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110 Reviews
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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High quality..... MAC users pay attention!
This little microscope works great. I used to own the entire ProScope kit which I used in honors High School Biology class. That was a great camera but when I retired a few years back I could not see having it sit around so I donated it to a school.

I have wanted another microscope over the last few years when I stumbled upon this one. I have a fair number...
Published 16 months ago by okiedan

versus
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not compatible with a MAC
The software does not load on a MAC computer and the video/camera function doesn't work. The microscope is hard to keep in focus.
Published 14 months ago by SN


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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High quality..... MAC users pay attention!, April 13, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
This little microscope works great. I used to own the entire ProScope kit which I used in honors High School Biology class. That was a great camera but when I retired a few years back I could not see having it sit around so I donated it to a school.

I have wanted another microscope over the last few years when I stumbled upon this one. I have a fair number of Plugable products in my house so when I saw they had this little scope at a very reasonable price I decided to give it a try.

Now for my little warning above. If you are a mac user the functionality that you get from the provided dvd disk is a cheap NO function app that is not worth even installing on your computer.

After looking around at Plugable's web site and various web searches I finally found the FREE software that turns this scope on FULL BLAST. You will want to go to:
VEHO
veho-world.com
download MicroCapture 1.0 for mac. I think this is a UK site.
download it and BAM you have full functions to take pictures, video, etc....
I had intended on returning it before my searching resulted in this above download.
GET this little scope....it's fun and easy to use.
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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic learning tool for a student or a hobbyist!, December 29, 2012
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
Length:: 3:37 Mins

If you have a child that has an interest in science or you are a collector of stamps or coins or have and interest in science yourself then this is an ideal item for you to purchase. This is an extremely powerful digital microscope that lets you capture high resolution photos and videos of magnified images for your review. If your child is looking for a science fair project this is a wonderful and educational item for them to own.

I have put together a short video to show the features and benefits of the microscope and what it is capable of doing. I found it easy to install and use and the results that you can see are amazing. Here are the main features that I really liked:
* Captures photos and video of the specimen that you are looking at.
* Features a 50X optional zoom
* Has a 200 X digital magnification
* Has an adjustable LED to light the specimen for photography.
* Includes powerful software to use the microscope to its fullest capabilities.
* Comes with a metal stand to hold the microscope.
* The microscope and LED light are powered by the USB port of your computer so it does not require additional power to operate.

This will provide you and your children with hours of interesting scientific investigation into the world of smaller objects around you. I had fun testing the product and making the video. As a young child I had a microscope and a chemistry set (yes I am a geek) and this new digital microscope is just a fantastic improvement upon that original microscope with today's technological improvements. Capturing high resolution color photos and videos is really easy and fun.

This camera is a great tool and learning opportunity. I strongly recommend this product to you as a great gift for a child or a hobbyist. The unit is priced well and is a good value. I rate it as a five star product.

I was supplied a sample for test and evaluation and I promised to provide a fair and honest review.
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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent little microscope for the money!, August 23, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
Length:: 2:16 Mins

Very pleased with this purchase! Arrived the next day after ordering. Googled the product name, downloaded the latest driver/software from the manufacturer's website, plugged in the microscope via the USB cable, and installed the software. About one minute later I was up and running flawlessly (on a Windows 7 laptop). All the pics in this video were taken with this device, holding it in my hand (did not bother with the stand), using only ambient light and the max setting on the LED's on the scope. Low-to-medium magnification requires you to position the scope a few inches away from your subject, then adjusting the focus/zoom wheel, while for max/high magnification you should place the scope directly on/over your subject before using the fine focus wheel. For the price, I'm astounded by its capability. My kids are going to love this. Highly recommended.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice microscope with an odd zoom lens, September 2, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
Here are some quick facts that you might want to know about this microscope:
1. The lens is actually a type of zoom lens but not the kind you might be used to. See below for more details.
2. A significant range of the magnification settings require the object you are looking at to be inside the body of the microscope!
3. The magnification numbers assume you are using roughly a 19" diagonal 1280x1024, or 25" diagonal 1920x1080 monitor.
4. The overall image quality is very good but not perfect
5. The frame rate is 30 frames per second at 640x480 and only 5 frames per second at 1600x1280 if you use the driver they supply because it removes support for MJPEG encoding. If you don't use their driver you can get up to 15 frames per second at 1600x1280.
6. The supplied application only works with their driver installed.

Now for some details:

After ordering this on Amazon, and before even receiving it, I got an email from Plugable instructing me to download the latest software through a provided link. I think this shows a level of support you might not get from other sellers on similar items.

Other reviews have said the lens on this microscope is focusable but not a zoom lens. It appears to actually be a varifocal zoom lens with some unusual properties, some good and some not so good. There is a magnification adjustment wheel in the side of the body that is labeled with numbers that they refer to as "magnification" in the software. The wheel can be turned one full rotation. At one end of the rotation, there is an unlabeled region. From the end of this region to the other end of the rotation there are numbers from 20 through 230. Turning the wheel changes the distance from the lens to where an object will be in focus. If this were just a focusable lens, and not a zoom lens, one end of the rotation would focus very close and provide a high magnification and, as the focus is adjusted, the focus distance would increase and the magnification would decrease. That is not the case with this lens. In the unlabeled region, the focus distance goes from past infinity, where nothing at any distance is in focus, to about ⅜" from the end of the clear ring at the end of the microscope when you get to 20, the first labeled number on the wheel. As you continue to turn the wheel, the focus distance continues to decrease until you get to about 39 where the focus distance is level with the end of the clear ring. From 39 to 205, the focus point is actually inside the clear ring so what you are looking at needs to be small enough to fit into the ring and the ring cannot be detached from the rest of the unit. Over most of this range, the focus distance is between ¼" and ⅜" inside the ring. From 205 to 230, the focus distance goes from the outside surface of the ring to about .1" past the surface. If the ring could be detached or the focus didn't move so close I would have given this 5 stars. Perhaps this issue is just a sample defect in the unit I have.

The video quality is very good for a $40 device. At low light levels, there are some horizontal and vertical lines in the image that shouldn't be there in addition to random noise one would expect at low light. At normal light levels and those provided by the built in lights, the lines can't be seen and the image quality is surprisingly good. The uniformity of focus at the edges of the image isn't perfect but its very good for the price. When the center of an image of a flat object is in focus, the edges are a little out of focus but it's not bad. If you are viewing shiny objects, there is some glare from the built in LED's but you can always provide your own light from the side if this is a problem.

Without the provided software driver, the microscope appears as a standard UVC USB webcam with multiple resolutions supported. The UVC support allows the camera to be used without drivers on many devices. I tried it on my Chromebook and it works but I have no way to change resolutions. Unfortunately, the driver they ask you to install only outputs YUV data, not MJPEG. This limits the frame rate it can achieve at higher resolutions. Although it can produce 30FPS at 640x480, it can only do 5FPS at 1600x1280. With the provided driver loaded, a few additional resolutions are supported but, without their driver supported, MJPEG is supported and the frame rate at the higher resolutions goes up to 15FPS.

Under Windows, the included software requires the included driver to be loaded before you can use the microscope. The software allows you to view the video and take pictures and capture video. It should also allow you to take pictures by pressing the button on the camera but the button on mine does nothing. Presumably it is defective. You can also measure and annotate the pictures it has captured but you cannot measure things in the live video preview. The measurements are calibrated by entering the magnification setting on the zoom wheel into the application. Strangely, it only takes numbers from 1 to 220 even though the wheel goes up to 230. Unfortunately, the magnification number must be an integer and this does not allow enough resolution when measuring things at a low magnification. The software allows you to mark up the image with measurements, lines and text and then save it to a new .jpg file.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful for detailed examination for stamp/coin collectors, September 14, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
I'm one of those dinosaurs that still collects stamps and coins (and I don't mean those Forever stamps for mail and change from a purchase). Sometimes collectors need to "fly speck" or examine very closely some feature of a stamp or coin to categorize it. This could mean the difference between a commonly issued item versus one with an error or variant style. I used to scan my items on a flat bed or use my digital camera to take macro images but this is cumbersome and time consuming when you just want to examine a plate number or mint marking on one item.

Hand-held microscope units, such as this one, allow more detailed examination of an item without having to set up a scanner or photo shoot, and being a USB driven device, not only can you examine the image easily on your higher resolution computer screen "live" but also you can save it as a jpg or bmp image for later use. I will try to upload some stamp and coin images I took to show you what I've been able to do so far. The only caution is, if you want to take an image of the whole coin or stamp, you have to have incredibly steady hands as you have to raise the unit to about 4 inches over the item. The little stand that comes with this is not adequate to use for this purpose. A better solution is to get a stand for the device, which is readily available; I got a Lighthouse 10.5 inch tall stand with a sturdy base, for example.

To do detailed examinations, here are a couple of tips. One is that it doesn't matter what the coin or stamp orientation is; you can place it at an angle, top down, etc. and all you have to do is rotate the hand held device to line it up perfectly. So what? Well this is very helpful if, for example, you want to examine a design feature on the side of a stamp and the bottom corner of the stamp. By rotating the device you minimize touching the stamp needlessly and lower the risk of damage to coins from oily fingers and unforgiving tongs. Another tip is that being a USB hand held device, you can easily hook it up to your laptop and take it to your stamp or coin collection, without the need to take the collectible out and put it back of the album in the other room, for example.

The only drawback that kept it from getting 5 stars is the lack of an on-off switch; when you plug in the USB cable the microscope's lights come on and stay on. Another very minor issue is that the dial for magnification seems a bit "cheap" to me, and not precise but I have nothing other than an impression from using it, to base my opinion. That is, perhaps they are all like that, even in the highest priced models.

In summary, if you read this whole review you are likely to be a collector as I am, and for you I would recommend this unit to enhance your serious examination of your precious collection. If you are not a collector, you can still enjoy the other nifty uses for this as others have pointed out. Enjoy!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the money!, March 2, 2013
By 
B. Wilson (Los Angeles, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
I was looking for a plug and play type of scope and by it saying "Plugable", I thought this was it. Well you have to use the CD to install the software first. However, this scope is well worth the money. It is small, but not too small. The lights and magnification dials are great. It is easy to use. The downside is the weak stand. It is not sturdy at all. So overall the scope would get 5 stars but I took away a star for the stand and not being plug and play. Hope this helps.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mac setup was a breeze, don't listen to the haters!, June 16, 2014
By 
Craig Anderson (HEBER CITY, UT, US) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
I don't know why everyone was complaining about setting this up on a Mac. I plugged it in and opened Photo Booth, Clicked the Cameras tab at the top and selected the USB camera that had appeared. I didn't even have to install anything, this was plug and play for my Mac and I was up and running in less than 2 minutes (OS X 10.9.3). You can take a picture in the Photo Booth App or you can do a screen shot with Command + Shift + 3. That will take a picture of your whole screen, use Command + Shift + 4, if you only want to snap a picture of a certain area.

Every household needs one of these! It will turn everyone in your house into a scientist. I was thinking of buying a much more expensive microscope for me and the kids to play with, I have used cheap digital microscopes in the past and have not been all that impressed with the clarity and ease of use. This thing was a breeze to setup and is easy to focus. For $40 you can't beat this. If you are expecting a lab quality microscope go buy a $500 LED Binocular Compound scope and shut your mouth. For the price there is no better digital microscope. Get it!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not compatible with a MAC, June 9, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
The software does not load on a MAC computer and the video/camera function doesn't work. The microscope is hard to keep in focus.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommend for coin collectors!, November 13, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
Great item for coin collectors! My old eyes can't hardly read the dates anymore and this thing works great. Very easy to setup the software for it. Minimal time lag on the videos.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing textures, December 29, 2012
This review is from: Plugable USB 2.0 Digital Microscope for Windows, Mac, Linux (2MP, 10x-50x Optical Zoom, 200x Digital Magnification) (Personal Computers)
The family got this as a gift, but I'm eyeing it for textures in my layered photography work. Heads up: the software isn't fancy, and it's easy to take too many captures at once. Best to manipuate the capture files directly on your computer (in C:\photos). But the results are worth it!
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