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Achromat lens - magnifying LCD

  1. Nov 25, 2009 #1
    Hello all!

    Again I am a lost molecular biologist in the realm of physics, but this question shouldn't be so difficult!

    We are using an Olympus microscope to take pictures of our live cultures here in the lab and we have a real REAL old nikon attached to it to take pictures. I want to be able to magnify this thing so we have a nice view finder to proof our shots.

    Another post-doc, who is a mechanical engineer, suggested using an achromat lens for a quick and effective fix. He's gone to a conference for the next week so I'm left with no guidance!

    I've done a rough sketch of what the situation is...

    http://img130.imageshack.us/img130/6290/achromat.png [Broken]

    I'm going to be picking up the lens from http://www.surplusshed.com/.

    I have no idea at all which lens would be best. From what physicis I DO remember, in order for magnification to occur I'll need the object inside the focal length of the lens, yeah? I know that should work for a convex lens, but I have no idea the physics of an achromat lens...

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!! :)
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 25, 2009 #2


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    You want to just magnify the LCD screen on the camera to view the image you took?

    That probably isn't going to help, the LCD only has a limited number of pixels, magnifying it just shows you bigger pixels (whatever you see on CSI).
    If it's a matter of being able to see the display - does the camera have a video out? Most digital cameras, even small compacts have a headphone type socket somehwere that you can plug into a TV/monitor to show the pictures
  4. Nov 25, 2009 #3
    Hi mgb!

    Thank you for the quick response.

    The camera does have an AV out, but we have no space on the wall (shelves) or the bench to put an LCD monitor, otherwise this would have been the ideal option.

    We can see the display well enough, but when you are looking at 293T cells, it's a pain to look at them in the small screen. We thought that magnifiying the screen would make it easier to identify certain cells, since what the camera captures is not exactly what is being seeing through the microscope.

    If the achromat lens can at least enlarge the LCD by 50% then that would be worth it. But only if the magnification doesn't come at the cost of resolution...

    Ideally I'm looking for a 3X magnification (similar to what we'd see in an small LCD monitor).

    I'm open to any suggestions!

    Thanks again! :)
  5. Nov 25, 2009 #4


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    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
  6. Nov 26, 2009 #5
    Is the Nikon an SLR? If so, I'd consider replacing the Nikon with a digital SLR. You wouldn't need a fancy one, and some of the basic models are around $500-$700. You will want real-time video out, so make sure that's a priority.

    However, there may be a much cheaper approach...

    Gather the make/model of your microscope and call http://www.bhphotovideo.com/". They've been in the mail-order business for rock-bottom prices on professional equipment for decades, and their staff is very knowledgeable.

    The staff can be a little short sometimes, though, so line your ducks up with the capabilities you want before you call them.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
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