Le Polaroid 600

Review: Polaroid 600



The “OneStep 600”, “Pronto 600”, “SuperColor 600” Polaroids… these cameras have different names, but all bear the number 600. They have in common that they were the first models manufactured by Polaroid and are not the most successful instant cameras produced by the brand. Let’s see what they lack and why it is best to look for more advanced models.

The Polaroid 600 is a very simple model, unfortunately it lacks some of the key features of the brand’s vintage devices.

A flash-less model…

First of all, the camera doesn’t have a built-in flash. This means that you cannot shoot indoors. In low lights and in any situation with insufficient light, the camera will adjust itself to an exposure time that is too long and will result in blurry or dark pictures. The Polaroid 600 is intended for outdoor use (only on sunny days). However, the camera can also be fitted with an external flash, which plugs into the flap that covers the front panel when it is raised.

When closed, the Polaroid 600 is a little more compact than models which have an integrated flash. The Polaroid 600 can receive an external flash that attaches in the slot shown in this photo.

When closed, the Polaroid 600 is a little more compact than models which have an integrated flash. The Polaroid 600 can receive an external flash that attaches in the slot shown in this photo.

…that has no auto-focus neither…

The “OneStep 600”, “Pronto 600”, “SuperColor 600” models don’t have an advanced focusing system. There are no sonar or manual adjustment capabilities on these models. You will have to find the optimal focusing distance on your own.
Unfortunately, there are no optional plastic lenses for close-up shots, like the ones available on the Polaroid 635 CL. All pictures taken a little too close will produce a nasty blur and cause a lot of annoyance.
Oh, really? There are no interesting functions on this device? Wait, if we look carefully we can tell you about the Lighten/Darken wheel… Already present on the very first Polaroid models, the wheel allows you to adjust the exposure of your image to correct the shot after a first try.
Definitely a good point but it may not be enough to compensate for the missing key functions mentioned above. Today, these capabilities are so important when looking for a camera. You’re probably not only looking for a camera that looks good but also one that can take quality photos.

From behind, the device’s design hasn’t evolved much over time. This is true for all 600-type devices produced later.

From behind, the device’s design hasn’t evolved much over time. This is true for all 600-type devices produced later.

… and doesn’t have much to offer besides its historical value

As you can tell, this model does not stand out in the Polaroids 600 series, except that it is one of the first model in the 600 series. Punished by its failure to provide several crucial functions that benefited the next generations of Polaroids, the Polaroid 600 is not the best choice for instant photography. This camera is of little interest if you are not an experienced collector.
Even if you can find “OneStep 600”, “Pronto 600”, “SuperColor 600” models at a low price, you should add a few more euros to get a more advanced model which will broaden your field of possibilities.