Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

Do you have any microscopy questions, which you are afraid to ask? This is your place.
Post Reply
Message
Author
mala23
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:36 am

Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#1 Post by mala23 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:54 am

Hi there

To get started with microscopy as an amateur mycologist, I am looking for a decent build quality, well-featured yet affordable compound microscope. So far this is what I have been looking into:

T720 40X-1000X Plan Infinity Kohler Laboratory Trinocular Compound Microscope
Price: €731.46
Plan infinity optical system offers crisp clear sharp images
40X-1000X with four extreme widefield magnification settings
Backward nosepiece configuration allocates spacious space for comfortable operation and observation
Wide band voltage (90-240V) Kohler LED illumination with iris condenser
Trinocular port for adding photo/video capability

Link: https://www.amscope.com/40x-1000x-plan- ... scope.html

Swift SW380T 40X-2500X Magnification
Price: €289.99
A super sleek,multi-purpose compound microscope for viewing tiny details of specimen slides; built for clinicians, high school and university science students, and enthusiastic hobbyists alike
Professional Siedentopf head is fully rotatable for shared use and equipped with interchangeable wide-field 10X and 25X glass eyepieces fixed at an ergonomic 30 degree tilt to reduce neck strain, easily adjustable for different interpupillary distances without losing focus
4 DIN Achromatic objectives mounted in a revolving turret offer 6 magnification levels: 40X, 100X, 250X, 400X, 1000X, and 2500X
Ultra-precise focusing system to make coarse and extremely fine adjustments
Trinocular head accepts an additional eyepiece and microscope camera attachments (not included) in order to view, livestream, record, and capture magnified specimen images

Link: https://www.amazon.de/dp/B07VVJ1WY1/ref ... s9dHJ1ZQ==

To be honest, after one late night of research I simply fail to see any major differences in features apart from the T720 rocking Infinity PLAN instead of DIN glass and the mentioned köhler lighting which there's no mention of for the SW380T...

Do optics and lighting justify the several hundred in price difference? Will I need köhler lighting for looking at spores, mycelium and fruitbodies of mushrooms, taking pictures and ideally timelapse video using my DSLR camera? The PLAN standard does look tasty to me compared o DIN, especially for the video and photo applications I plan for.

Please talk me out of spending 440 Euros for no additional value at all. Thank you!
Last edited by mala23 on Sat Mar 28, 2020 11:00 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
mrsonchus
Posts: 3683
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 9:42 pm
Location: Cumbria, UK

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#2 Post by mrsonchus » Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:48 am

Hi, this forum is packed with very knowledgeable folk re equipment.
Yours is an often-asked question of course, and a look through past posts - many very recent or active, will get you off to an interesting and useful start. My one piece of advice is to buy nothing until you've spent a little time with the real experts here, who will be able to give you some superb advice on this topic - just let the thread develop, don't make a purchase yet!

Good luck, help is on it's way I'm certain!
John B

mala23
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:36 am

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#3 Post by mala23 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:53 am

Thank you, John. I only found the forum today morning. I watched many videos on Youtube, including the MicrobeHunter channel. They are helpful and helped me freshen up my rusty secondary school microscopy knowledge...

I will gladly follow your advice and suppress my shopping urges until I have done more research and hopefully gotten more inputs here. Thanks again, stay healthy!

Roldorf
Posts: 433
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:58 pm
Location: Northern Germany

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#4 Post by Roldorf » Sat Mar 28, 2020 1:21 pm

We have the Bresser equivalent of the T720 which I have found to be very good. The objectives make a difference in that the full field of view is in focus however they are a lot more expensive. We also have an interest in Pilz (Mushrooms, which is why I chose this particular microscope). If you are based in Germany Bresser have an open day once a month, where you can try out all the microscopes, which at the moment is probably not active due to the virus situation. This is what we did and bought it then and there to bring it home with us (and we got a special price). Köhler illumination is very important for depth of field and contrast especially with spores.
If you choose a lower cost scope make sure it has Köhler illumination.
https://www.bresser.de/Mikroskopie/Mikr ... op-30.html


Edit: In fact looking at them both I would say that they are made by the same Chinese company.
2nd Edit: Put the Amscope and the Bresser on the same page and the only difference is where they put the company name, Oh and the colour of the plastic plate on the stand.
Last edited by Roldorf on Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Location: Northern Germany

Canon 4000d
Image

PeteM
Posts: 978
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:22 am
Location: N. California

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#5 Post by PeteM » Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:21 pm

The frames, optics, and head are pretty clearly different. Given there are scores of optical companies in China and at least half a dozen major producers, hard to know if the scopes came out of the same factory IMO.

I've had a couple used objectives that look like those on the Swift scope. The 40x wasn't that good or plan.

Mala23 - where are you located? This makes a difference in best sources. If in Germany, someone like member MicroBob (a very knowledgeable member here) might have some ideas.

And, do you feel comfortable buying a used microscope that might require a careful look when you first get it (to be sure nothing is missing or broken) and then cleaning or perhaps lubrication? This could be a much better value for your money; especially if you want a "system" microscope that can be upgraded in the future.

The AmScope 700 series is pretty good for what it is. Beyond the optics already mentioned, not sure about the Swift.

mala23
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:36 am

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#6 Post by mala23 » Sun Mar 29, 2020 8:18 am

Roldorf wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 1:21 pm
If you are based in Germany Bresser have an open day once a month, where you can try out all the microscopes, which at the moment is probably not active due to the virus situation.

Köhler illumination is very important for depth of field and contrast especially with spores.
If you choose a lower cost scope make sure it has Köhler illumination.
Thank you for these helpful infos, Roldorf. Since spores is what I will be mostly looking at, this point helps me a lot.

mala23
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:36 am

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#7 Post by mala23 » Sun Mar 29, 2020 9:06 am

PeteM wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:21 pm
Mala23 - where are you located? This makes a difference in best sources. If in Germany, someone like member MicroBob (a very knowledgeable member here) might have some ideas.
I am located in Switzerland, would not be that big of a hassle to ride my car to Germany to check out a used microscope before buying. Once this current health crisis is over, of course.
PeteM wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:21 pm
And, do you feel comfortable buying a used microscope that might require a careful look when you first get it (to be sure nothing is missing or broken) and then cleaning or perhaps lubrication? This could be a much better value for your money; especially if you want a "system" microscope that can be upgraded in the future.
The more knowledge I gather in my research, the more confident I get in regards to this option. I am in general quite into hacking things, taking electronics apart and so on. I would feel comfortable with maintaining or even refurbishing a device if I can score a very nice price.
PeteM wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:21 pm
The AmScope 700 series is pretty good for what it is. Beyond the optics already mentioned, not sure about the Swift.
I too have this impression so far. One question I am currently considering is if it would be better to step a notch down on the budget for the compound microscope, so I can afford a second, stereo microscope in the not too far future, in order to cover a wider range. I imagine it would come in handy in observing contaminations on agar tissue cultures plus it would serve as a very much needed tool in my electronics practice.

I'd love to make some hands-on experience on a compound and a stereo microscope to help my decision. There are so many questions that seem hard to answer to me. Is it possible and sensible to examine petri dish with a compound microscope? Would I be willing to sacrifice my tissue cultures every time I want to observe them on slides? Will I need oil immersion to observe fungal spores? If I have a nice trinocular compound microscope for videography, should the second, stereo device also be trinocular so I can film on that one, too? Where can I save, where should I not?

User avatar
75RR
Posts: 6806
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2014 2:34 am
Location: Estepona, Spain

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#8 Post by 75RR » Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:09 pm

mala23 wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 9:06 am

PeteM wrote:
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:21 pm
And, do you feel comfortable buying a used microscope that might require a careful look when you first get it (to be sure nothing is missing or broken) and then cleaning or perhaps lubrication? This could be a much better value for your money; especially if you want a "system" microscope that can be upgraded in the future.
The more knowledge I gather in my research, the more confident I get in regards to this option. I am in general quite into hacking things, taking electronics apart and so on. I would feel comfortable with maintaining or even refurbishing a device if I can score a very nice price.
In that case perhaps you should have a look at this Leitz Laborlux 12

https://www.ebay.de/itm/Leitz-Mikroskop ... SwjjdeTAfN

Hopefully some forum members can give an opinion on it
Zeiss Standard WL (somewhat fashion challenged) & Wild M8
Olympus E-P2 (Micro Four Thirds Camera)

mala23
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:36 am

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#9 Post by mala23 » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:53 pm

75RR wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:09 pm
In that case perhaps you should have a look at this Leitz Laborlux 12

https://www.ebay.de/itm/Leitz-Mikroskop ... SwjjdeTAfN
Looks very interesting, thanks for sharing. Any opinions on this? In the meantime, I am trying to find out if I can get a suitable Lens-Adapter for my Nikon D800...

MicroBob
Posts: 1987
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2016 9:11 am
Location: Northern Germany

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#10 Post by MicroBob » Sun Mar 29, 2020 7:20 pm

Micro photography is an additional field of learning and work. I would suggest that you read up on the options of choosing and adapting cameras before you spend money. For high quality photography it is very important to have a virbation free shutter release from live view, EFSC, electronic first shutter curtain. Very few Nikon have this but yours might actually be among them.

Bob

PeteM
Posts: 978
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:22 am
Location: N. California

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#11 Post by PeteM » Sun Mar 29, 2020 8:41 pm

Mala23, a couple responses.

1) Spending a bit less to have both a stereo and compound microscope sounds like a good idea to me - I think you'd enjoy having both.

2) You sound like just the person who'd do well with a used microscope. There's a learning curve. But the first bonus is you'll get better scopes for less money. Second bonus is you'll have much greater knowledge (that learning curve) to get the most out of your scope.

3) If you like, when you have enough posts to send a personal message here, I can send you a guide to microscope brands and models. This was prepared to help local parents and mentors find good values in microscopes and covers a wide variety and some details of what to avoid and what to look for. Let me know an email address and I can send a PDF. The models widely available to you in Switzerland will be a bit different than here in California, but there is plenty of info on German, Austrian, Japanese, Chinese, and even Swiss models.

PeteM
Posts: 978
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:22 am
Location: N. California

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#12 Post by PeteM » Sun Mar 29, 2020 8:44 pm

To add, on the Leitz Laborlux. This can be a good microscope but is priced about 2x too high in my opinion. You will also likely want one better equipped; trinocular head etc.

Malpi
Posts: 47
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2019 4:41 pm
Location: England

Re: Amscope T720 vs. Swift SW380T

#13 Post by Malpi » Sun Mar 29, 2020 8:49 pm

mala23 wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:53 pm
75RR wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:09 pm
for my Nikon D800...
MicroBob wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 7:20 pm
very important to have a virbation free shutter release from live view, EFSC, electronic first shutter curtain. Very few Nikon have this but yours might actually be among them.
I could be wrong but I think EFSC was not introduced until the 810 ?
Needs checking on because I have been mostly into Canon.

Post Reply