the rivals of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay.

Fujifilm Instax Square SQ20

The Fujifilm Instax Square SQ20 is a hybrid instant camera that takes digital pictures and makes instant prints. Does it offer the best of both the digital and analog worlds? Read our in-depth Fujifilm Instax Square SQ20 review to find out...

Leica Sofort

The brand new Leica Sofort is the German manufacturer's first ever instant film camera. Entering a market dominated by Fujifilm, the Sofort (German for "instant") can take both colour and black & white pictures, and features a small mirror for easier selfies. Read the World's first Leica Sofort review now to find out what it offers...

Lomo Instant

Born out of a successful Kickstarter campaign, the Lomo Instant is the most advanced instant camera on the planet. Using the widely available Fujifilm Instax Mini film, the Lomo Instant offers advanced features like manual aperture control, a built-in flash, and a bulb mode for long exposures. Read our Lomo Instant review now...

Lomo Instant Wide

The new Lomo Instant Wide uses Fuji Instax Wide film, which is twice as wide as Instax Mini film. The Lomo Instant Wide offers advanced features like three different shooting modes,a fully programmatic shutter, a built-in flash, and unlimited multiple exposures. Read our Lomo Instant Wide review now...

Lomo'Instant Automat Glass

As its name suggests, the new Lomo'Instant Automat Glass is a fully automatic instant camera with a glass lens. Read our Lomo'Instant Automat Glass review now to find out it delivers the best image quality from an instant film camera ...

Lomo'Instant Automat

The new Lomo'Instant Automat is a fully automatic instant camera that promises to take perfectly lit mini shots, anytime. Does it succeed? Find out by reading our Lomo'Instant Automat review now...

Lomo'Instant Square

The new Lomo'Instant Square is a fully automatic instant camera that's the first ever analog model to use the square Instax film format. You can also use Instax Mini film by changing the camera back, increasing its versatility. Is this the best instant camera on the market? Find out by reading our Lomo'Instant Square review now...

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay from around the web.

wired.com »

DESPITE THE NAYSAYERS, print film refuses to die. Kodak resurrected one of it's most popular films, Ektachrome, and Fujifilm has announced it will bring back Acros 100, a popular black-and-white film. It's not just pros and artists that crave real-world prints though; instant-print cameras and printers have been piling up on our desk all year. Smaller Zink cameras and printers are among them, and they're nipping at Fujifilm's heels.
Read the full review »

trustedreviews.com »

Fuji's smallest, lightest instant camera ever is more of a digital camera with a built-in printer, albeit one that still uses Instax format film. You compose with an LCD screen, not a viewfinder, and if your shots don't look too hot you don't have to print them, which is less wasteful - if not quite as charming as a true instant camera. The digital versions it saves aren't particularly detailed or high quality, but audio recordings add extra novelty, and its smartphone companion app is second-to-none. No other Instax can slip into a pocket like the LiPlay can, and it's reasonably priced too. It's not perfect, but it is the best hybrid around right now.
Read the full review »

thephoblographer.com »

When I first heard the rumors of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay, I admittedly groaned. In my opinion, the company’s last attempt at fusing digital and analog together was subpar. But with their second attempt in the form of the Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay, I’m pleasantly surprised and shocked. This is THE SMALLEST INSTAX FILM CAMERA. And not only is it small, but it reminds me of a suped-up compact camera from yesteryear while it also embraces lots of new fashionista influences. The Fujifilm Instax Mini LiPlay is going to appeal to so many different types of photographers.
Read the full review »


Image sensor 1/5-in. CMOS with primary color filter
Effective pixels 2560 x 1920
Storage media Built-in memory, micro SD / micro SDHC memory card (purchased separately)
Recording capacity
Built-in memory: approx. 45 files, micro SD / micro SDHC memory card: approx. 850 files per 1 gigabyte (without sound)
File system Compliant with Design rule for Camera File system (DCF), Exif Ver. 2.3
Focal length 28 mm (35-mm film equivalent)
Aperture F2.0
Auto focus system Single AF (equipped with AF auxiliary illuminator)
Focus range 10 cm to ∞
Shutter speed 1/4 sec. to 1/8000 sec. (auto)
Sensitivity ISO 100 to 1600 (auto)
Exposure control Programmed AE
Exposure compensation -2.0 EV to +2.0 EV (in increments of 1/3 EV)
Metering 256-segment through the lens (TTL) metering, multi-metering
White balance Auto
Flash Auto / Compulsory flash / Suppressed flash
Effective range: approx. 50 cm to 1.5 m
Self timer Approx. 10 sec. / Approx. 2 sec.
Image effects frame and filter
Voice recording Recordable and overwritable during image capture and playback per 1 image

Printer Specifications

Film FUJIFILM Instant Film instax mini (purchased separately)
Photo capacity 10 prints per pack
Film size 86 mm x 54 mm
Image size 62 mm x 46 mm
Supported image size 800 x 600 dots
Printing solution 12.5 dots per mm (318 dpi, 80-µm dot pitch)
Printing levels 256 levels per color (RGB)
Supported image format JPEG images captured with the device
Printing time Approx. 12 sec.
Print function Images on built-in memory / micro SD are printable

Reprint up to the last 50 prints
(up to 50 images stored in print history)

Other Specifications

Smartphone app
Voice playback from print, smartphone image print, remote image capture, frame addition
LCD monitor 2.7-in. TFT color LCD monitor, Pixels: approx. 230K dots
External interface Micro USB Micro-B (for charging only)
Power supply Lithium-ion battery (built-in, cannot be removed)
Charging function Built-in
Printing capacity Approx. 100 prints (when battery is fully charged)
* Varies depending on the conditions of use.
Charging time Approx. 2 to 3 hrs.
* Varies depending on air temperature.
Dimensions 82.5 mm x 122.9 mm x 36.7 mm (excluding protrusions)
Weight Approx. 255 g (excluding fiim pack and memory card)
Operating environment Temperature: 5℃ to 40℃
Humidity: 20% to 80% (no condensation)


The instax mini LiPlay [“Lee-Play”] is a new-generation hybrid instant camera that's packed with new, unique and exciting features. This includes a unique new “Sound” function which allows you to play a voice message or personalised audio through a unique QR code that's embedded in the instant instax mini print.

The instax mini LiPlay will be available from 14th June 2019 priced at £149.99 and comes in three unique colours - Stone White, Elegant Black and Blush Gold.

Fujifilm UK Press Release


Brand new hybrid technology will allow users to capture memories with an audio message embedded into their instax mini print

Today, instax launches its highly anticipated instant camera “instax mini LiPlay” [“Lee-Play”], a new-generation hybrid instant camera, packed with new, unique and exciting features.

The smallest and most lightweight hybrid instant camera in the brand’s history, the instax mini LiPlay’s unique innovations make capturing and creating real photos of special life moments more creative and fun than ever before.

The new instant camera from instax includes:

  • “Sound” function: users can use the unique new “Sound” function to play a voice message or personalised audio through a unique QR code embedded in the instant instax mini print. 
  • “Direct Print” function: Images stored in a smartphone can be transferred to the camera via Bluetooth* for printing and printed out on the go.
  • Frame Designs: With ten pre-installed design frames included with the instax mini LiPlay, and an additional library of 20 available through the instax mini LiPlay app, there are up to 30 fun frame designs that can be added to prints, providing snapchat-like** filters in an instant world.
  • Remote Shooting” function – Take photos while standing away from your camera with a smartphone operation, perfect for capturing group photos with friends and family.

The camera body boasts a compact, streamlined and stylish design, with its lightweight casing making it easy to carry on the go. It also features a 2.7-inch LCD monitor at the rear of the camera to allow you to choose your picture before pressing print. The camera also offers brightness adjustment and six filters to create the perfect picture before you hit print.

The instax mini LiPlay will be available from the 14th June 2019 at an SRP of £149.99 and comes in three unique colourways; Stone White, Elegant Black and Blush Gold.

Each of the three colour variants has an individual surface finish creating interesting texture details. The Elegant Black camera features an eye-catching embossed finish, while the Blush Gold version dazzles with a smooth lustrous touches and Stone White edition has a stone-like surface achieved with a unique spray coating.

Karina Thomsen, Head of Marketing, Photo Imaging, “We’re excited to bring this innovative product to the UK and finally reveal the instax mini LiPlay after much anticipation. The smallest and lightest hybrid instant camera within the instax series, instax mini LiPlay combines some of the best and most popular features from the instax family. We have added some exciting new innovative elements that will really allow people to capture their life in a fun, creative way. From a new sound function, to direct print from your smartphone.  We look forward to seeing everyone’s reactions and how the instax mini LiPlay will come to life.”

SPECIFICATIONS instax mini LiPlay

Image sensor

1/5 type CMOS primary color filter

Number of recorded pixels

2560 × 1920 pixels

Storage media

Internal memory,

micro SD/micro SDHC memory card

Storage capacity

Approximately 45 images in internal memory; approximately 850 images per 1 GB in micro SD/micro SDHC memory card

Recording method

DCF compliant Exif Ver 2.3

Focus distance

f = 28 mm (35 mm film equivalent)



Auto focus

Single AF (with AF Illuminator)

Shooting distance

10 cm and beyond

Shutter speed

1/4 second to 1/8000 second (automatic switching)

Shooting sensitivity

ISO100 to 1600 (automatic switching)

Exposure control

Program AE


−2.0 EV to +2.0 EV (1/3 EV step)

Metering method

TTL 256 split metering, multi metering

White balance



Auto Flash / Forced Flash/Suppressed Flash

Shooting range with flash: Approximately 50 cm to 1.5 m


Approximately 2 seconds / approximately 10 seconds

Image effects

6 Filters, 10 Frames (3 available with shortcuts)

Sound recording

Possible to record sound when shooting or playing back single image. 

Print specifications:

Film used

INSTAX Mini Instant Film (sold separately)

Number of films

10 films/pack

Film size

86 mm × 54 mm

Screen size

62 mm × 46 mm

Print pixel count

800 × 600 dots

Print resolution

12.5 dots / mm (318 dpi, 80 μm dot pitch)

Print gradation

RGB gradation of 256 colors

Other specifications:

Smartphone app linked functions

Sound Playback Function from printed images, Smartphone Image Print Function, Remote Shooting Function, Frame Selection Function

LCD monitor

2.7-inch TFT color LCD monitor

Pixel count: Approximately 230,000 dots

External interface

Micro USB Micro-B (for charging only)

Power supply

Lithium ion battery (internal type: not removable)

Charging function

Built-in battery

Possible number of printed images

Approximately 100 (from full charge)

(The number of prints depends on the usage conditions.)

Charging time

Approximately 2-3 hours

(Charging time depends on the temperature.)

Main unit dimensions

82.5 mm × 122.9 mm × 36.7 mm (excluding projecting parts)

Main unit weight

Approximately 255 g

Operating environment

Temperature: +5 ºC to +40 ºC (+41 ºF to +104 ºF)

Humidity: 20% to 80% (no condensation)

*The above specifications are subject to change for performance improvement.

instax has also announced, today, two new film products. The first a new metallic instax mini film “CONFETTI”, which will give prints a dazzling touch and is compatible with all cameras in the “instax mini” series. The second new film is the “Star-illumination” which is a design of the night sky with colourful stars scattered across the print and is compatible with all “instax SQUARE” series. Both new film products are available in 10 print packs.


The instax mini LiPlay is on sale in the UK from 14th June 2019 in Amazon, Jessops and Selfridges and will soon be available in Currys PC World, John Lewis and Urban Outfitters; with a suggested retail price of £149.99. instax SQUARE Instant Film ‘Star-Illumination’ (10 shots) will have a suggested retail price of £9.99 instax mini Instant Film ‘Confetti’ (10 shots) will have a suggested retail price of £8.99.

For more information, visit www.instax.co.uk

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