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Photographing microcrystals


#1

Dear Orchid:

I would like to photograph barely visible metallic crystals which I
would guess are 1/10 mm wide or less.

I have been told that an SLR camera with ring flash might do the
job.

Does anyone else have experience with this kind of photography?


#2

Hi Peter,

I would like to photograph barely visible metallic crystals which
I would guess are 1/10 mm wide or less. I have been told that an SLR
camera with ring flash might do the 

If you want to get pics of small things, go to thelittelcameras.com.
They have several small usb cameras that have built in microscopes.
They’re great for taking pics of small items. Just a satisfied
customer.

Dave


#3

Set up your camera with a set of bellows between the camera and
telephoto lens.

Judy Shaw


#4

Hi Peter! I would suggest you contact a rock collectors club and ask
about micromount groups. Many people collect tiny crystals that
require magnification to see properly and many photogrraph them to, I
have tried, with limited success, I made a tube to fit on my SLR, to
pack out the lense for more magnification but had light and focus
problems. I know some people reverse lenses - so the front of the
lense actualy mounts to the camera instead of the rear - and even add
more than one lense, all this gives more magnification. If you can
find a micromount group in your area, Im sure they will have someone
who does it and will advise you, or do it for you. If you want, I
might be able to find someone, if you post your area. Good luck!

Philip Wells, Nelson, New Zealand


#5

A digital microscope should work. I bought a Dino Lite microscope at
JA NY. It magnifies about 200X. I think they’re about $500 fully
tricked out. They start in the 300’s.

Good Luck


#6

Yes, I photograph very tiny objects every day.

You CAN do it with an SLR, macro lens and extension tubes on a very
sturdy tripod or a sandbag…

Or you can use one of the small USB microscope cameras like the
Dino-Lite, which has magnification up to 200X
www.thelittlecameras.com and built-in LED lighting. Just plug it
into a USB port on your computer and take pictures…

Or you can use one of the microscope cameras designed to replace the
objective lens on a microscope…

Or you can get an adapter which allows your SLR to be used on a
regular microscope.

In any case, a ring light would be a rather poor choice for the
microcrystals. A much better choice would be a light that grazes the
microcrystals (comes ACROSS them at a low angle). This will create
relief to help define the crystals. The frontal lighting of a ring
light reduces detail and is often odd-looking.

A fiber optic light source would be ideal, but an ordinary desk lamp
with a screw-in incandescent bulb will also work well, even better
if you use a clear bulb rather than a frosted one. Be sure to set
the white balance to match the light source.

Wayne Emery