If there is anything out there that is easy to lust after, it’s the Polaroid 600SE. I mean, what’s not to love? They’re rangefinder cameras that have sharp glass and can take various film formats? More importantly, the camera is heavily supported by the hacked and modding community. And you can take the dive in with this simple Polaroid 600SE available at the Rare Camera Store.
Welcome to the Rare Camera Store: a joint initiative of The Phoblographer and the wonderful folks at Blue Moon Camera. We work to bring you some of the coolest and rarest items for a great price.
The Phoblographer partners up with Blue Moon Camera for the Rare Camera Store initiative. Our philosophy is simple: you wouldn’t get a Wagyu beef steak review from a lifelong vegetarian. And you wouldn’t get photography advice from folks who don’t touch the product. Sometimes you can’t trust eBay. But we trust Blue Moon for sure! Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
The Awesome Polaroid 600SE
The Polaroid 600SE is one of those truly awesome cameras. It’s very closely related to the Mamiya Press camera, and therefore it’s very versatile. It can take a variety of camera backs. And over the years, there are tons of hacks that have come about. The listing at Blue Moon Camera for $500 says:
“This Polaroid 600 SE (serial number MAM8020B) camera kit comes with the Polaroid 600 SE body, a Mamiya 127mm f4.7 lens, and a Polaroid film back.
The cable release is missing its thread and is therefore useless.”
Otherwise, they note it’s in incredible condition. If you already have Pack film in our fridge, this is the perfect camera to use it with. But if you don’t, then you can try to get some of the other camera backs available for this camera. There are roll film backs, large format backs, and even Instax Square backs! You can see a lot of those right here.
Best of all, there are interchangeable lenses. The lens selection isn’t as large as some other camera systems. But the special sauce here is that you can use a ton of different film formats. What’s more, you can get manual control. Why not try to shoot Instax Wide or Square with this camera? I mean, Instax Mini is more or less the 645 format. This one camera can cover all of those formats pretty effortlessly.
Fun Facts about the Polaroid 600SE
Here are some great, fun tidbits about the Polaroid 600SE:
- There’s a Flickr group dedicated to this camera and all it can do. A search shows lots of expired film scans. Of course, this is all just part of the lo-fi world and the charm of using these cameras. But with the right film back, these things are absolute beasts. You probably may never need another medium format or instant film camera again.
- The Polaroid 600SE has been called the best Instant Film camera ever made. With an aluminum body, manual adjustments, rangefinder, and versatility, it’s easy to see why this is the case.
- The Polaroid 600SE and the Mamiya Universal/Press Camera are very similar. The Polaroid camera was actually based off the Mamiya’s. But they’re not totally interchangeable. Some folks prefer the Mamiya variant. But in recent years, I’ve read about folks liking the Polaroid version more.
- Lots of folks like the Mamiya RB67 for the fact that it can use various film formats. But if you want something far lighter, the Polaroid 600SE is the way to go. Mamiya gets very, very heavy after a while. And you really need the right strap with a camera like that. Trust me, I used to own one.