Larry Legg's Learner Projects
Project 1- Preparation for this course.

Watch out for these symbols in my projects!
A good idea
Use household stuff
The right way!
You can skip this if yer don't want details! 
A secret unlocked!

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Image quality 
First of all, remember that the quality of images here are inferior to what you actually get by eye or on film with the SP03 mic. Why? Well several reasons but most of all a digital camera can't 'see' as good as your eye, and second - all images here are using  compression,  which loses detail,  to present then to you over the internet in such a way so as to keep file-size and loading times down. 

This first one I took of a flea at about 100x magnification. 

The light is a bit uneven cos (because) of the flourescent lamp I used. Remember that you can't focus a microscope on all the things at different depths in the slide all at once. Here, I focused mostly midway, so parts of the flea above or below this arbitrarily chosen depth will be slightly blurred. In real life yer can simply use the SP03's coarse and fine focus at will get to see everything in focus. 

How good is this compared to a more expensive microscope? 
Well, its pretty good - especially for the money! I have a Zeiss Microscope too - and the lenses do give a better image. Problem is - my zeiss costs over a thousand pounds! For most microscopy work - yer don't need super-duper high quality lenses costing hundreds to thousands of pounds just for the lens itself. What you need is a compromise of price, features, optics, and something overall that is affordable. Start basic... see how you get on - before moving on to more specialized work where better quality optics might prove worth-while. 

The optics in the Brunel SP03 are good enough for our projects here or else I wouldn't be using this scope for me projects.  

Let's look at another slide which has more detail... 
This is a section through a leaf (whoops, can't remember which one now - but it doesn't matter). Sometimes when there is a lot of 'white-space' in a slide specimen - that is... lots of holes and spaces where light passes through - it can be difficult to get a crisp image with the camera. So much light hitting a digital camera ccd,  plays havoc with the auto-light level adjustments! 

You can see at 100x magnification, the Brunel SP03 shows up all the cells and their structures... 

At 400x, the same leaf section looks like this (below)  through the SP03. Pretty good huh? The optics are fading out a wee bit towards the corners where the optics are struggling and failing to keep things in sharp focus. Does it matter? No not really! Unless you are David Bailey of the microscopy world, and want to publish the best images since old Dave snapped Christine Keeler on a simple chair, the resolution here over 80 to 90% of the image is good enough for what you need! 

Right then, that's me project preparation over. Yer need a microscope to follow my projects. If yer want to get good and follow me, it ain't such a bad idea to get your SP03 now from the on-line shop so you are ready to follow the first main project next month. What will we be covering?  

We're gonna be doing the different ways you can illuminate different specimens to get the best out of looking at them. I'm not saying more than that right now but be there so yer can see a bit of magic at the mic using nothing but improvisation and cheap materials. You guessed it: I aint rich neither :-) 

All the best...
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