American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

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paleome
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American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#1 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 7:32 pm

Hello!

I have the above-mentioned scope. It is wonderful, but I need a little higher magnification. Would a stereostar zoom model, such as the 570, do the trick? I have the manuals for these scopes, but with my relative lack of knowledge about some of the jargon, I have trouble interpreting descriptions. Can anyone tell me what maximum magnification I am currently getting with the 571? Based on that, I can tell you what I need.

Thank you for your assistance.

Debra

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#2 Post by Scarodactyl » Sun Jul 12, 2020 8:17 pm

The 571 is fixed at '1x' mag, so you're getting 10x through the eyepieces. The zoom models all go a lot higher than that, with the 569 topping out at 3x, the 470 at 4.2x and the rare 480 at 6x. They all produce a very good image.

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#3 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:01 pm

OK, so now I see how you are calculating the magnification. 1x body times 10x eyepieces = 10x magnification, right? Is it recommended
to try to get and use higher magnification eyepieces with this model to achieve higher magnification, or would that mess up the optics? What is the benefit of using a stereostar zoom over the fixed model? As you can probably gather, I'm new to microscopy.

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#4 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:08 pm

Scarodactyl wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 8:17 pm
The 571 is fixed at '1x' mag, so you're getting 10x through the eyepieces. The zoom models all go a lot higher than that, with the 569 topping out at 3x, the 470 at 4.2x and the rare 480 at 6x. They all produce a very good image.
OK, so now I see how you are calculating the magnification. 1X body times 10X eyepieces = 10 magnification, right? Would it be recommended for me to get and use higher magnification eyepieces with my 571 to increase the magnification, or would that mess up the optics?

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#5 Post by Hobbyst46 » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:11 pm

paleome wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:01 pm
OK, so now I see how you are calculating the magnification. 1x body times 10x eyepieces = 10x magnification, right? Is it recommended
to try to get and use higher magnification eyepieces with this model to achieve higher magnification, or would that mess up the optics? What is the benefit of using a stereostar zoom over the fixed model? As you can probably gather, I'm new to microscopy.
It rather depends on what one wants to see. My experience: Zoom magnification is not significantly better or more convenient than fixed magnifications. And very high magnifications (say, >50) mean a too shallow work space under the objective. I think that a stereo with 10X (or better yet, 7X), 20X, 30X/40X is just fine. Even just two mags - 10X and 30X - would cover most situations. Regardless of zoom or fixed mags. My short experience with an AO 569 was excellent.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#6 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:29 pm

Thanks again. I have a basic compound microscope which starts at 40x, but the field of view is so small, and when I move my fossil to the right, the image I see moves to the left. I need to look at several hundred specimens at about 30x - 40x, and I am not willing to use my compound microscope with its inherent problems. I love the way I see things under my stereoscope, but I realize stereoscopes don't magnify very highly. Do you have any suggestions for how I can get what I need?

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#7 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:33 pm

Does the 569 go up to 30x or 40x? If so, that's what I need for my microfossils.

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#8 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:38 pm

I'm able to answer some of my own questions now. So what does the zoom do, as opposed to the fixed body, in layman's terms?

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#9 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:53 pm

So that means I can put in higher magnification eyepieces, like 20x or 30x, or 40X, to my 571, without messing up the optics? I am pretty unaware of how far one can go to optimize a stereoscope. And what does the zoom feature exactly do, in layman's terms?

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#10 Post by Scarodactyl » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:58 pm

I have to disagree with Hobbyst46 re: mags over 50x on a stereo. It depends on what you're looking at, but for gemological work 40x mag is about where you start to see really interesting stuff, anything that tops out around there feels pretty anemic.

Zooming means that you can continuously change magnification between the minimum and maximum. That's as opposed to a totally fixed mag (like your 571 body) or a scope with multiple discrete magnification steps (like an AO cycloptic or Wild M3c) which can switch between a few specific magnifications. Either style is good, but continuous zooming is vastly preferred by the market so any newer mid to high end stereo system will have a continuous zoom. In theory zooming is significantly harder to get right, since you're asking your lenses to be great under a wide range of conditions, but in practice it's not that big a deal.

You can use higher mag eyepieces or an auxiliary objective. Higher mag eyepieces stretch the image you already have (like zooming in on a .jpg)--there's no more information offered, but it makes it easier for your eyes to see what's already there. An auxiliary lens does change resolution, but it also changes working distance. So you can double resolution with a 2x auxiliary lens, but this reduces working distance significantly (which may or may not matter for what you're doing). More practically speaking AO auxiliary lenses are kind of rare and in decent demand nowadays.

The 569 tops out at 30x with 10x eyepieces. You could get away with 15x eyepieces on it for extra mag, maybe even 20x since what you're doing is not necessarily high resolution work. If I were getting an AO stereo I'd get a 470 over a 469, since you're getting a wider zoom range and higher resolution optics for not that much more money. There are tons of great options for used stereos out there, but AO did use an unusual 4 inch diameter mount which other scopes will not natively fit, so it would be easier to go this route (plus AOs were built really well, much better than an equivalent scope made today).

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#11 Post by PeteM » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:01 pm

You can also by accessory lenses for the objective. Off the top of my head, I think AO made 1.5x and 2x screw-on objectives. If you think a single fixed magnification of 15x or 20x would be just right for your fossils, that might be preferable to the 15x or 20x eyepieces. You could, of course, combine both the supplementary lenses for objectives and various pairs of eyepieces.

At some point you may just want to find a zoom or mag-changer type scope.

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#12 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:13 pm

Scarodactyl wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:58 pm
I have to disagree with Hobbyst46 re: mags over 50x on a stereo. It depends on what you're looking at, but for gemological work 40x mag is about where you start to see really interesting stuff, anything that tops out around there feels pretty anemic.
I like 40x.
Zooming means that you can continuously change magnification between the minimum and maximum. That's as opposed to a totally fixed mag (like your 571 body) or a scope with multiple discrete magnification steps (like an AO cycloptic or Wild M3c) which can switch between a few specific magnifications. Either style is good, but continuous zooming is vastly preferred by the market so any newer mid to high end stereo system will have a continuous zoom. In theory zooming is significantly harder to get right, since you're asking your lenses to be great under a wide range of conditions, but in practice it's not that big a deal.

You can use higher mag eyepieces or an auxiliary objective. Higher mag eyepieces stretch the image you already have (like zooming in on a .jpg)--there's no more information offered, but it makes it easier for your eyes to see what's already there. An auxiliary lens does change resolution, but it also changes working distance. So you can double resolution with a 2x auxiliary lens, but this reduces working distance significantly (which may or may not matter for what you're doing). More practically speaking AO auxiliary lenses are kind of rare and in decent demand nowadays.
Scarodactyl wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:58 pm
I have to disagree with Hobbyst46 re: mags over 50x on a stereo. It depends on what you're looking at, but for gemological work 40x mag is about where you start to see really interesting stuff, anything that tops out around there feels pretty anemic.

Zooming means that you can continuously change magnification between the minimum and maximum. That's as opposed to a totally fixed mag (like your 571 body) or a scope with multiple discrete magnification steps (like an AO cycloptic or Wild M3c) which can switch between a few specific magnifications. Either style is good, but continuous zooming is vastly preferred by the market so any newer mid to high end stereo system will have a continuous zoom. In theory zooming is significantly harder to get right, since you're asking your lenses to be great under a wide range of conditions, but in practice it's not that big a deal.

You can use higher mag eyepieces or an auxiliary objective. Higher mag eyepieces stretch the image you already have (like zooming in on a .jpg)--there's no more information offered, but it makes it easier for your eyes to see what's already there. An auxiliary lens does change resolution, but it also changes working distance. So you can double resolution with a 2x auxiliary lens, but this reduces working distance significantly (which may or may not matter for what you're doing). More practically speaking AO auxiliary lenses are kind of rare and in decent demand nowadays.

The 569 tops out at 30x with 10x eyepieces. You could get away with 15x eyepieces on it for extra mag, maybe even 20x since what you're doing is not necessarily high resolution work. If I were getting an AO stereo I'd get a 470 over a 469, since you're getting a wider zoom range and higher resolution optics for not that much more money. There are tons of great options for used stereos out there, but AO did use an unusual 4 inch diameter mount which other scopes will not natively fit, so it would be easier to go this route (plus AOs were built really well, much better than an equivalent scope made today).
eyepieces. You could get away with 15x eyepieces on it for extra mag, maybe even 20x since what you're doing is not necessarily high resolution work. If I were getting an AO stereo I'd get a 470 over a 469, since you're getting a wider zoom range and higher resolution optics for not that much more money. There are tons of great options for used stereos out there, but AO did use an unusual 4 inch diameter mount which other scopes will not natively fit, so it would be easier to go this route (plus AOs were built really well, much better than an equivalent scope made today).
Hobbyst46 wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:11 pm
paleome wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:01 pm
OK, so now I see how you are calculating the magnification. 1x body times 10x eyepieces = 10x magnification, right? Is it recommended
to try to get and use higher magnification eyepieces with this model to achieve higher magnification, or would that mess up the optics? What is the benefit of using a stereostar zoom over the fixed model? As you can probably gather, I'm new to microscopy.
It rather depends on what one wants to see. My experience: Zoom magnification is not significantly better or more convenient than fixed magnifications. And very high magnifications (say, >50) mean a too shallow work space under the objective. I think that a stereo with 10X (or better yet, 7X), 20X, 30X/40X is just fine. Even just two mags - 10X and 30X - would cover most situations. Regardless of zoom or fixed mags. My short experience with an AO 569 was excellent.
Some does that mean that I can plug in 30X or 40x eyepieces to my 571, without messing up the optics? What, exactly, does the zoom feature do, in layman's terms?

I really like 40x, and next, I am trying to find a way to take photographs through the stereoscope I eventually use. I already got alot of information on the photography side of things from this forum, so I am trying to make more decisions.

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#13 Post by paleome » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:23 pm

Thank you very much for your input. You have been extremely helpful in helping me understand how things can work! Deb

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#14 Post by hans » Mon Jul 13, 2020 12:00 am

Scarodactyl wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:58 pm
...scope with multiple discrete magnification steps (like an AO cycloptic or Wild M3c)...
In designs with discrete steps does the field sweep out of view to black, then back into view, like it does when changing objectives on a compound microscope? Or is it implemented a less visually disruptive manner where it is possible to maintain your eyes fixated on whatever you are looking at while changing magnification, as you can with a zoom design?

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#15 Post by Scarodactyl » Mon Jul 13, 2020 12:22 am

It depends. In vertical turret systems with only two settings (classic 10x/30x or similar combos) the image rotates out of frame in each eye in a weird way that can be unpleasant if you try to focus on it (unlikely to be an issue in regular use). I like drums better, since the image flips in and out fast enough that you don't have that issue, but I haven't used a vertical turret system much. I suspect a high end one like the Wild M5 would be better than the low end ones

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#16 Post by Hobbyst46 » Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:21 am

Scarodactyl wrote:
Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:58 pm
I have to disagree with Hobbyst46 re: mags over 50x on a stereo. It depends on what you're looking at, but for gemological work 40x mag is about where you start to see really interesting stuff, anything that tops out around there feels pretty anemic.
My apology, did not realize that Paleome's chief interest is minerals.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#17 Post by paleome » Tue Jul 21, 2020 10:41 pm

I want to thank everyone who followed, and responded to, me concerning this original post. As a result of explaining things to me, and educating me on how to interpret microscope specifications, I have finally found the stereoscope of my dreams for Paleontology work. And, the price was very reasonable. I was able to get an AO star stereozoom power body model 570 online. I am now able to see things I couldn't see clearly before, and it plugs nicely into the pot holder/stand where my 571 used to be! Now, on to a camera for it...

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Re: American Optical stereostar 571 fixed body stereoscope

#18 Post by Hobbyst46 » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:53 am

paleome wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 10:41 pm
I want to thank everyone who followed, and responded to, me concerning this original post. As a result of explaining things to me, and educating me on how to interpret microscope specifications, I have finally found the stereoscope of my dreams for Paleontology work. And, the price was very reasonable. I was able to get an AO star stereozoom power body model 570 online. I am now able to see things I couldn't see clearly before, and it plugs nicely into the pot holder/stand where my 571 used to be! Now, on to a camera for it...
Congratulations, enjoy. An excellent choice.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

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