ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

USB Microscope Camera – turn your computer into a digital microscope for cheap

Updated on August 29, 2010

USB microscope cameras hit the market several years ago after the USB 2.0 system made plug-and-play USB accessories extremely user friendly.  In the beginning they were just an elaborate electronic toy for gadget lovers to play with.  Nowadays a USB microscope camera has come up in quality and produce exquisite video and image stills of microscopic subjects.  Many of these digital microscope cameras are used in the forensic industry because of their ease in portability and high quality.  They’re also used in electronics, semi-conductor, and materials industries because they provide a convenient method of searching the surface for flaws or defects in the materials.  However, since many of them cost under $100 it makes an affordable science tool for you and your kids.  But how do you find the right one for your needs?

There are several types of USB microscope cameras and each one will be different in both quality and price depending on the end use.  Some people are looking for portability in their digital microscope.  For forensics engineers and materials inspectors it may be important to have a small and light digital camera microscope.  This is where the USB microscope camera comes into play.  Because it’s a USB accessory, it plugs directly into the computer and gets its power from the computer.  This means that you’ll only have one cord to worry about and it powers everything from the microscope to the light.  Many times these types of digital microscopes will come with a stand that allows for hands free use which allows the user to position the camera at several angles to get the best shot.  These portable hands free USB microscopes are generally under a $100 and will magnify up to 100x.  They’ll come with software that allows you to digitally control the focus making it easier than trying to hold the camera still while playing with a focus.  The movie mode is incredibly helpful in producing high quality microscopic videos that can be used for research or testing.  The biggest issue with digital microscope video is that the size of the files can take up a lot of hard drive space which will require a large hard drive and memory to go with it, or frequent downloading of the microscopic movies.

Another type of USB microscope is the digital camera microscope adapters. Basically these are eyepiece cameras that can either be installed into the third port in trinocular microscopes or directly placed into the eyepiece of the stereomicroscope. These USB digital microscope cameras tend to be a little better quality as they rely on the microscope for magnification. The microscope adapters are built right into the microscope with a c mount adapter which is made for attaching a CCD microscope camera that takes high resolution video. Both Nikon and Olympus make excellent microscope cameras but they tend to be a little pricier. The other downside to the digital camera microscope adapter is that they are not portable; you sacrifice quality of picture and flexibility of options for lack of portability. Because the camera is built right into the microscope they are best suited for research purposes such as if you wanted to video the flow of a fluid through a microscopic channel, or you wanted to see how an electronic board would survive a fluid being spilled onto it or cleaned for that matter.


So which is the best microscope camera for you? If you are looking for portability and ease of use such as in field testing and microscopic analysis then a simple USB Microscope video camera would do the trick. If you’re looking to capture detailed video of scientific experiment or industrial research then a quality ccd microscope camera will capture the video you need to examine things in detail. If you want a simple microscope that allows you to examine things like bugs, hairs and fibers with your kids and to introduce them to the fun of nature and science you should be able to find a digital USB microscope camera somewhere online anywhere from $40-100. These types of digital microscopes are also handy for looking at skin and examining in detail any abnormal skin issue that may arise or to assist in removing splinters. No matter what type of USB camera that you get, the price you pay will reflect the quality of the images and video it captures as well as the number of features that it offers. To find the best price on a USB microscope camera will require a little research at some of the major online retailers. Check with places like Amazon and walmart to find the type of microscope you’re looking for at an affordable price.

Other Microscope Resources

Microscopes for Kids - Getting your kids interested in science at a young age has proven to make them more successful and better educated.  Getting a microscope for your child can make science fun and more interesting.  This article can help you find the right one for you child.

Dissecting Microscopes v. Stereo Microscopes - knowing the difference can save you lots of money.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)