usbscope 20081220 DIY USB microscope for $15

You can make your own USB microscope using an old webcam and a cheap toy microscope. All it takes is a soldering iron, some hot glue, and an hour of your time. Instructables user moris_zen has the details, which basically involves a little focusing trial and error before gluing things together:

While you view the image via the SW used for the webcam – position it so you get a clear image. You may need to play with it for a while. After you find the exact location use a hot glue gun to fix it to that position. Then tape the wires tidily to the microscope and start taking pictures…

I imagine you’d get even more interesting results substituting the old 320×240 web cam for an old 2 megapixel digital camera.

Also worth checking out would be to skip the optics entirely, positioning the CCD right up against the sample with a proper light source. I believe this is the technique being used in the UCLA cellphone microscope. The output is supposedly low-res and blurry, but it’s decent enough to capture the shadows of individual cells, making cellcount-based diagnoses possible.

Build a USB Digital Microscope
Aydogan Ozcan, UCLA Lensless Imaging System

blog comments powered by Disqus

Related Supplies at Maker Shed


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 28,776 other followers