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Portable Digital Microscope

Whilst surfing, I came accross these cool little gadgets.

They have one with a standard VGA output (model - AM312 or 412),
couple this with a flat panel television, could make for an
interesting microscope setup for engraving, stone setting and such.
Might take some getting used to with a remote view screen, but cool
none the less.

Marveling at technology,

Hi Pat,

We are distributors for the USB microscope cameras, and we are the
ONLY ones manufacturing after-market lighting solutions for them as
well as a line of accessories specifically for jewelers, appraisers
and diamond dealers. Oh, and our prices are cheaper, too!

Please have a look.

Input and suggestions are invited.

Wayne Emeryi

Hi Pat,

Before you spend a lot of money on one of these microscopes I would
suggest that you get hold of one of the little ‘wireless spy
cameras’ such as the ones on this page

and play with that. I use one on my little cnc miller to see what is
happening round the back of the work and, by loosening the little
screw which locks the lens in place, you can focus down to about 1/2
inch or so and get a high magnification. However, the reason I would
suggest this is that you might find it is not suitable for what you
are wanting to do with it as such a system necessarily presents only
a flat picture (2D) and so you cannot get any good perception of
depth of field. I initially thought the idea might be useful in my
watchmaking and might provide a way to rest my eyes a bit but I
quickly reverted back to my binocular microscope as the flat image
didn’t really give me a clear idea of where my hand was in space…
Of course, it might work for you and then you might find that these
cheap cameras are a more economical way of achieving the same ends.
(while the cameras are basically intended for wireless operation,
some of them can be used with a fixed wire which is how I use mine
to avoid motor interference on the signal but they all provide a
composite video output which, in my case, I have linked in to a 7
inch LCD screen salvaged from an auto scrapyard - either a GPS
screen out of a high end car or an ‘in-flight entertainment’ screen
from a coach)

Best wishes,
Ian W. Wright
Sheffield UK

Mattel Toys and Intel came out with a similar device in the late 90’s
called the intelplay microscope. You can change the light source from
over or under the object you are viewing. They came out with it just
before Christmas. Then poof it disappeared. They still have a support
website and had a windows XP release of software but I dunno about
vista which is my current system. My son used to have fun taking
pictures up his nose then coloring in the details with the small
graphics capability of the software. The kids have grown and I still
have the microscope. I use it for viewing micro mounts of minerals.
Micro Mount is a hobby all in itself. We have a separate group in the
local mineralogical society. The fun part of being a micro mounter is
you can carry your whole mineral collection in a shoe box and put on
a pretty good display with what you can hold in your shirt pocket.

The interested people in micro mounting are getting on in years but
so is the hobby of rock collecting. With today’s society wanting
instant gratification no one’s much interested in rocks. The Cash
and Treasures show on the Travel Channel has sparked some interest in
rocks. But as soon as the newbie rock collectors see how much work
is involved and how few and far between the big finds are they will
probably drop out. The Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society is the
biggest club in Colorado. We’ve managed to grow with an educational
outreach to local schools, having a pebble pups group that is lead
by a noted paleo-geologist, and recruiting at ours shows. It took a
basic mind set transformation of the older members to share their
knowledge with younger members. Most clubs are dying from the old
timers not willing to share in their knowledge and running their
clubs as they did in the 1960’s.

BTW I can’t help but mentioning I am the 2008 president of CSMS. I
guess I’ll have to add that to my signature line once I am sworn

Rick Copeland
Silversmith and Lapidary Artisan
Rocky Mountain Wonders
Colorado Springs, Colorado

We are distributors for the USB microscope cameras, and we are the
ONLY ones manufacturing after-market lighting solutions for them as
well as a line of accessories specifically for jewelers, appraisers
and diamond dealers. 

My question would be what is the temperature Kelvin of these lights.

Hi Kevin,

The USB microscope cameras we handle for jewelry documentation at
take-in, inventory records, E-Bay selling etc., have built-in LED
lights surrounding the lens. They produce a light that records as
white (daylight), BUT…because this is axial lighting we recommend
they NOT be used for photographing jewelry.

We created a number of unique accessories for photographing jewelry,
inclusions in diamonds, girdle inscriptions, etc., but we
do not include lighting accessories as users seem to have varying
needs. We are not in the lighting business, but I use these cameras
on a daily and continuous basis and I use the Dazor 3-tube Daylight
fluorescent light, often used in jewelry stores for diamond and
colored stone grading and available from many jewelry supply houses.
I like Frei & Borel at Ott lights also work well, as
will most daylight type fluorescents.

The proper lighting of the subject is paramount, and our small,
collapsible light boxes were designed specifically for these
cameras, as are the other fixtures we make to make these cameras
very easy to use. Incidentally, they work seamlessly with The Edge.
so they are ideal for quick inventory pics or repair take-in.

Having a good image of the repair job at take-in could save your
bacon if a problem arises downstream.

If you have any questions, call me any time at (563) 355-0891. Or
see the Dazor and the cameras at

Anyone wishing further should contact e directly as I do
not feel comfortable using Orchid as a selling platform. Thank you.

Wayne Emery