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Magnifying floor lamp

I’m looking for recommendations for a good magnifying floor lamp, preferably by brand name. I can manage with the optivisor but I don’t find it comfortable. I can spend hundreds but not thousands. Many thanks.

Have you looked at sites that are cater to sewers and quilters? I use an ancient one to engrave under.

Thank you. I have looked at some reviews, just thought I’d check here to see if there was a standard one that people preferred. Cheerio

Sorry about my poorly worded reply. Others may be aware of a jewelry specific magnifying lamp, but I am not. Many of us use Optivisors or other similar devices. Some work under a microscope to set stones and do engraving. There was a recent discussion about higher end medical type magnifiers. You will have to search for that one. Good luck…Rob

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Since my question is similar, I will piggyback on your question. I am researching microscopes for engraving. I know that the gold standard is the Leica A60 for around $3,000. I can spend that amount, but before I do I would like to see if there is something less expensive that is more appropriate for the beginning engraver. I am specifically interested in the Amscope line. I have heard favorable comments, but can’t find where. My engraving is pretty much limited to 1" diameter flat pieces, so the width and depth of field is smaller than what the more experienced engraver, especially gun engraver, might need. Does anyone have experience with the Amscope or other similarly priced line and is there a particular model that you would recommend?Thanks…Rob

Rob –
Have you asked about microscopes on Engravers Cafe?
Hand engraving forum
– alonzo

I’ll pick up the type that needlework people use, to take a break from the optivisor (which gives me headaches). cheerio

I have looked at both the Engraver Cafe and Steve Lindsay’s sites. I can’t find anything about the Amscope line. Maybe I should go back and be a bit more diligent.

I can’t comment on that scope, but I have an older, Otto Frei scope (that model no longer being sold) and it does not stay in focus as I change the magnification. You might want to be sure the focus stays constant as you alter the magnification, so you don’t have to continually adjust the height. ‘Little’ details can mean a lot.

Neil A

Thanks! It is a mystery to me right now. I may just stick with my old lighted magnifier that came from my fathers shop 25 years ago…Rob

Also take a look at the Craftoptics glasses with magnifier. I find them to be completely comfortable and they have a focal length that is perfect for jewelry. You would likely not need the attached light because your bench would be well lighted. Crafters move around sitting in different chairs so they need the light.



regarding using a microscope, i find that what works best for me is:

first adjust my chair to a comfortable height, feet flat on the floor.

then adjust the scope head to a comfortable height, while the up/down dial is set at halfway…head and neck relaxed.
(i approach the scope head, barely touch the lenses to my checkbone, look straight ahead, and then drop my glance down into the lenses. ie: how i position my head angle to the lenses)

then set the magnification knob to the maximum

then adjust the height position of my work piece to be in focus.
(i find the grs “true axis slide and lock” with ball vise shelf attached, works well for making quick adjustments to the height of the work piece. the tru-axis version of the “slide and lock” is designed to not raise up above bench height and hit the scope, the the original “slide and lock”

i can make subtle changes to the height of the workpiece using the knob, or raise or lower the workpiece using the slide and lock, while maintaining a comfortable seated position…without stretching my neck up, or slouching down, both of which adversely affect my head angle to the lenses and mess up my view.

so…basically i am saying that for me, i try to maintain my position, and move the focus knob and the work piece…

i hope that makes sense…perhaps it will help in your decision making process…


Hi Rob and Sue,
As far as microscopes go, I have had several older stereo zoom microscopes, both Bausch and Lombs and American Opticals. They have all worked very well and were fairly cheap. Zoom ranges were either 7X to 30X or 7X to 45X. It is easy enough to get a ring light for these scopes on ebay for about $35 to $75. The only problem I had with one AO scope was that an internal lens came loose and disabled the scope…I would have had to have the lens reglued in the right place. As it was, I found a replacement head for the scope for about $175. The boomstand was the hardest thing to find, the heads were available all over Ebay. I think I paid about $350 for the boomstand + scope. You might try looking at the Cloudy Nights astronomy site, because there is at least one vendor there who sells reconditioned microscopes and stands. I don’t have any experience with the newer Amscopes, but I suspect that they are adequate. Hope this helps. I am a great fan of working under the scope, it changes your accuracy level drastically, you can see so much more than with an Optivisor or something similar. -royjohn

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i have a scope from AmScope and am very happy with it. since i don’t know what your requirements are, i would suggest calling AmScope and speaking with them.

Mostly engraving and stone setting…Rob

Well, I know a lot about microscopes now, if I can ever afford one :smile:

Hi Rob,
I am away from my studio right now so i cannot check, but i think i have the .50x objective lens on my A60…GRS also offers a .63x objective lens…and i cannot recall the difference as it relates to working properties…

perhaps call grs and inquire…to get an understanding of what type of lens you might be looking for…


here is info on leica objective lenses .50x and .63x…i believe there is also a .75x

my working distance is around 6”…

also meiji has more objective lenses starting at .35x i belive


lots of different styles and mounts

Hi Rob,

I am thinking you might want an articulating boom type arm, that clamps or is mounted to your bench, versus a small stand, as it would provide more flexibility in positioning work…in the future…

i think the working distance would be of prime concern…the head length/height also adds to the distance from the workpiece…longer working distances puts the workpiece lower down…and if you are working with a standard ball, the bench shelf holding the vise is even lower down due to the height of the ball

i got the objective lens that grs recommended for jewelry engraving and stone setting, versus gun engraving

i hope that makes sense…