Microscope Features to Look For

In the market for a microscope for next year’s science class?  You may be looking new online or used at your local curriculum sale or swap, but whatever the case, be sure to look for these qualities in a microscope purchase:

  1. Glass optics
  2. Hefty feel
  3. Viewing size large including high power
  4. Easy to focus
  5. Stability
  6. Clips for objective security
  7. Stays focused when bumped
  8. Optics not scratched
  9. Light source good
  10. Has low and high power: 100X and 400-500X.

Good, but optional:

  1. Transportable
  2. Electric light source
  3. Parafocal
  4. Bent body tube
  5. Binocular
  6. Slide making equipment

 

Lookout for these qualities:

  1. Plastic optics
  2. Light weight
  3. Viewing size small especially at high power
  4. Hard to focus well
  5. Tips easily
  6. No way to secure specimen
  7. Does not stay focused when bumped, or even when not bumped
  8. Optics glass, but scratched
  9. Light source inadequate, or hard to adjust or find bulbs for
  10. Only has less than 100X, or advertises greater than 600X.
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2 Comments

  1. Joyce May 16, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

    Thanks for this, I know nothing about microscopes and with the boys being older I have been looking. Now I have some guidelines to shop with.

    Peace, <

    • esther May 16, 2011 at 7:03 pm #

      You’re welcome! Also, Home Science Tools has some great microscope guidelines here.

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