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An overview of the LM microscope adapters
We offer LM digital adapter solutions for the following microscopes
Online configurator: LM microscope adapter for all digital cameras and microscopes
LM adapter solution for c-mount microscope ports with reduction optics (0.5x / 0.6x / 0.7x or f=55mm / f=75mm / f=100mm)
LM Macroscope 24x (15x and 11x) for Focus Stacking: Highest resolution without compromise
LM Macroscope 9x (5x and 3x) for Focus Stacking: Highest resolution without compromise
LM photo microscopes: the flexible photography solution for large sensor cameras!
Macro Close-Up Lens: LM Macro lens 40/80 with plan achromatic optics
Special mounting medium for microscopy, non toxic,water solved,light hardening,fast solidifying and drying,neutraldoes not make air bubbles,high optical solution,color protecting,solvent free,high refractive index
Micro Tech Lab advisory service: microscopy, digital cameras, high quality photo
Service: improving image quality by giving your microscope a professional check-up
Camera ranking for microscopy use
Camera recommendation for microscopy application
DSLR camera or special-purpose microscope cameras?
Image sensor: dynamic range and it's influence on image quality
Microsocope recommendation
The Zeiss Stemi 508 stereo microscope: microscope adapters for digital cameras (DLSR and system cameras)
The Olympus IX2 series: enhanced versatility for use in a wide range of application
Our LM digital adapters open the Zeiss SV8 stereo microscope to a new, digital world
Nikon’s SMZ 645 and 660 stereo microscopes in microphotography
With the help of LM Digital adapter the inverse Nikon Eclipse MA100 and MA200 microscope become fit for photomicrography
Capture exceptional images with the Leica DM4 B/DM6 B and our LM digital adapters
LM photo microscope with Nikon C-mount camera DS-Fi2 and control panel DS-L3 for measurement tasks, long-term studies and lengthy observations
Install modern camera systems (DSLR, system- or c-mount cameras) with our LM digital adapter on the Olympus SZX9 – a stereo microscope for industrial applications
Capture One Pro software: Tethering in microscopy with Live View for a large variety of cameras
Preview: The Nikon D850 – the new number 1 in our camera ranking!
Sony Alpha 9 – a camera that has everything you need!
Sony Alpha 7S II – a video specialist with ultra-high light sensitivity
Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 – an interesting solution for long-term video recording at the microscope
Professional camera with full-frame sensor Leica M10 on the microscope
The new Canon DSLR EOS 1300D – a “microscope camera” with an unbeatable price/performance ratio

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Microphotography with Pentax K-5

We have already read a great deal about Pentax DSLRs, but we have never tested them for microscope applications. For this reason we thought that it was about time we started a series of tests using Pentax cameras. The first Pentax we tested was the K-5, which has been on the market for quite a while, and we will look at the K-5 II next. 

Pentax K-5 frontview       Pentax K-5 backview

The Pentax K-5 has a very aesthetic look and style. It is not particularly bulky but relatively heavy (750 grams for the camera body alone), and is also very well built. Its CMOS sensor has 16 megapixels. The display is sufficiently large (3“) and features a special scratch-proof coating. Unfortunately, however, it is not mobile

For our test series we used a Micros Lotus MCX51 microscope. To mount the camera to the phototube, the LM DSLRPT adapter and a TUSTB were also needed. With the Micros Lotus MCX51 we chose not to connect the camera to the eyepiece tube. With other microscopes it is, of course, also possible to attach the Pentax K-5 to the eyepiece tube (30 mm diameter) (see right-hand image). In that case, the LM DSLRPT and also a TUST30S will be needed. 

                             

The Pentax K-5 also supports non-CPU lenses, and therefore, when using the LM microscope adapter, all auto functions – especially auto exposure – are available. The camera also has a Live View mode (Pentax calls it real-time view), which, unfortunately, can only be set for a brief five minutes. This is very little for our purposes. The Live View mode needs to be constantly switched on again. A positive aspect is, however, that the magnification function can also be used in Live View

We also very much liked the fact that the Live View feature works when transmitted to an external monitor via HDMI.

The camera’s quiet shutter should also be particularly emphasised. There is really no other camera that shoots with as little noise as the Pentax K-5. Nevertheless, in our specialised applications it is important to try to reduce every vibration, no matter how small. Another possibility to minimise vibration to the greatest extent possible is to use the mirror lock-up. The Pentax offers two types of mirror lock-up shooting: M.UP – mirror lock-up shooting with the shutter release button 

and M.UP + small camera symbol below: mirror lock-up shooting with the remote control. The shutter will be released immediately after the shutter release button on the remote control unit is pressed.  

Of course, it is also possible to shoot videos in full HD format with the Pentax K-5. The camera outputs up to 25 frames per second. Strangely enough, Pentax uses Motion JPEG as its video format, which is already somewhat dated. According to the manual, 25 minutes of recording are possible, but in practice it has been shown that the maximum file size of 4 GB will be reached well before this. It is to be hoped that with the successor model, a more up-to-date video format will be used, so that longer recordings are possible. 

ISO sensitivity ranges from 100 to 25,600 in auto mode, and in manual mode, it is even possible to select a range from ISO 80 to 51,200

The operation of the Pentax K-5 is definitely geared toward more advanced users. Individual settings can be saved manually. 

The image quality is very good, and the signal-to-noise ratio is also excellent. We are also very satisfied with the colour rendition. The colour depth is 42 bits

For producing professional photo documentation with a microscope, a remote control software program is very useful. Unfortunately, a program of that kind is not (yet?) available from Pentax. For this reason, we would put this right at the top of our wish list for Pentax! 

Conclusion:

All in all, the Pentax K-5 is a very good camera that really impresses with its image quality and the variety of available settings. When it comes to microphotography, however, we could really do with a remote control software program, and the Live View time limit should be raised to at least 30 minutes. Due to the video format used, the video recording time is very short. This is rather inconvenient, as it is necessary to either switch memory cards or download the recorded videos frequently. 

06.12.2012



Related Links

 

High-end intermediate optics for connecting microscopes to:
  • digital SLR cameras
  • digital mirrorless system cameras with an interchangeable lens mount
  • c-mount-, USB- and firewire cameras
  • digital compact cameras and camcorders
[Further information amd prices]
 
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Special mounting media  for microscopy

Tips and tricks to connect your digital camera and to process digital images
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 Demo Pictures

 
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