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edited January 2016 Posted in » Nikon D5100 Forum
I want to take photos using the extra tube on my microscope. I bought an adapter and hooked it to the camera and it slid into the microscope with ease. I can see the image on the screen when I use real time, but I can't get the camera set up to take a picture. Auto doesn't work because there is "no lens in the camera." I've tried several random settings and some of them allow the camera to fire with very slow shutter speed but nothing appears in the photo que. I am clueless and would love some advice. The adapter is from Amscope and has 2x on it.


  • edited January 2016
    You must use only manual mode for this setup. It will be pretty difficult to get the exposure just right, but once you have it, it should be pretty good, or at least as good as the microscope can provide.

    I have an older adapter with no internal magnification, which I use mainly with typesetting lenses for macro use, but which also does serve on a microscope. How this compares with the 2X version I can't be quite sure.

    What you get will depend greatly on what light you can get on or through your subject, and what objective you're using. I would suggest first of all that whatever you try, you start with the lowest power objective you have, and try to get as much light as you can get. You should be able then to focus with the camera, which may not be quite the same focal position as you get with the regular eyepiece in the microscope.

    It's easier to use live view on this for focusing, but remember that live view uses its own metering for the view. It not only compensates for aperture, but it completely disregards shutter speed. A good exposure in the viewfinder does not automatically mean the image exposure is right.

    With a very clear slide, a sub stage light, and a very low power objective, I get a pretty decent exposure at 1/50 and ISO 100. When things get dim and the power goes up, exposure time can go up to several seconds. For very dark or dense things you might have to go quite long. Use the self timer, or the infrared remote so as not to jiggle.

    Enable the "overview" playback option in the playback menu, so that you can see the exposure histogram after a picture attempt. Underexposure will crowd all the vertical information to the left, and overexposure will crowd it to the right. You want to find an exposure that puts as much as possible between the edges, with what you want to show as middle tone, or gray, in the middle.

    Link is to an image I took just a while ago. It's a plain microscope, on which I have a very low powered objective of the sort one might use for dissection. The histogram shows this as somewhat underexposed, and I took no care with the light, which glares a little, nor much care, obviously, with the focus.

    edit to add: by the way, that's a penny. Cold light and microscope would require some color correction to get the copper color right.
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