Polaroid SLR 680


Meet the evil twin of the Polaroid SX-70: the Polaroid SLR 680, a legend among the legends!

image from ricohmatic

It all started a year ago when I was looking around for a decent Polaroid camera to play around with. My friend actually got me interested in the famous SX-70 foldies, but at that point of time, the Time Zero films are already out of production and modifications have to be done to the SX-70 to shoot 600 films.

While I was researching on the internet about the SX-70s, i chance upon a website(can’t remember which already!) that introduced the SLR 680. What caught my eye is the similarities it has with the SX-70s and most importantly, it shoots 600 film natively! This would mean that I do not have to modify anything(and break anything) to shoot a Polaroid!

So i started hunting around for a decent SLR 680(or SLR 690) from my local used camera shops all the way to eBay! Well.. it took me 8 eBay auctions before I manage to get my hands on it. And thank goodness it works perfectly well(it was an AI-IS item).

The SLR 680 is similar to the SX-70 Sonar model, which featured a function sonar(the golden round thingy in the middle), which is capable of very accurately measure the distance between the Polaroid and the subject. (It probably only don’t work if u are cam-whoring yourself using a mirror). And the best part of the SLR 680 is, it has it’s own built-in flash, something that most SX-70 models do not have. The flash is pretty accurate as it will adjust the level of flash based on the distance that was read off the sonar, giving me a proper exposure for every shot.

My SLR 680 got me amazed by the types of shots that a Polaroid can produce. One of the effect that shocked me bad was the bokeh effect that it is capable of doing. I never knew that Polaroids can do it back then and when the shot came out, I was pretty amazed. It kinda made me love my SLR 680 more!

The other amazing effect that the SLR 680 can do, is a short 5 second long exposure. But for this effect, it’s more or less a love-hate relationship because the metering will not be really accurate and once in a while, if it’s too dark, i do get blanks or really underexposed shot.

There are quite a number of SLR 680 popping up in auctions and estate sales if you wish to get one but it is probably more uncommon than the SX-70, therefore, finding one might be a little harder as compared to the SX-70s. And it’s a pity that 600 films are also dead(for the time being). If not, it will probably be the best Polaroid(for me) that was ever made.

written by dotdotdot on 2009-08-30 #gear #review #slr #instant #polaroid-600 #polaroid #slr-680


  1. ananditya
    ananditya ·

    everyone loves polaroid, please somebody produce the film again...

    i think i've been to number 14, do you live in singapore?
    and number 15 is really nice
    great gallery!

  2. d_i_hunter
    d_i_hunter ·

    Terrific gallery - love 15 and 22 in particular.

  3. lomodirk
    lomodirk ·

    Nice one ;)

  4. stouf
    stouf ·

    Gorgeous gallery ! Good job dotdotdot !

  5. cinzinc
    cinzinc ·

    this is one serious polaroid camera! great gallery + review!

  6. maddyoulook
    maddyoulook ·

    ahhh need one

  7. noobits
    noobits ·

    I have been shooting Polaroid for about 2 years now and am still in love with it. Glad to see new converts to the SX70 world.

  8. tommynorth
    tommynorth ·

    this is the camera i have got!!! its a really cool camera. nice review and cool shots

  9. dotdotdot
    dotdotdot ·

    @anaditya: yap.. i'm from the sunny island of singapore!

    Thanks guys for the nice comments!

  10. lighttomysoul
    lighttomysoul ·

    daaaaamn this camera looks so tasty and amazing!! I want it but it's soooooo expensive!

  11. vivie
    vivie ·

    Your polas are wonderful!

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