In the age of immediate gratification, film cameras are curiously still on-trend. Never mind that every smartphone has a camera (or four, for that matter), most with built-in filters and fully adjustable settings. Film is far from dead — and in the Philippines, film cameras have transformed from an everyday gadget to a speciality tool for art.
All that said, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to this apparatus. While it’s true that ultra vintage film cameras have their charm, it doesn’t mean you have to force yourself into using the most avant-garde model there is. If you’re just starting out, you can certainly go for a lower-priced film camera — it gives you less pressure with the same amount of thrill! Fortunately for you, there are several affordable film cameras in the Philippines. Here are some of the top brands you can buy for under ₱2,000.
Film cameras in the Philippines for under ₱2,000
1. Agfa Photo Analogue 35MM Reusable Camera
It takes skill to mess up a photo using an Agfa Film Camera. The brand has an excellent reputation among hobbyists, so its reusable camera, although in a lower tier, is a promising tool for amateur photographers. Compatible with 35mm film, this one has a built-in flash and comes with a velvet pouch and wrist strap.
2. Lomography Simple Use Film Camera
If you’re a fan of filters and enjoy groovy snaps, put the Lomography Simple Use Film Camera on your radar. You can use it with different types of film, such as a colour negative, a monochrome with fine grain, and a psychedelic colour-shifting type. For under ₱2,000, the camera already comes preloaded with film; it has different colour gel flash filters, too, so you can add tint to your shots.
3. Ilford Harman Reusable Point-and-Shoot
Another photographer favourite, Ilford Harman is a trusted brand that delivers, regardless of its model. But what makes their point-and-shoot camera a particularly excellent choice for beginners is its settings — or lack thereof. Most of its profiles — including its shutter speed, focal length, and ISO — are fixed, forcing you to focus on composition. In other words, you’re in for sui generis photographs without having to overthink.
4. Kodak M35 Reusable Analogue Point and Shoot
Kodak has long been a household name for film cameras in the Philippines. Pre-smartphones, everyone trusted this brand for documenting memories. So considering the Kodak M35 is a no-brainer: the point-and-shoot camera works as it has always done. Its focus lens is fixed to 31mm, f/10, with an ISO of 200/400 and a shutter speed of 1/120s. Other than winding its films, all the Kodak M35 asks you to do is take photos and develop the film roll.
5. Vibe Photo 501F 35mm Film Camera
Want a vintage vibe for less? The Vibe Photo 501F is a no-fuss film camera that consistently produces cool nostalgic photographs. It is often compared to the Kodak M35, with minimal details varying: It weighs 10 grams heavier, with a higher optics lens and lower aperture ring. Compared to the former, the Vibe Photo 501F also sports a more antique look, with a body in timeless colours like champagne silver, army green, and black.
6. Fujifilm Simple Ace Disposable Film Camera
Not yet ready to commit to a reloadable camera? Consider getting the Fujifilm Simple Ace, a disposable film camera that produces the same washed-out effect as does any other analogue camera. One of the most economical film cameras in the Philippines, this gadget comes preloaded with film and lets you snap up to 27 pictures.
The drawbacks for many disposable cameras, however, are the limited settings and relatively cheap quality. However, if you’re just after taking wistful photos, then the Fujifilm Simple Ace is definitely an excellent pick. Among other disposable film cameras in the Philippines, Fujifilm Simple Ace is of superior calibre — just ask anyone who’s tried it!
7. Ben and Bart Disposable Film Camera
When it comes to aesthetics, Ben and Bart can’t do wrong. So if you want an IG-worthy camera, you might find their disposable film camera undeniably charming. With pre-installed batteries and films, the Ben and Bart cameras come ready to use for anyone — regardless of photography skill level! It lets users take up to 17 pretty snaps that they can have developed at any photo store.
8. The Lula Club Dispofilm Camera
We think The Lula Club’s Dispofilm Camera is the funkiest film camera in the Philippines. Powered by Kodak Ultra 400ISO Film, the disposable camera comes in three bold and bright prints. But even with looks aside, the Dispofilm is truly worth every penny — for under ₱1,000, it already comes with a built-in 35mm film and batteries, letting users take up to 27 shots.
Available on Lazada.
9. Yashica MF-1 35mm Reusable Analogue Film Camera
A legendary Japanese brand in its golden days, Yashica brought back its name to the market, targeting modern-day film camera enthusiasts. The Yashica MFi-1 is a 35mm camera with an f/11 aperture, a 1/120 shutter speed, and an ISO of 400.
On top of all that, the camera has a built-in flash and a wide field of view; its specs encourage focused and sharp photos. Need we say more? You can choose your preferred Yashica MFi-1 colour, too: It comes in pink, blue, lavender, yellow, turquoise, black, red, dark blue, or green.
10. Ilford XP2 Disposable Camera
Fans of monochromatic shots will adore the Ilford XP2 Disposable Camera. Its film is developed with C-41 chemicals, producing black and white photos sans post-processing.
Trusted by many professional photographers, this disposable camera has a powerful flash, a reasonably wide-angle lens, and 27 built-in film shots. Although not a popular choice among colour aficionados, the Ilford XP2 Disposable Camera is certainly the perfect gateway to monochromatic analogue photography.
Available on Lazada.
As fun as TikTok and Instagram are, absolutely nothing can replace the joy of film photography. So if you want to take on this new hobby, take your time and look for the best film camera in the Philippines for you.