The Kodak Instamatic 104 camera is a small, easy to use camera made of metal and plastic, with red details, and a wrist strap. It has a connection point for a flashcube, and uses two AAA batteries to power the flash. The flashcube could be used for 4 photographs, and the camera automatically turned the cube so a fresh flashbulb is in position when the next exposure is ready to take. The camera uses size 126 film on a drop-in plastic cartridge, which conveniently eliminated the need to thread film on a spool.
The Instamatic 104 is part of the Instamatic camera range which was launched worldwide in 1963. Just like other influential Kodak products before it, such as the Brownie camera, this small and compact camera revolutionised amateur photography.
The Instamatic range was inexpensive and simple to use, and it had two key features that made it very attractive to novice photographers. Firstly, loading the camera with film was fast and easy. Users only had to drop a film cartridge into the back of the camera - the Kodapak 126 and later the Kodapak 110. Secondly, the Instamatic came with built-in flash capability for indoor and night photography, and took colour and black & white print film as well as colour slide film. The camera was hugely popular and by 1970, 50 million instamatics had been made worldwide.
The Instamatic 104 model was made in Australia from 1965-1968. It was produced by the Camera Reels & Sundries Department in Building 15 at Kodak Australasia's new factory in Coburg, and was assembled from imported parts.
Museums Victoria holds one Instamatic 104 camera and some associated marketing and instructional material.
Kodakery, No. 82, September 1977, p.3