So today, we're going to learn about microscopes and repair. It's really important to go over this before you decide to go and buy your microscope because there's
a lot of misinformation online as well as tons of pre-made kits that are not very good and make you feel like you wasted your money.
Why use a Microscope for Electronics Repair?
There is nothing like learning to repair devices with a microscope from day one. Having instant visual feedback and the ability to see down to the core circuits or material give
you an unparalleled perspective on your daily repairs. Whether you do standard level 2 component repair, display refurbishing, or motherboard repair, there is nothing like
being able to examine what your working on closer, to bring you to a better understanding of the problem.
Ask yourself the following:
Have you ever wanted to show a customer the true cause of an issue? Up Close?
Have you ever messed something up and couldn't figure it out or just couldn't do the job because you couldn't see it?
Have you ever wished you could look closer at the ACT connections of a display up close?
Have you ever wanted to fix an issue caused by someone else but couldn't see well enough, but knew you could fix it with the right tools?
Have you ever just wanted to see more!?
Then you want a microscope on your desk!
Microscope Pre-purchase Knowledge
What types of Optics should I be looking for to do Electronics Repair?
The number one question you need to ask yourself is, do you want to see and show the problem, or do you want to fix the problem?
|Small Hand Monocular Magnifier||Desk Sized Magnifier||Digital Monocular Scope||Stereo Microscope|
|Justin's thoughts||These small hand magnifiers as well as the most basic
of hand lenses can easily be used in many situations,
especially for the repair tech on the road. Can help you
see something in a pinch, but will be the most basic and
and a cheap way to get some better optics on problems.
These are the "better than nothing" options
|Great to have these types of magnifiers on your desk if you
want a slightly better look into your level 2 work. Harder to
miss details when they are 5x bigger!
|Digital Monocular Microscopes can be a great inspection
an asset to a shop to help clients understand complex issues
that are too small to see normally. These are recommended for
front desk inspection only
|Stereo Microscopes are the current phone
repair endgame microscope, there are lots
of ways to implement them as you can mix
and match bases and other optics easily!
|Limitations||These are for the most basic situations where you just need
to see something. You will not be able to use these and
work at the same time. If your a shop, maybe just keep
one at the front counter or in the drawers if you don't have
|These are great for level 2 basic repair work, but its limits
become apparent as soon as you try to get a real good close
look directly at a circuit board. Maybe this will be fine for
older through-hole solder jobs, but it absolutely won't cut
it for anything "cutting edge" or anything really considered
|While these seem very cool, they are not great to work
under as they do not provide any sense of depth perception
and will introduce a whole list of other issues. Being able
to see solder change phases might become much harder,
as well as the lag between process and screen might
cause you to overcorrect and damage something. These
types of microscopes are not recommended for any real
|Based on the modularity of stereo microscopes
It's hard to put limitations on this style of optics.
If you want to move it around easy, fine. If you
want to stream to youtube, also easy. want to
custom mount yours? nothings stopping you.
Current stereo microscopes are built to adapt!
Read more in the section below.
|Small Hand Magnifier||Desk Sized Magnifier||Digital Monocular Scope||Stereo Microscope|
|I want to see the problem||X||X||X||X|
|I want to See or Show The Problem||X||X||X|
|I want to fix basic things with a better view||X||X|
|I want to fix motherboards and be the best
like no one ever was.
So as per the chart, the Small Hand Monocular Magnifier, the Desk Sized Magnifier and the Digital Monocular Scope all are just made as is, and don't have any sort of
modification on their user's usage, but the stereo microscope has a lot of modularity and adaptability which we will now go over. Its super great to know the next bit
of information as it could save you a lot of headaches and money down the road if you get the correct configuration now.
Stereo Microscopes come in many shapes and sizes and can be super confusing to the new user who doesn't understand which configurations fit the repair industry.
For the purpose of this document we can say that the stereo microscope can be broken down into 2 main sections, the head and the body, which each having its
own accessory components that we will go over.
When it comes to Stereo heads there are three main types to choose from: the binocular head, the trinocular head, and finally, and ultimately.. the simufocal trinocular head.
Understanding the different types of heads to stereo microscope
As stated above, there are three types of heads for a stereo microscope in regards to repair.
|These heads have 2 eyelets and the only way to attach
a camera is to block both eyelets and attach an eyelet
camera. in my opinion, this is a waste of money and
should never ever be purchased for repair purposes as
the upgrade pathway for this type of gear is so small and
cheap, you shouldn't consider bottoming out on it.
|Trinocular heads are amazing, they have a third
port on the top that allows you to switch between
the left eye and the trinocular port on the top where
you would attach a microscope camera that was
meant to be taking video while you work. Which
you cannot do while one eye is shut. Its not feasible
or ok to do in a repair shop.
|Now... this is the head you want from the jump, it
allows you to see in both eyelets and use a third
trinocular port to view or record video! All at the
same time! Enough said!This is the best stereo
microscope head unit to purchase if you just want
to get the one that will last you and has all the
features. I actually don't even recommend you waste
your time with either of the two types listed above this
unless there some sort of crazy deal.
|Can see in stereo||X||X||X|
|Can attach a camera||X||X|
|Can use Camera + Both Eyes||X|
|Should you buy this kind?||No||No||Yes|
|Why?||Can never upgrade and cost is too close to the better one
No point to buy this unless you never ever EVER want to
share your work with anyone without some sort or
weird 3d printed phone holder to go into the eyelet.
Seems like you should just spend the slightly extra now
and get something you can show your work with!
|Can never upgrade and cost is too close to the better simufocal
one Also what kind of torture is it to want to take a video to
show your friends or for your business and when you
do your unable to work because you lose one eye!
|You can do it all, and you don't waste time or money!
Easy to attach a camera and share content which
will allow you to make awesome ads for your company
or to document your work for social media or
quality control. Could even help show a client an issue!
Deciding which microscope base is right for you.
Small-Medium Metal Rework station base
Articulating arm base
Large boom stand base
Setting up your new stereo microscope for repair.
Understanding each part
|The Light Ring|
|The Reduction Lens|
|The Eye Pieces|
|The Barlow Lens|
|The Focusing Rack|
Building your base
Installing the focusing rack
Installing the head
Installing the Light Ring
Calibrating the eye distance
Calibrating the working distance
Microscope Camera Set Up
What's the deal with microscope cameras?
Setting up a microscope camera
Whats the deal with all the reduction lens types?
How to record with the camera
Free editing programs to edit video!
How do you see, all i see is a little white light moving around.