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Re: Frez...Question?

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  • charles.2211
    Hi Frez, Great detailed description. Amazed at all the work that goes into one of your shots. Will you post a before and after shot of one of the diatom
    Message 1 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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      Hi Frez,

      Great detailed description. Amazed at all the work that goes into one of your shots. Will you post a before and after shot of one of the diatom pictures to show the difference between a raw shot and after it's been stacked and photoshopped? Is your camera mounted directly to the microscope via photo tube or is it suspended over it?

      Thanks again,
      Charles

      --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hi Charles
      >
      > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
      > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
      > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
      >
      > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
      > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
      > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
      >
      > The imaging procedure is as follows:
      > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
      > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
      > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
      > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
      > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
      > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
      > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
      > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
      > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
      > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
      >
      > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
      >
      > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
      >
      > Thanks
      > Frez
      >
      > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
      > >
      > > Hi Frez,
      > >
      > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
      > >
      > > Your pictures are so amazing.
      > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
      > >
      > > Thanks,
      > > Charles
      > >
      >
    • lightsurfer2
      Hi Frez, I too just wanted to say thanks for sharing details of your equipment and methods. I am on the verge of purchasing a new DSLR camera, and your post is
      Message 2 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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        Hi Frez,

        I too just wanted to say thanks for sharing details of your equipment and methods. I am on the verge of purchasing a new DSLR camera, and your post is helpful. I am finally going to replace my Coolpix 5000 and Periplan eyepiece setup with something having more capability. Although exciting, I'm also sort of dreading the necessary trial and error that always seems to be part of any significant changes to my "kit".

        cheers,
        Howard

        --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi Charles
        >
        > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
        > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
        > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
        >
        > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
        > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
        > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
        >
        > The imaging procedure is as follows:
        > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
        > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
        > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
        > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
        > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
        > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
        > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
        > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
        > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
        > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
        >
        > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
        >
        > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
        >
        > Thanks
        > Frez
        >
        > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
        > >
        > > Hi Frez,
        > >
        > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
        > >
        > > Your pictures are so amazing.
        > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
        > >
        > > Thanks,
        > > Charles
        > >
        >
      • danrx66@frontier.com
        Hi lightsurfer2 Consider the Canon t3i 18mp DSLR. Especially the EOS utility that comes with it. I have the camera on the suggestion of Charles Krebs and am
        Message 3 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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          Hi lightsurfer2
          Consider the Canon t3i 18mp DSLR. Especially the EOS utility that comes with it. I have the camera on the suggestion of Charles Krebs and am very satisfied.
          Dan

          --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Frez,
          >
          > I too just wanted to say thanks for sharing details of your equipment and methods. I am on the verge of purchasing a new DSLR camera, and your post is helpful. I am finally going to replace my Coolpix 5000 and Periplan eyepiece setup with something having more capability. Although exciting, I'm also sort of dreading the necessary trial and error that always seems to be part of any significant changes to my "kit".
          >
          > cheers,
          > Howard
          >
          > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
          > >
          > > Hi Charles
          > >
          > > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
          > > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
          > > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
          > >
          > > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
          > > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
          > > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
          > >
          > > The imaging procedure is as follows:
          > > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
          > > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
          > > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
          > > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
          > > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
          > > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
          > > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
          > > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
          > > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
          > > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
          > >
          > > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
          > >
          > > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
          > >
          > > Thanks
          > > Frez
          > >
          > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
          > > >
          > > > Hi Frez,
          > > >
          > > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
          > > >
          > > > Your pictures are so amazing.
          > > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
          > > >
          > > > Thanks,
          > > > Charles
          > > >
          > >
          >
        • Frez
          Hi Charles The camera/relay combo slips into a 23mm trinoc port. An eyepiece tube could be used, but due to the weight it s not a good idea. This folder...
          Message 4 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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            Hi Charles

            The camera/relay combo slips into a 23mm trinoc port. An eyepiece tube could be used, but due to the weight it's not a good idea.

            This folder...
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/91450255/pic/list
            ...has 28 images ready to be stacked. It also has the specimen after stacking but before processing and finally the finished image.

            For anyone wanting to play around with stacking software, Helicon Focus and CombineZP are available. HF has a 30 day trial and CombineZP is freeware. You can use the 28 images in the folder. PIC00001 is the high focus and is the recommended first image in the stack. PIC00028 would be the last.

            http://www.heliconsoft.com/
            http://www.hadleyweb.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/CZP/Installation.htm

            Have fun
            Frez

            --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hi Frez,
            >
            > Great detailed description. Amazed at all the work that goes into one of your shots. Will you post a before and after shot of one of the diatom pictures to show the difference between a raw shot and after it's been stacked and photoshopped? Is your camera mounted directly to the microscope via photo tube or is it suspended over it?
            >
            > Thanks again,
            > Charles
            >
            > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
            >
            > > Hi Charles
            > >
            > > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
            > > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
            > > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
            > >
            > > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
            > > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
            > > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
            > >
            > > The imaging procedure is as follows:
            > > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
            > > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
            > > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
            > > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
            > > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
            > > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
            > > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
            > > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
            > > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
            > > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
            > >
            > > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
            > >
            > > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
            > >
            > > Thanks
            > > Frez
            > >
            > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
            > > >
            > > > Hi Frez,
            > > >
            > > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
            > > >
            > > > Your pictures are so amazing.
            > > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
            > > >
            > > > Thanks,
            > > > Charles
            > > >
            > >
            >
          • Frez
            Hi Howard Congrats! You should do really well, but the trial and error thing can be a bear. I once hooked up a Finepix S602 to a scope and was derailed for 3
            Message 5 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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              Hi Howard

              Congrats! You should do really well, but the trial and error thing can be a bear. I once hooked up a Finepix S602 to a scope and was derailed for 3 days just trying to figure it out. You could say I'm f-stop stupid. :)

              Good luck
              Frez

              --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@...> wrote:
              >
              > Hi Frez,
              >
              > I too just wanted to say thanks for sharing details of your equipment and methods. I am on the verge of purchasing a new DSLR camera, and your post is helpful. I am finally going to replace my Coolpix 5000 and Periplan eyepiece setup with something having more capability. Although exciting, I'm also sort of dreading the necessary trial and error that always seems to be part of any significant changes to my "kit".
              >
              > cheers,
              > Howard
              >
              > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
              > >
              > > Hi Charles
              > >
              > > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
              > > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
              > > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
              > >
              > > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
              > > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
              > > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
              > >
              > > The imaging procedure is as follows:
              > > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
              > > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
              > > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
              > > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
              > > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
              > > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
              > > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
              > > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
              > > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
              > > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
              > >
              > > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
              > >
              > > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
              > >
              > > Thanks
              > > Frez
              > >
              > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
              > > >
              > > > Hi Frez,
              > > >
              > > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
              > > >
              > > > Your pictures are so amazing.
              > > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
              > > >
              > > > Thanks,
              > > > Charles
              > > >
              > >
              >
            • Frez
              One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change
              Message 6 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
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                One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!

                Frez
              • charles.2211
                Frez, Amazing work! Even just the stacked image before the PS looks good. I didn t think you would have used an eyepeice for the camera but the trinoc. Just
                Message 7 of 17 , Nov 1, 2012
                • 0 Attachment
                  Frez, Amazing work! Even just the stacked image before the PS looks good. I didn't think you would have used an eyepeice for the camera but the trinoc. Just had heard that if the camera is mounted directly to the photo tube, that vibration from the shutter could impact the image. So a lot of folks use a separate stand for the camera positioned over the photo tube without touching it. But it doesn't seem to have had any effect on your images.

                  You seem to have a superb technique and process in your pictures.
                  Thank you again,
                  Charles

                  --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Hi Charles
                  >
                  > The camera/relay combo slips into a 23mm trinoc port. An eyepiece tube could be used, but due to the weight it's not a good idea.
                  >
                  > This folder...
                  > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/91450255/pic/list
                  > ...has 28 images ready to be stacked. It also has the specimen after stacking but before processing and finally the finished image.
                  >
                  > For anyone wanting to play around with stacking software, Helicon Focus and CombineZP are available. HF has a 30 day trial and CombineZP is freeware. You can use the 28 images in the folder. PIC00001 is the high focus and is the recommended first image in the stack. PIC00028 would be the last.
                  >
                  > http://www.heliconsoft.com/
                  > http://www.hadleyweb.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/CZP/Installation.htm
                  >
                  > Have fun
                  > Frez
                  >
                  > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Hi Frez,
                  > >
                  > > Great detailed description. Amazed at all the work that goes into one of your shots. Will you post a before and after shot of one of the diatom pictures to show the difference between a raw shot and after it's been stacked and photoshopped? Is your camera mounted directly to the microscope via photo tube or is it suspended over it?
                  > >
                  > > Thanks again,
                  > > Charles
                  > >
                  > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > > Hi Charles
                  > > >
                  > > > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
                  > > > http://www.olympusmicro.com/primer/digitalimaging/olympusdp10.html
                  > > > It's 15 year old technology, but does show that a 1.3 MP imaging sensor is practical. There are plenty of times I yearn for a large MP DSLR though.
                  > > >
                  > > > The biggest stumbling block was finding an appropriate relay lens. Like high end objectives, "it's all about the glass". After years I finally have two workable solutions.
                  > > > 1. Optem SC67 .67x (this was used for all pics in the folder)
                  > > > 2. Nikon zoom .90x to 2.25x. This is a beast of a lens that weighs 1.75 pounds. The glass is superb, but the lowest setting of .90x is a bit too big for the 2/3" sensor for everyday use. It crops the image too much, but can maintain sharpness up to about 1.25x.
                  > > >
                  > > > The imaging procedure is as follows:
                  > > > Capture the appropriate number of images for stacking. I have learned to be very patient here and take from 20 to 40 images always focusing by eye using the smallest increments possible. The images go to Helicon Focus for stacking. (method A, default settings except for "smoothing" set to 1) Save as .tif and open in Photoshop for processing as follows:
                  > > > 1. Crop image with "Rectangular Marquee Tool" cut and paste to "new" image window. Flatten image.
                  > > > 2. Select the background with "Magic Wand Tool". This is tricky and requires practice. Keep tolerance low and keep adding to the selection by holding down the shift key. If it spills into the specimen select "Undo" and lower the tolerance. Sometimes staying off the specimen is all but impossible so I will make tedious edge corrections with the "Lasso Tool". When used with the shift key it adds to the selection and with the alt key it subtracts. When finished:
                  > > > 3. From the "Select" menu select "Modify" "Feather" and apply feathering at 1 pixel for smoothing of the background selection edge.
                  > > > 4: Next apply a "Gaussian Blur" from the "Filter" menu. I usually set the blur at 4 or 5 pixels. This makes the specimen POP off the background. When finished select "Deselect" from the "Select" menu.
                  > > > 5. Now do a "Levels" adjustment being careful not to over do it.
                  > > > 6. Next is "Unsharp Mask". This can vary, but I stay between .5 and 1 pixel, 35 to 75 amount and 0 threshold.
                  > > > 7. Add contrast if necessary.
                  > > > 8. Save file in a lossless format like .bmp and open in Micam for a scale bar and measurements. (Micam does not read .tif)
                  > > > 9. Reopen in PS for annotation and save in .psd format in case changes in ID need to be made later.
                  > > >
                  > > > My scope of choice for imaging has been the Olympus BHA. (for now) Installed on the 5 place nosepiece are a Nikon 100x 1.4, Nikon phase DLL 1.25, B&L 40x 1.0, Leitz 54x .95, and Leitz 95x 1.32. All require oil. The condenser is an Oly APL/ACH 1.4 or a phase turret. I scan the slide with the 40x. Often the setup is oiled to the same slide for 3 or 4 days. I use high viscosity oil for both the condenser and objective. With objectives the high viscosity doesn't spread too much on the cover slip or drip off the other objectives when they're not in use.
                  > > >
                  > > > Unfortunately the DP-10 may have a failing sensor. The upper right hand corner is darkening. :( I have a non-working DP-12, but I'm afraid Olympus repair will sock it to me. It's probably time to find out.
                  > > >
                  > > > Thanks
                  > > > Frez
                  > > >
                  > > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "charles.2211" <charles.2211@> wrote:
                  > > > >
                  > > > > Hi Frez,
                  > > > >
                  > > > > Just interested in know what your set up is for taking your diatom pictures. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Microscope/photos/album/70143336/pic/1392313422/view?picmode=&mode=tn&order=mtime&start=1&count=20&dir=desc
                  > > > >
                  > > > > Your pictures are so amazing.
                  > > > > Microscope, camera, software? Can you give us a picture and description?
                  > > > >
                  > > > > Thanks,
                  > > > > Charles
                  > > > >
                  > > >
                  > >
                  >
                • lightsurfer2
                  Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to
                  Message 8 of 17 , Nov 2, 2012
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                    Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...

                    All thoughts, comments much appreciated!

                    cheers,
                    Howard

                    --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                    >
                    > Frez
                    >
                  • lightsurfer2
                    Hi Dan, Thanks for your suggestion... the T3i is definitely on my short list . With the current price you can find it for, it s very attractive! I m also
                    Message 9 of 17 , Nov 2, 2012
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                      Hi Dan,

                      Thanks for your suggestion... the T3i is definitely on my "short list". With the current price you can find it for, it's very attractive! I'm also looking at a couple of Sony models with "translucent mirror technology" that also come highly recommended, but they are somewhat more expensive. I am wide open to any and all suggestions and comments on this, before I lay my money down. I've waited a long time for this purchase, and want to make a good decision.

                      cheers,
                      Howard

                      --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "danrx66@..." <danbd1943@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Hi lightsurfer2
                      > Consider the Canon t3i 18mp DSLR. Especially the EOS utility that comes with it. I have the camera on the suggestion of Charles Krebs and am very satisfied.
                      > Dan
                      >
                      > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Hi Frez,
                      > >
                      > > I too just wanted to say thanks for sharing details of your equipment and methods. I am on the verge of purchasing a new DSLR camera, and your post is helpful. I am finally going to replace my Coolpix 5000 and Periplan eyepiece setup with something having more capability. Although exciting, I'm also sort of dreading the necessary trial and error that always seems to be part of any significant changes to my "kit".
                      > >
                      > > cheers,
                      > > Howard
                      > >
                      > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                      > > >
                      > > > Hi Charles
                      > > >
                      > > > The camera is an Olympus DP-10.
                      > > >
                    • Frez
                      You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I ve never had a DSLR and didn t think it through. Canon was always on my short list, but I
                      Message 10 of 17 , Nov 2, 2012
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                        You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.

                        Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?

                        Frez

                        --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                        >
                        > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                        >
                        > cheers,
                        > Howard
                        >
                        > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                        > >
                        > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                        > >
                        > > Frez
                        > >
                        >
                      • a_fribourg
                        May I offer a suggestion? I fiddled around with DSLRs isolated from the scope. There is still some blurring due to mirror slap and front curtain shutter
                        Message 11 of 17 , Nov 2, 2012
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                          May I offer a suggestion? I fiddled around with DSLRs isolated from the scope. There is still some blurring due to mirror slap and front curtain shutter movement. I eventually hooked up my new Sony A77, which has no moving mirror and set it to use the electronic 1st curtain shutter. Great pictures but overkill. I researched a bit and came up with (and bought) the Sony NEX 5N. Advantages: Mirrorless; Electronic 1st curtain shutter; 16MP; Raw and/or JPEG capture; Excellent low light (high ISO) performance and falling prices since the new NEX 5R was introduced. Also there are very inexpensive IR remotes available on eBay. And it can be mounted directly to the scope with no degradation of the image. Also it connects via HDMI to any comparable monitor so no more splitting the light between viewing and photographing. All the exposure parameters are on screen.
                          So may I suggest the Sony NEX 5N as an excellent camera for photomicrography?
                          Alan
                          --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.
                          >
                          > Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?
                          >
                          > Frez
                          >
                          > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                          > >
                          > > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                          > >
                          > > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                          > >
                          > > cheers,
                          > > Howard
                          > >
                          > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                          > > >
                          > > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                          > > >
                          > > > Frez
                          > > >
                          > >
                          >
                        • Daniel
                          I think it works like this. Please correct me if I am wrong: With your camera with no lens, on the phototube, the only focussing needed is to parfocal with
                          Message 12 of 17 , Nov 3, 2012
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                            I think it works like this. Please correct me if I am wrong:

                            With your camera with no lens, on the phototube, the only focussing needed is to parfocal with the viewing ocular(s). You only need to refocus the camera/phototube if you change the relay lens.

                            There is no need for automatic focus there, a it is fixed in one position. The focus for the image is done on the microscope focus.

                            Canon dslr cameras can be controlled from the computer with Canon Utilities software supplied with the camera or downloaded from Canon's website.
                            Liveview function allows direct viewing on your computer screen, where you can check the focussing live (Remote control window). and also control the camera functions.
                            The mirror is up, the mechanical shutter is open,the sensor is relaying the image to your computer sceen. the electronic shutter
                            is waiting to be fired. In this mode there are no moving parts during exposure, and vibrations are avoided.

                            Danny

                            --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.
                            >
                            > Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?
                            >
                            > Frez
                            >
                            > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                            > >
                            > > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                            > >
                            > > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                            > >
                            > > cheers,
                            > > Howard
                            > >
                            > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                            > > >
                            > > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                            > > >
                            > > > Frez
                            > > >
                            > >
                            >
                          • lightsurfer2
                            Thanks for your explanation, Danny. It makes the point I was trying to point out... the Helicon Remote (automated focus stepping and image acquisition)
                            Message 13 of 17 , Nov 3, 2012
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                              Thanks for your explanation, Danny. It makes the point I was trying to point out... the Helicon Remote (automated focus stepping and image acquisition) software that we were discussing doesn't work if you have no auto-focus front lens mounted on the camera. Without a front lens, focus will still have to be done "step-by-step" manually at the microscope, with individual images for the "image stack" acquired using a computer interface, remote control, etc.

                              My main point was how this software might relate to my choice of a new DSLR camera brand, as Helicon Remote will only work with certain brands and models. But, since it won't work with even the supported cameras if they don't have a front lens installed (which is how I will use my new DSLR), in my particular case it will not be important to my decision on which camera to purchase.

                              That said, it sounds like a great solution for acquiring image stacks when shooting in a more traditional "macro" mode using a front camera lens.

                              cheers,
                              Howard

                              --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Daniel" <ferridaniel2000@...> wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > I think it works like this. Please correct me if I am wrong:
                              >
                              > With your camera with no lens, on the phototube, the only focussing needed is to parfocal with the viewing ocular(s). You only need to refocus the camera/phototube if you change the relay lens.
                              >
                              > There is no need for automatic focus there, a it is fixed in one position. The focus for the image is done on the microscope focus.
                              >
                              > Canon dslr cameras can be controlled from the computer with Canon Utilities software supplied with the camera or downloaded from Canon's website.
                              > Liveview function allows direct viewing on your computer screen, where you can check the focussing live (Remote control window). and also control the camera functions.
                              > The mirror is up, the mechanical shutter is open,the sensor is relaying the image to your computer sceen. the electronic shutter
                              > is waiting to be fired. In this mode there are no moving parts during exposure, and vibrations are avoided.
                              >
                              > Danny
                              >
                              > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                              > >
                              > > You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.
                              > >
                              > > Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?
                              > >
                              > > Frez
                              > >
                              > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                              > > >
                              > > > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                              > > >
                              > > > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                              > > >
                              > > > cheers,
                              > > > Howard
                              > > >
                              > > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                              > > > >
                              > > > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                              > > > >
                              > > > > Frez
                              > > > >
                              > > >
                              > >
                              >
                            • Tony
                              Danny, I use the EOS 1000D in just the setup that you describe. I use a usb footswitch to fire the shutter. The only part that is different is that with the
                              Message 14 of 17 , Nov 3, 2012
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                                Danny,

                                I use the EOS 1000D in just the setup that you describe. I use a usb footswitch to fire the shutter. The only part that is different is that with the 1000D at least, there is still some sort of mechanical shutter action. Not sure why, and I've not seen any problems that I would put down to it, but that's what it does: clunk!


                                regards

                                Tony

                                Reading UK

                                --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Daniel" <ferridaniel2000@...> wrote:
                                >
                                >
                                > I think it works like this. Please correct me if I am wrong:
                                >
                                > With your camera with no lens, on the phototube, the only focussing needed is to parfocal with the viewing ocular(s). You only need to refocus the camera/phototube if you change the relay lens.
                                >
                                > There is no need for automatic focus there, a it is fixed in one position. The focus for the image is done on the microscope focus.
                                >
                                > Canon dslr cameras can be controlled from the computer with Canon Utilities software supplied with the camera or downloaded from Canon's website.
                                > Liveview function allows direct viewing on your computer screen, where you can check the focussing live (Remote control window). and also control the camera functions.
                                > The mirror is up, the mechanical shutter is open,the sensor is relaying the image to your computer sceen. the electronic shutter
                                > is waiting to be fired. In this mode there are no moving parts during exposure, and vibrations are avoided.
                                >
                                > Danny
                                >
                                > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                                > >
                                > > You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.
                                > >
                                > > Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?
                                > >
                                > > Frez
                                > >
                                > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                                > > >
                                > > > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                                > > >
                                > > > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                                > > >
                                > > > cheers,
                                > > > Howard
                                > > >
                                > > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                                > > > >
                                > > > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                                > > > >
                                > > > > Frez
                                > > > >
                                > > >
                                > >
                                >
                              • lightsurfer2
                                Hi Frez, That s my experience too... all of my microscope based digital photography up to now has been done using various models in the Nikon Coolpix line.
                                Message 15 of 17 , Nov 3, 2012
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                                  Hi Frez,

                                  That's my experience too... all of my microscope based digital photography up to now has been done using various models in the Nikon Coolpix line. This will be my first DSLR set up.

                                  What I initially have in mind for the relay system, is to use one or another (or a combination) of the pieces I already have. Since my microscope is a 60s era Leitz "kit" with 170mm TL optics, the objectives require compensation with Periplan eyepiece optics for optimum performance. I have several threaded 10x versions... a 30mm GW widefield that I am currently using with the Coolpix 5000, and a 23mm GF version. I also have a couple of Leitz projection lenses (a 3.2x and a 4x), and several different versions of Leitz mounting adapters for 35mm film cameras. The 35mm adapters have reduction lenses (.32x), and were designed to use with a Periplan 10x ocular. I also have some other assorted odds and ends. I am hoping between all of that, and a couple of simple thread adapters, I will be able to come up with something that will work well with whatever camera I decide on.

                                  That's what I meant in an earlier post about dreading the "trial and error"! But the challenge is part of the fun of it too.

                                  cheers,
                                  Howard

                                  --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  > You must be right that a camera lens would have to be in place. I've never had a DSLR and didn't think it through.
                                  >
                                  > Canon was always on my short list, but I have not done any recent research. A desirable feature would be software to operate the camera from a computer. Do you have a relay system in mind?
                                  >
                                  > Frez
                                  >
                                  > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "lightsurfer2" <hlynk@> wrote:
                                  > >
                                  > > Thanks Frez, that might make me lean towards several of the supported Canon models (which are on my short list anyways). A question though... since I intend to mount the camera and direct the image using a relay lens onto the sensor, auto focus (and thus the auto focus stepping) wouldn't work anyway, would it? I'm new to thinking about using a camera without a traditional front lens, so maybe I'm misunderstanding the way things would work. It seems like the software would only work with front lens in place, as in macro mode. The other cameras I'm looking at are several of the newer Sony models (Nex7, A77, A65). I emailed Helicon, and Helicon Remote (their auto focus stepping software) is not supported with any of those. If it doesn't work without a traditional front lens in place, I guess it wouldn't matter which camera I get, as I intend to use it almost entirely without a front lens on my microscope. The Sony models have 24MP on a APS-C size sensor, with little to no mirror vibration issues. Very tempting, but so are the Canon T3i and 60D! Difficult decisions...
                                  > >
                                  > > All thoughts, comments much appreciated!
                                  > >
                                  > > cheers,
                                  > > Howard
                                  > >
                                  > > --- In Microscope@yahoogroups.com, "Frez" <dtetreault61@> wrote:
                                  > > >
                                  > > > One more thing Howard. Helicon Focus has new software that supports certain new DSLRs. It will automatically take pics at preset focus points. It will change the camera's focus depending on how the user sets it up. That sounds cool!
                                  > > >
                                  > > > Frez
                                  > > >
                                  > >
                                  >
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