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Customer Review

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great microscope for elementary through college and beyond, March 26, 2010
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This review is from: Celestron 44104 500x Power Advanced Biological Microscope (Electronics)
We just got this microscope for our oldest child - in early elementary. I can see this microscope being useful all the way through college and beyond.
It is a real microscope, and only slightly more pricey than high-end toy microscopes.

What is great about it
* Great optics - You can see the objects clearly, on all magnifications the lenses are great. We haven't installed the LED light yet, but could clearly see the prepared slides using the mirror, and little natural + recessed light - so the lenses let quite a bit of light go through.
* Moveable stage - One of my favorite extra features. This is the only entry level microscope where we've seen this feature (this is one of the differences between this and the Celestron 44102). It has dials that allow you to move the slide up/down and left/right without having to remove the slide itself. That way you can explore the whole preparation, and come back to the point where you started (it has scales on the sides so you know how far you've moved).
*Easy to focus - Has coarse and fine focus knobs. They are easy to use. I've used microscopes for a long time, but my young elementary school child got the hang of it within a few minutes.
* Two options for illumination - a mirror and an LED light (you can only have one of them installed at a time). You can use it at night, or you can take it out to the backyard in a sunny day.
* Condenser works really well, so you can really regulate the amount of light going through - this allows you to have just the correct amount of light for both very dense slides, and very light ones.
* Sturdy and really well built. As far as I can tell, it is mostly metal. It comes partially unassembled, but it is really easy to screw in the objective lenses - the good fit of the lenses is another sign of a well, carefully built product.
* Easy enough to use by a young child, but powerful enough and with good enough optics to be enjoyed by kids and adults alike.
* It uses standard lenses, so potentially you could purchase, for example, a digital eyepiece adapter to be able to connect it into your computer and take digital pictures, or show the object under the microscope to a group of kids.

What could be improved - For the price, very little. My only 2 items on the wish list-
* A better way to store delicate spare parts - mostly the LED light (or mirror) when the other one is in use, and the spare eyepiece (it comes with a 10x and 12.5x). Nothing that can't be solved with a $4 plastic box - but it would be nice to have something with special compartments to hold those parts.
* A feature that would prevent you from getting the objective lens all the way into the slide (mostly a problem with the highest magnification lens).

All in all, a great investment, and would recommend it to anyone (child or adult) wanting to explore the microscopic world.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 25, 2010 10:36:48 PM PDT
Ellen... It seems quite nice, but for a wider selection check out amscope.com.
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