Instructables

Bring Your Polaroid I-Zone Camera Back From the Dead

It was Polaroid's last gasp before its bankruptcy.  In 1999, Polaroid introduced an integral film camera that gave you a tiny photo almost the same size of a 35mm negative. It was a big hit for the "on-the-go" teens for whom this camera was heavily marketed.  In fact, the I-Zone probably single handedly kept Polaroid out of Chapter 11 for a few extra years.

However, the on-the-go teens got up and left....not taking their I-Zones with them.  They moved on to greener and more digital pastures.  Polaroid abandoned the I-Zone camera and I-Zone film in 2006.  SInce then, these inovative cameras drifted into junk drawers and thrift shops all across the world.  


The current state of the I-Zone:

1.  Camera and film has been discontinued.

2.  Legacy film has gone bad in the classic integral film way...dried up developing goop.

3.  I-Zone.com forwards directly to the new Polaroid.com where you find very little information on the I-Zone camera.

4.  The camera is easily bought used at thrift shops and auction sites and even new from Amazon (the non-availability of the film is glossed over).

5.  Fuiji and Impossible Project folks have not indicated that they will take up the I-Zone film banner.  This leaves your I-Zone in paperweight mode permanently.....or has it?

In this Instructable we will attempt to get your I-Zone camera off its lazy butt and start making exposures again by converting it to use APS photographic film.

Is it worth it?  Probably not, but I never have let that stop me before!
 
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if i don't have a Empty I-Zone film cartridge what can i use?
Nano_Burger (author)  kikitikivanrankin2 years ago
An empty one is the preferred method. I have plenty. I can send you one if you e-mail me your address.

I know this is a long shot... but you don't happen to have any cartiges left?

I'm too far in Mexico, I'm gonna try with a plastic little box, what do you think?
Cheese41 year ago
Hey! Could you whip up a vid on how to do this? Thanks
I know this post was a while ago, but is it possible that you have 1 more empty cartridge to send to me?
itsme5062 years ago
Confused! Theres no sub for this film but you are chatting about using APS for it? Excited at the prospect that I could use this izone again. Any chance i could be run through exactly the process? Thanks
Nano_Burger (author)  itsme5062 years ago
I've tried my best to document the process here in this instructable. APS film however is on its way out. Production was stopped in 2011. I've been kicking around the idea of modifying the iZone for 35mm film or at least being able to slit 35mm unperf film down to that size.

Anyway, if you need any help with your project, let me know. I'd be more than willing to help.
I could use one of those empty cartridges if you wouldn't mind sending me one! Where can I email you my address?
McGrep3 years ago
Finally, I can make my i-Zone useful again. I recently found it in my attic, dismayed at the golden-brown film I had left over. Thankfully, I kept an empty cartridge. As soon as I get some APS film, I'll try this.
Nano_Burger (author)  McGrep3 years ago
It is a lot of fun. Make sure when you get your film processed, you tell them to develop only. Or not, their computer will have a tough time figuring out where the images are though. I just scan at home where a human is in charge.
Right, gotcha. I have a nice flatbed and was considering just scanning my negatives. Whenever I bring a 35mm roll from my Holga to get developed, I ask for a CD and it's always incompatible with my computer (always works on all the others...). Just getting the negatives would be cheaper and easier I guess.

Anyway, I've got some APS to find. I've never actually heard of it until recently, as I'm delving into film photography. Still gotta find an empty 124 cartridge for my Instamatic 104 for the 35mm conversion.
Darwinfish3 years ago
I had one of these, but when I ran out of film (and realized that there wasn't much I could do with postage-stamp sized photos) I just scrapped it for the flash circuitry. Great to see one put to good use. :-) Nice work!