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What is a digital microscope? Who uses digital microscopes?

A digital microscope is a tool used in observing electronic parts of varying sizes. It is in essence still a traditional microscope, but it has the advantage of showing an image on a monitor using optics and a digital camera, often with the help of computer software. Engineers, makers, and academics can use digital microscopes in different domains, such as education, research, and industrial manufacturing.

One of the first concepts of the digital microscope had a control box and lens connected to a computer via an S-video connection. As this was not capable of transmitting digital information in large quantities, the connection was changed to Firewire 800. With time, technology has evolved and by late 2015 the problem of wiring was resolved with the help of USB. Nowadays, using a USB connection gives us more speed and longevity, and saves the number of cables, and the size of the unit. It also has the advantage of covering a multitude of magnification and qualities.

A digital microscope that connects to the USB port of the PC is called a USB digital microscope. Due to the connection of the USB microscopes, they are low-powered. However, they are the best digital microscope for projects on a budget.

Which digital microscope should you buy?

A digital microscope helps you to quickly view and analyze the sample image using software. It saves your eyes from fatigue, and you can sit in a comfortable and relaxed upright position because the image of the sample is displayed on a monitor.

Elektor offers various digital microscopes with high-quality sensors, reasonable depth of field, and powerful magnification (up to 300 times), among other properties necessary for a thorough inspection. Some of the products provided by Elektor include the USB Digital Microscope with a camera, software, and user manual included, and Full HD HDMI Digital Microscope with LCD Screen for high-precision examination and soldering without any hassle.

Accessories for digital microscopes include lenses, LED ring lights, power supplies, and remote controls. Elektor offers different types of cameras and the option of an LCD screen.

Elektor’s top models are the Andonstar AD407 and AD409 HDMI Digital Microscopes. But which should you pick?

Both deliver exceptional digital microscope experiences. Their main feature is the HDMI output, offering the power to view results on a big screen. They have a variety of video outputs, such as UHD 2880x2160, and both support MP4 video format. The image sensor for the AD407 and AD409 offers the quality of 4 Megapixels HD. However, the most important differences should be mentioned:

  • The AD407 has a screen size of 7 inches. However, its successor, AD409, has a screen size 3 inches bigger, which is an improvement over the usual, freeing your eyes from fatigue. Moreover, this digital microscope offers magnification up to 300 times, an upgrade compared to the magnification of 200 times of the AD407.
  • The bigger screen size has a drawback: the AD409 digital microscope weighs 2.2 kg, which is 600 g more than the AD407. Therefore, those who want a lighter version and think the screen size is perfect may choose the latter.
  • Yet, if you would like to have PC Support and Mobile Connectivity, then the best digital microscope is AD40. With Windows (7 or higher) support and the possibility to connect to Wi-Fi, the AD409 is raising the bar to a higher standard.

What are the pros and cons associated with digital microscopes?

  • Digital microscopes offer high-definition images from all kinds of angles and magnification levels. Electronics enthusiasts can see the slightest detail with no difficulty. However, it comes with the trade-off that the higher quality, the greater the price.
  • Digital microscopes are portable, easy to hold, and thus flexible. It gives users the opportunity to use it in any environment without much trouble. The only thing a portable digital microscope needs is a USB connection to a source of power.
  • Digital microscopes save time and provide convenience, as they are more accessible than traditional microscopes. For this reason, they are used for educational purposes, where children can easily interact with the samples.

In conclusion, the benefits are focused on major aspects of modern life, and purchasing a digital microscope provides only great advantages.

Why buy digital microscopes from Elektor?

Whether you are pro engineer or a weekend maker, a digital microscope is a must-have. With a digital microscope, you can study electronic systems by capturing and documenting the tiniest of components. It will be a handy tool for your workbench or your mobile engineering pack. A benefit associated with purchasing such benchtop tools from Elektor is that our in-house engineering team uses many of them in our lab. Thus, we publish a lot of content (project articles, reviews, and videos) that feature the tools, so you can see learn how other engineers put them to use.