How exciting! I just got a digital microscope from the Curiosity shop in the Singapore Science Centre!
I saw it a couple of weeks ago, but was hesitant to get it. Other than the fact that it’s a cool gadget to have, what else could I use it for? It wasn’t that cheap either. It costs SGD$69. But I’ve been researching over the past days, and found that even though it is an item with an unknown brand, there are quite a number of very good reviews online. The biggest draw factor was the fact it is capable of capturing very sharp images despite its resolution of 640 x 480 pixels.
Not bad actually.
So after many days of deliberation, I finally got it.
Here’s the box:
Don’t be fooled by the packaging. The other side of the box says that it’s a wireless microscope that allows you to connect your Android/iPhone to it by wifi. It seems that the Singapore Science Centre only carries the USB-cable version.
The irony is that even though the box says that it’s compatible with Windows, I’ve had problems getting it to work on a Windows 7 PC. Surprisingly, it works perfectly fine on my Macbook Air. There’s no need to install drivers, and I can simply open up Mac OS X’s build-in Photobooth app.
Essentially, this is just a generic webcam with a microscope lens and an LED lamp attached to it. So it’ll work with any program that can open up feeds from a webcam. You could skype with this too!
Here’s a screenshot of it working perfectly fine on my Mac:
Over the past few days, I’ve been exploring the world around me with great curiosity. What would things look like under the microscope?
Well, I certainly had lots of fun. Here’s what I’ve found!
Here’s a close-up of my coaster (made of acrylic and copper):
Here’s a close-up of my fountain pen nib:
Here’s a close-up of my jeans:
The same jeans at 500x magnification:
Here’s a close-up of my t-shirt:
The same t-shirt at 500x magnification:
Here’s a close up of a line that I drew on a piece of paper:
The same line at 500x magnification:
500x magnification of my handphone’s screen. The red, green and blue are sub-pixels that form one single pixel on the screen. To the naked eye, it appears as the colour, white! The dark little patch on the upper-right hand corner is a part of the letter “C”.
This is how a fingernail looks like at 500x:
A close up of my arm:
The Macbook’s Command key at 500x:
Here’s a close-up of a half-eaten cookie!
This is a close up of a Singapore $10 note. The letters, “MAS,” are repeated over and over to create the shadow underneath the “10” on the note.
Here’s a close-up of the Singapore 20 cent coin. The lion looks more like a gargoyle.
This is a 500x close-up of a sticker featuring a brown illustrated cat.
A close-up of the Malaysian 20 cent coin.
The same coin at 500x magnification.
At 500x, this rubber band looks really gross.
Zooming in on my camera’s lens.
My camera’s leather strap, at 500x:
The microscopic world is a very strange place!