Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Have questions about the equipment used for macro- or micro- photography? Post those questions in this forum.

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chris_ma
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by chris_ma »

I don't know anything about microscopes but I also like the images a lot, and also the presentation with it's attention to detail (image border, labeling etc)

thanks for sharing them
chris

viktor j nilsson
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Location: Lund, Sweden

Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by viktor j nilsson »

As others have said, you won't be limited by your objectives in terms of resolution and sharpness. Sure, modern top-of-the-line PlanApo and Plan Fluor objectives will have higher contrast and wider fields, but for photography you will hardly see a difference.

You clearly have an eye for photography, so and I am sure you are going to get great results with these. Your rotifer photo looks beautiful. However, I think you may have closed down the condenser aperture a little too much? Try to keep it a bit more open (for increased resolution) and instead increase contrast in post processing.

The next natural step would be to try different illumination techniques.

I see you already have a darkfield condenser. That's great! Darkfield is one of the most beautiful techniques, IMHO.

Oblique is very good and easy to DIY, or buy Saul's seemingly excellent inserts.

The GUF (Gradient Universal Filter) technique is fun and easy to implement. It can produce some really nice images.
Originally described here: viewtopic.php?t=15142
I posted a downloadable .ppt file here: viewtopic.php?p=237263#p237263

I wouldn't spend any serious money on phase contrast equipment for your scope at this stage. I personally don't love the look of phase contrast, but some people (like macro_cosmos) have proven that it is possible to generate beautiful images with PC. However, I would personally rather save the money toward a future DIC microscope, and continue to practice your craft with what you got.

Tonikon
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by Tonikon »

Hi everyone
I heartily thank you for your valuable advice ...
I also think I have lowered the condenser a little too much, probably to increase the depth of field, but diffraction is always lurking.
Next time I will treasure this advice! Your indications on the GUF (Gradient Universal Filter) technique are really stimulating ... I didn't know this possibility at all and now I'm getting to work to build these filters. Do you think can I use transparent acetate sheets for projection on old overhead projectors? I have a decent laser printer and I would like to try ... the results and the infinity possibilities of experimentation of the GNU appeal to me even more than oblique lighting.

Toni

Pau
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by Pau »

... the results and the infinity possibilities of experimentation of the GNU appeal to me even more than oblique lighting.
GNU?
Gradient Universal Filter is oblique illumination although done in an imaginative and very useful way. Be aware of the oblique, phase, Rheinberg or DF plates must be placed at the condenser aperture plane or close to it.

Do you have access to the Berek condenser aperture plane to insert those filters? A priori it seems difficult to me but I don't have a Berek. It is easy with old style Abbe condensers.
Pau

viktor j nilsson
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Location: Lund, Sweden

Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by viktor j nilsson »

Tonikon wrote:
Wed Dec 02, 2020 2:39 am
Do you think can I use transparent acetate sheets for projection on old overhead projectors? I have a decent laser printer and I would like to try ... the results and the infinity possibilities of experimentation of the GNU appeal to me even more than oblique lighting.

Toni
For some combinations of printer/transparent sheets, the color may rub off quite easily, but if so, you can sandwich the printed sheet between two clean acetate sheets. I haven't figured out which ones work best.

Tonikon
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Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2008 2:58 pm
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by Tonikon »

Sorry :oops: ... I got the wrong acronym ... (GNU is an operating system #-o ) ... I should have said GUF.
In fact ... the real problem is that the Berek condenser has no built-in filter holder ... I could build it myself or I could try to place the plate on top of the illuminator. However, I also have a basic achromatic condenser, very simple but still with a two-lenses design. We will have to experiment a lot and rains are expected for the next weekend here in Sicily :D

75RR
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by 75RR »

.
Something nobody has mentioned when extolling the virtues of modern infinity Apos is their astronomical cost, something to bear in mind when weighing up whether to modernize or not.
Zeiss Standard WL & Wild M8
Olympus E-p2 (Micro Four Thirds Camera)

Scarodactyl
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Re: Awakening a Leitz SM microscope

Post by Scarodactyl »

I think that's implied, but it wasn't what he asked. That said, even older leitz apos aren't insanely cheap, and these pictures show why--newer objectives are nice but these are still very good.

And while there have been advances, actually in some cases FoV has shrunk a bit--Nikon used to spec some of theirs out to 26.5mm for instance, but they cut back to 25mm. I don't know how much that has affected the actual engineering though.

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