The fact that nearly everyone is carrying a Smartphone, and therefore a digital camera in their pockets lends itself to some wonderful solutions with just a bit of accesorizing. Lab equipment is being designed around the Smartphone and you can expect more such items in the future.
Now it stands to reason that the camera on your smartphone could be adapted to other optical systems to turn your Smartphone into a telescope or microscope camera. Well, for telescoping the best that can be done so far is to develop ways to attach the phone to binoculars or telescopes, as they tend to require some hefty optics. But small microscopes are nothing new, so why not attach a microscope system to a Smartphone? Well this was also done, but previous designs did have some issues -namely that to hold the camera you needed to put the smartphone into a special case:
Special cases meant that the microscopes were brand-specific and it could be very tricky to find a microscope that would work with your model. The above unit was for an iPhone 4, but once the iphone 6 came along it was old news. Never mind if you wanted one for an Android phone!
Well there is now a solution for this problem. We present the Universal Smartphone Microscope!
Instead of requiring a mount (for which you have to remove your own mount) the Universal Smartphone Microscope uses a clamp with padded jaws to clamp onto your smartphone:
The Universal Smartphone Microscope works with almost all Smartphones and most Pads. It will work with most protective cases so you won’t need to remove the csae to use the microscope. The padded jaws will not damage your screen , lenses, or other vital parts of your Smartphone.
Adjustment is not automatic as with the case sytems. You will need to adjust the clamp so that the microscope portion fits over the camera lens. This is not hard as the clamp is fairly easy to move. The downside is that bumping the clamp may dislodge it and require you to re-adjust the mircscope.
Once you think you’ve got it set, just fire up your favorite camera app and check the alignment. Even if you got it perfect you will notice some vignetting when you first start:
This is to be expected. Simply expand the picture like you were zooming in on an object with the camera normally and let the system focus. Place the microscope very close or onto the object you would like to view and turn on the attached light if needed. You are ready to start viewing and photographing. You can even take video!
So how do the images look? We’ll save that for Part 2 of this review. Part 2 Now published