a girl taking photo with a disposable camera

A Beginner’s Guide to Disposable Camera: What, Why | How to Choose One

In this digital age, disposable cameras have become a nostalgic reminder of simpler times. While they may seem outdated to some, disposable cameras still have their purpose and can be a lot of fun. This article will discuss what disposable cameras are, why you might want to use one, and how to choose the right one for your needs.

What is a Disposable Camera?

A disposable camera is a type of camera that comes with a preloaded film roll and is designed to be used only once. The disposable film roll typically contains 24 or 27 exposures and can be processed at any photo lab. After the film is developed, the entire camera is typically thrown away.

disposable camera

Photo by bady abbas on Unsplash

Event photographers often use disposable cameras as they are a convenient and easy-to-use option for capturing high-quality photos. They are also popular with amateur photographers and travelers, as they are relatively inexpensive and offer a hassle-free way to take pictures.

Why Use Disposable Camera?

If you're new to photography or want to try something different, a disposable camera can be a great way to start.

  • Some of them are waterproof, like the Quick Snap Waterproof 35mm Camera 800, which is great for water photography if you don't want to use your phone.
  • They are relatively inexpensive, so they are a good option for people who don't want to invest in a more expensive camera.
  • They are easy to use, so even people unfamiliar with photography can get good results.

a girl taking photo with disposable camera

Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash
  • Disposable cameras are small and compact, making them easy to carry around. As a result, they offer a convenient way to take pictures when you are on the go.
  • They don't need to be charged; you can use them for hiking or mountain climbing.

How to choose a Disposable Camera?

When choosing a disposable camera, you should keep a few things in mind.

1. Film speed.

This is an important factor to consider. The higher the film speed, the more light is needed to produce a good image. If you plan to take pictures in low-light conditions, such as indoors or at night, you will need a camera with a high film speed.

2. The number of exposures.

Most disposable cameras come with 24 or 27 exposures. If you want to take more pictures, you can choose a camera with more exposure.

3. Price.

Disposable cameras vary in price, depending on the brand and the features. You can find some very affordable options if you are on a budget.

disposable camera

Photo by bady abbas on Unsplash

4. Aperture.

The aperture is the opening in the lens that allows light to pass through. The larger the aperture, the more light can pass through; this is important if you are taking pictures in low-light conditions.

5. Flash. 

Many disposable cameras come with a built-in flash. If you plan on taking pictures in low-light conditions, or if you want to be able to take pictures of fast-moving objects, you will need a camera with a flash.

6. Waterproof.

Some disposable cameras are waterproof, which is ideal if you plan on taking pictures near water.

7. Shutter speed.

The shutter speed is the time the camera's shutter is open. A faster shutter speed means less light is needed to produce a good image. If you plan to take pictures in low-light conditions, you will need a camera with a slow shutter speed.

8. Film type.

Disposable cameras come with different types of film. Color film is the most common, but you can also find black and white film, sepia film, or colored film.

Step-by-step Guide to Reload the Disposable Film Camera

Step 1

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Once you've decided on the perfect disposable camera for your needs, it's time to start. Here is a step-by-step guide to reloading your camera: Take your prime tool of choice, in this case, a plastic card, and start opening the tabs on the sides.

Step 2

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Once you've opened both sides, move to the bottom of the camera. Please do not force it too hard. These are just plastic taps and don't require much force. The small tap at the top is a little delicate, so to protect it, open the camera from the bottom. You can go ahead and remove this little plastic protecting tab.

Step 3

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

You can remove the film spool and the film roll from the camera. Reset the shot counter before loading the film roll. So you have to unlock this gear and reset it to the number of exposures you use. Lock it back in place, and it should be good to go. It should give you an accurate count of the shots.

Step 4

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Grab your brand new film roll and ensure the holes line up properly with the teeth of the film spool. Once you insert it properly and it's secured, you can start rolling up the film from the film roll into the film spool.

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Now you can slide it into the camera, ensure it lines up properly, and hold it in place. Ensure the gears of the film roll line up with the gears inside the camera. You should see the strips line up with the actual gears in the camera, making the film move from side to side.

Step  5

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Insert a toothpick, remember, it will release the winding gear, allowing it to spin backward, allowing us to use the screwdriver to complete the process. Turn the screwdriver counterclockwise, winding the film from the roll onto the film spool. You will also hear clicking sounds and feel some minor resistance, which is normal. When the process is completed, you won't be able to turn the screwdriver anymore, so don't force it.

Step 6

step-by-step guide for reloading films

Image Source: youtube.com

Now remove the toothpick, wind up the film, and you should be ready. The last thing we'll do is grab some black electrical tape and seal the camera on the edges to prevent any light leaks and ensure that it seals properly.

10 Best Disposable Film Camera in 2022

1. Fujifilm Quick Snap Waterproof

Fujifilm Quick Snap Waterproof

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Water resistance: 17 ft
  • Weight: 7.4 ounces
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Viewfinder: Direct vision
  • Film: 800 film

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Built-in flash

Cons

  • Some prints are blurry.

2. Ilford HP5 Plus Disposable Camera

Ilford HP5 Plus Disposable Camera

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Weight: 4.6 ounces
  • Shutter speed 1/100 seconds
  • ISO: 400
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Film Format: 35mm

Pros

  • Great at a black and white film
  • performs admirably in broad sunshine
  • The contrast is fantastic.
  • Built-in flash

Cons

  • Sometimes the flash will work.
  • It may have inconsistencies in image quality.
  • Not waterproof

3. Kodak Fun Saver

Kodak Fun Saver

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Type: Single-use
  • Film format: 35mm
  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Lens: 30mm f/10
  • Viewfinder: Direct vision

Pros

  • Has a large number of exposures
  • Simple to process

Cons

  • The flash must be charged.

4. Lomography Simple Use

Lomography Simple Use

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Film Format: 35mm Film
  • Aperture: f/9
  • Lens Focal Length: 31mm
  • Exposures: 36
  • Shutter Speed: 1/120s

Pros

  • Lightweight and small
  • You may change the film
  • In certain circumstances, gels are used on the flash.
  • Point and shoot to operate.

Cons

  • Badly slips off the edges
  • Reloading is difficult.
  • More expensive than ordinary disposable

5. Ilford XP2 Super Single-Use

Ilford XP2 Super Single-Use

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Type: Single-use
  • Film format: 35mm
  • Lens: 30mm f/9.5
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Film type: Black & white

Pros

  • Integrated flash
  • Built-in flash
  • Stunning, contrasty appearance

Cons

  • A challenging picture to adjust to
  • After prolonged use, the flash may cease to function.

6. Lomography Simple Use Reloadable Ox

Lomography Simple Use Reloadable Ox

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Film type: Color
  • ISO: 400
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Weight: 3.52 ounces

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Flash can be colored in color

Cons

  • Finding a photo studio might be difficult.

7. Fujifilm QuickSnap Flash

Fujifilm QuickSnap Flash

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Film type: Color
  • ISO: 400
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Type: Single-use
  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Lens: 32mm f/10Pros

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Very straightforward process
  • Flash range of 0 feet

Cons

  • Simple operation
  • Multipacks offer better value.
  • Images can develop incorrectly, with few vertical lines.

8. Agfa LeBox Ocean

Agfa LeBox Ocean

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • ISO: 400
  • Type: Single-use
  • Film format: 35mm
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Film type: Color
  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Viewfinder: Direct vision and sports finder

Pros

  • Excellent for snorkeling.
  • It's also sand-proofed.

Cons

  • Waterproofing is limited to 3m.
  • There is no flash.

9. Kodak Professional Tri-X

Kodak Professional Tri-X

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Type: Single-use
  • Modes: Auto
  • Number of exposures: 27
  • Film type: Black & white
  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Lens: 30mm f/10
  • Viewfinder: Direct vision

Pros

  • The flash is bright
  • A stylish black-and-white flick

Cons

  • Some people may dislike the contrasty appearance
  • Only in black and white

10. Agfa Photo 601020

Agfa Photo 601020

Image Credit: amazon.com

Specifications

  • Viewfinder: Direct vision
  • Type: Single-use
  • ISO speed: ISO400
  • Film format: 35mm
  • Modes: Auto
  • Film type: Color
  • Number of exposures: 27

Pros

  • Flash has a range of 4m
  • Simple to use

Cons

  • There is no waterproofing.
  • ISO400 means you will use it for outdoor photography.

Conclusion

That's all there is to it, a beginner's guide to disposable cameras. We hope this has helped demystify the process of choosing and using a disposable camera. Whether you're looking to capture some special moments on vacation or want to experiment with disposable film, we think disposables are a great option. So go out and give them a try.

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