Recommendation for microscope/lens solution for SMD soldering

Hi,

Does anyone has experience with the suitability of USB microscopes like this one or this one as SMD soldering aid?

Or is it better just getting a magnifying glass ?

Any alternative suggestions appreciated!

Thanks

The latter one looks like one of those cheap endoscopes and 0.3 megapixels is not much at all. I cannot see a focus control which is absolutely critical on anything claiming to be a "microscope". It may be better, but the (possibly older) ones I have are pretty dreadful.

I just use reading glasses from the dollar store. Prescription 3.00

Professionally, large (>6 inches) magnifying glasses, sometimes illuminated, are used. The lucky people get to use a stereo microscope.

I have seen digital cameras used for quality inspections, but never for SMD work. I don't recommend it.

I use an Optivisor for this sort of thing.

Ian.

ian332isport: I use an Optivisor for this sort of thing.

Ian.

They are great but they make you look like a geek.

aarg:
They are great but they make you look like a geek.

Indeed. It’s a ‘special’ look :slight_smile:

aarg: They are great but they make you look like a geek.

You're sitting there fiddling with microcontrollers, software, a soldering iron, solder, components, etc - hunched over a workbench, probably with tools and such strewn about.

You are only the "cool dude" in your mind. To everyone else, you -are- "a geek".

Deal with it, revel in it, then forget the dumbass label and get on with your task.

/better a geek than ignorant...

:D

Yes, but don't forget you have it on and get as far as the parking lot before you realize... true story. It wasn't me. :)

ian332isport: I use an Optivisor for this sort of thing.

Ian.

+1

this is the only magnifier you need. I have really bad eyesight and can solder 0402 quite easily using this magnifier. You can get them from ebay US seller for $13.44 http://www.ebay.com/itm/310695632607?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

How about something like THIS.

Are they any good for this sort of work?

this is the only magnifier you need. I have really bad eyesight and can solder 0402 quite easily using this magnifier. You can get them from ebay US seller for $13.44 http://www.ebay.com/itm/310695632607?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

Wouldn't you prefer if it was illuminated ?

Watcher: How about something like THIS. Are they any good for this sort of work?

I use one of these and also use an eye loupe to fine check joints afterwards. Be aware that the magnifier may get in the way of the soldering iron.

Watcher: Wouldn't you prefer if it was illuminated ?

my work area has plenty illumination. but yes, proper lighting is required. It really helps to work hands free. And the optivisor can be lifted up while you are still wearing it if you don't need to use it. You can also use it with your glasses on. For the price, I don't think anything else can be better.

In addition, I also use a photographer's loupe I had from my old darkroom photography days. I use it to inspect the work more closely after soldering.

like this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/798855-REG/Kalt_NP10158_8x_AGFA_Style_Loupe.html

sample 0402 capacitor soldering I did |370x500

doughboy: http://www.ebay.com/itm/310695632607?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

When quoting an eBay item, lose the question mark and everything following. In other words:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/310695632607 Does the job.

You want geek? Try this: :grinning: |500x500

Watcher: Wouldn't you prefer if it was illuminated ?

No. Useless. Makes it bigger and heavier. I removed the lights on my one. Have a lot of light on the whole workbench. Leo..

Check out dental magnifying glasses. They are da bomb for any close up handwork.

They are da bomb for any close up handwork.

I just wonder how comfy it is to have them on your head all the time. ..

Watcher: I just wonder how comfy it is to have them on your head all the time. ..

Ask the dentist. :grinning:

Soldering is just 1 part. The 2nd part is inspection and is just as important.

I purchased an old stereo microscope 10X - 20X for that purpose off eBay. Never use the microscope for soldering work, just inspection because the soldering fumes will smoke the glass optics and cleaning them of smoke and splattered flux will damage the optic coatings. Bausch-Lomb-Stereo-Zoom