Does anyone have any QX5 tips?

Does anyone have any QX5 tips?

Postby Jaysn » Mon Oct 06, 2008 3:16 pm

I recently purchased a QX5 USB microscope after seeing some of the great pictures that people are posting with one. Does anyone have any tips on how to use this thing? I haven't been able to get anything to show up on 200x at all for example. I've been able to get some decent shots at 10x and 60x, but some of them seem very blurry, no matter how much I try to focus it. Are there any lighting mods that can be done to it, or does anyone use secondary lighting?
~Jayson
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Postby "Umm, fish?" » Mon Oct 06, 2008 3:50 pm

Anything that you can do to get additional light into it will help. I think Matt shines an LED flashlight in from the side. That's certainly what I did when I still used one. Also, it lets you use the top light OR the bottom light, but not both at once. I removed the bottom light and would shine an LED up from below, as well using the top light and a flashlight from the side.

Be very careful with your stage. The threads inside are made of plastic and will get sloppy over time. Once they get a little stripped out then you are pretty much relegated to holding the stage up by hand and you can pretty much kiss whatever precision focus you had goodbye.

The truth is, despite the success that Matt's had with his, my experience was that you get what you pay for. I tossed mine.

Good luck!
Andy

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Postby PaulG » Mon Oct 06, 2008 8:56 pm

As Andy said, external light is a MUSt have for using the 200x mag.

I have one of those USB LED lights (the ones that have the bendy metal stem if that makes sence).

One thing I have noticed is that you can't move the supplied 'petri dish' around very much in the 60 or 200x mag due to the small shroud at the base of the scope, I have been temped to dremel this off but I only use teh supplied petri dish occaisonly.

I DID however by a pack of slides with a concave centre to them to at least keep what I'm looking at on teh slide. Still has its issues if the creature your looking at moves a lot though.

I think for the $$$ its an ideal scope but as Andy said you do get what you paid for.

It does me fine for what I want and its a damn site cheaper than the $300 for a decent disecting scope.

HTH but probably not

PaulG
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Postby mpedersen » Mon Oct 06, 2008 11:34 pm

Yes, I use a bright LED flashlight to side light my subjects..sometimes it pays off, sometimes it doesn't. I've found, especially at high magnification (200X) I have better luck getting a general focus, and then pressing down on or pushing up on the stage with gentle pressure to acheive fine focus.

Considering what the alternative costs (something I simply can't personally afford) the QX5 gets the job done.

FWIW,

Matt
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Postby "Umm, fish?" » Tue Oct 07, 2008 12:56 am

Don't get me wrong, Matt. You do an amazing job with your 'scope. My problem was that the threads got so sloppy very quickly such that I had to hold the stage up constantly. So, I was holding the stage with one hand, holding the flashlight with the other hand, manipulating the specimen container to get the animal under the lens with the other hand, and clicking the mouse to take pictures with my other hand.

Not too surprising that it got very frustrating very quickly.

Once the threads stripped out I never got another in-focus image.
Andy

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Postby Jaysn » Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:54 pm

Thanks everyone! I'll look into some supplemental lighting, I have a bunch of new LEDs I've been looking for an excuse to wire into something :) I can see the stage wearing out quickly too, I'll have to tinker around with it and see if there's any way to reinforce/rebuild it to make it a little sturdier. Maybe replacing the threads with some routed acrylic or even brass. Heh, a steampunk microscope would be a neat mod.
~Jayson
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Postby BrianPlankis » Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:50 am

I've used the QX5 as well and while I managed to get some good pictures once in a while, I finally gave up and purchased a better hobbyist level microscope.

During the time I used it though, I developed some tips for the QX5:

Getting the most from a Digital Blue QX5 Microscope

I recently purchased the MFL-85 scope and after only two uses I would say it is better than the QX5, considerably so by some measures. I will be reviewing the MFL-85 over time in this thread:

http://www.projectdibs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2060

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