Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

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Hobbyst46
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Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#1 Post by Hobbyst46 » Thu Jul 25, 2019 3:45 pm

Hello all,
Some time ago I compared the performance of an unbranded ("generic") inexpensive 4X0.1 Plan achromat objective with other 4X objectives. on a Zeiss Standard stand, under afocal and focal setups. For anyone who might be interested,
it was here:
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=7734&p=68109&hilit=unbranded#p68109
Fortuitiously, I have had the chance of testing the same objective on a trinocular BH2 stand. Illumination - halogen (plus blue filter), condenser - phase contrast at BF position, Kohler adjusted. The eyepiece USB camera, along with its 0.5X lens, was inserted in the photo tube (no additional optics there), and was manually adjusted to be nearly parfocal with the bino eyepieces. I compared the unbranded 4X to an Olympus DPlan 4X0.1 objective (both require a coverslip, but I placed the exposed stage micrometer without cover). Please see images below.
On this setup, and at least, without expanded views of the images, I feel that the unbranded objective about equals the Olympus objective. Both are limited by some CA from the camera itself, probably, but the results are decent. I think that these results are In agreement with PeteM's conclusions from evaluation, within the post in the link.

Side note: a personal super subjective opinion, the halogen + blue filter yields a more plain bright white background than the LED replacement (this is not meant to be a can of fuel added to the fire). Or is it the 25 years-younger BH2 vs Zeiss Standard...
Attachments
Olympus Dplan  4x0.1 eyepiece camera.jpg
Olympus Dplan 4x0.1 eyepiece camera.jpg (154.02 KiB) Viewed 1536 times
Unbranded  4X0.1 eyepiece camera.jpg
Unbranded 4X0.1 eyepiece camera.jpg (123.12 KiB) Viewed 1549 times
Last edited by Hobbyst46 on Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PeteM
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#2 Post by PeteM » Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:29 pm

Thanks for the follow up review.

Tiny point, pretty sure the label on the second picture is mean to be "DPlan."

Hobbyst46
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#3 Post by Hobbyst46 » Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:50 pm

PeteM wrote:Thanks for the follow up review.

Tiny point, pretty sure the label on the second picture is mean to be "DPlan."
Thanks for the correction. I edited the post accordingly but the image order is now reversed.
SPlan for sure is better...
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#4 Post by Scarodactyl » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:18 pm

The olympus objective requires compensating optics so it isn't surprising it is struggling a bit. Still, good results from an inexpensive objective are always nice. How is the view through the eyepieces in comparison?

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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#5 Post by Hobbyst46 » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:42 pm

Scarodactyl wrote:The olympus objective requires compensating optics so it isn't surprising it is struggling a bit. Still, good results from an inexpensive objective are always nice. How is the view through the eyepieces in comparison?
The field of view through the eyepieces (Olympus WHK 10X20) is larger than that of the camera by a factor of roughly 2, and CA near the margins is visible even through the eyepieces. Yet I could not differentiate between the two objectives from the eye view alone.
My conclusion from the combined results on the Zeiss and Olympus sets is that the unbranded objective works fairly decently in the focal setting with the eyepiece camera. Worse performance when combined with a Zeiss "photo" eyepiece in afocal setup. Since Olympus 160mm optics are also corrected, chances are poor performance of the unbranded 4X in afocal setup on the Olympus as well.
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#6 Post by mrsonchus » Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:29 pm

An interesting thread! I ordered some 2-weeks ago a 60x infinity unbranded achromatic 0.85 unbranded 'for Olympus' Chinese objective as a stop-gap for my Olympus BX40. Until I found a genuine and affordable Olympus one this was to do. It hasn't arrived yet but is due soon, it's actually in the U.K. now and on it's final leg to me....
Meanwhile I found a nice UPlanApo Olympus 60x 0.90 with coverslip correction collar and bought it. It's very nice indeed.

Given the above it'll be interesting to see how these two compare - if the Chinese one's anywhere close to the very expensive Olympus I'll probably have several screaming-fits and faint! :shock:

I'll hang-on to the Chinese on as long as it's not truly awful as you never know when a second 'scope may force it's way into the lab!

I'll post a similar thread to this one for comparisons when the unbranded 60x arrives.

The unbranded 60x due soon,
ws_Capture.jpg
ws_Capture.jpg (27.58 KiB) Viewed 1516 times
The very expensive Olympus 60x UPlanApo,
60x dry objective 2.jpg
60x dry objective 2.jpg (33.24 KiB) Viewed 1516 times
Thanks for this interesting and informative thread.
John B

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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#7 Post by Crater Eddie » Thu Jul 25, 2019 8:31 pm

The bargain 4x looks very usable in the BH2.
I still need a 60x for my BH2, have resisted these bargain priced objectives since my disappointment with an Amscope 20x a couple of years ago. I'll be watching both Hobbyst46's and John's continuing adventures closely.
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#8 Post by Hobbyst46 » Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:05 pm

mrsonchus wrote:...
John B., irrespective of the unbranded 4X performance, I hope you enjoy the unbranded 60X ! If I ever think of upgrading to infinity corrected Olympus of the BX or CX series, the prices of genuine Olympus objectives are frightening.
Crater Eddie wrote:...
I cannot avoid posting my very few quick images obtained with the Olympus 60X0.9 Planapo, 160mm (with correction collar, 0.11-0.23) dry objective. I already returned that BH2 microscope to its owner, so cannot repeat them. The cells are some stained mouse kidney tissue from a school of medicine. Their image with the Olympus 10X0.25 is shown for reference. The diatom is my strew slide, in Pleurax. All taken with a cheap USB eyepiece camera and MiCAM software.

I would appreciate your opinions.
Attachments
Cells 10 X 0.25 DPlan, brightfield.jpg
Cells 10 X 0.25 DPlan, brightfield.jpg (452.18 KiB) Viewed 1501 times
Cells 60 X 0.90, Planapo, brightfield.jpg
Cells 60 X 0.90, Planapo, brightfield.jpg (365.42 KiB) Viewed 1501 times
Diatom 60 X 0.90 brightfield.jpg
Diatom 60 X 0.90 brightfield.jpg (297.74 KiB) Viewed 1501 times
Last edited by Hobbyst46 on Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#9 Post by PeteM » Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:30 pm

John, My limited experience with dry 60x objectives (Nikon, Olympus, and generic plan achromats) is that even the best of them are very sensitive to specimen and cover slip thickness.

And, because of the shallow depth of field, very rarely will a specimen be thin enough to look sharp at any single focus point. Reducing the numerical aperture by closing down the condenser can give a decent image, but at the loss of resolution.

I think you'll find the quality of your soon-to-arrive dry 60x Olympus PlanApo objective, with the correction collar properly set, should yield better stacked images than one might think judging from a single focus point. An Olympus PlanApo oil, likely even better, but with the fuss of oil and the greater possibility of oil intrusion into pricey objectives.

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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#10 Post by mrsonchus » Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:21 pm

PeteM wrote:John, My limited experience with dry 60x objectives (Nikon, Olympus, and generic plan achromats) is that even the best of them are very sensitive to specimen and cover slip thickness.

And, because of the shallow depth of field, very rarely will a specimen be thin enough to look sharp at any single focus point. Reducing the numerical aperture by closing down the condenser can give a decent image, but at the loss of resolution.

I think you'll find the quality of your soon-to-arrive dry 60x Olympus PlanApo objective, with the correction collar properly set, should yield better stacked images than one might think judging from a single focus point. An Olympus PlanApo oil, likely even better, but with the fuss of oil and the greater possibility of oil intrusion into pricey objectives.
Hi Pete - I already have the UPlanApo 60x with collar (I await the arrival of the unbranded Chinese achromat) and you're dead-right - it's images do stack very nicely. My subjects are slides of plant tissue and don't actually offer this objective a real opportunity to achieve it's maximum potential I think. I do find the correction-collar to be very useful however.
My sections range from about 4µ to a max of say 12µ - not of course across one section!

I eventually found some high quality coverslips which are of between 0.17 and 0.16mm nominally. Even with the collar the 60x is very sensitive to slide parameters I find, although I have only had it for about a week....

Very recently I examined the outer-shell (exine) of some fresh Lily-pollen mounted in immersion-oil with 0.16mm coverslip and for the first time found a noticeable difference in correction-collar setting resolution. It actually optimised at a setting of 0.14mm rather counterintuitively, although to have full understanding of this result I would need to know the implications of using this mounting method and material I think.

I also got lucky and found a nice UIS2 20x to match the set, just after I'd nuked my bank-account with the 60x purchase - whisps of steam are still rising gently from my debit card.........

The more I practice with this 60x the more I like it and begin to master it's use. One of the main uses I put it to in addition to casual chromosome observation is the identification of primary/secondary cell-wall pores and pits, which are essential features for a correct identification of the several tissue/cell types so similar in lower powers and numerical apertures, comprising for example xylem and phloem systems.
I also find that I'm able to see cellular inclusions and plastids just well enough to aid observation of their nature and even identification.

The advantages of the 60x are very subtle and obviously need an experienced eye, which I'm lucky enough to have acquired as I have such familiarity with my literally hundreds of plant slides. A great advantage also is the availability to me of differently-stained and/or mounted identical, even serial, plant-tissue sections. This enables me to consider the plant-tissue sections as virtually identical and therefore to a large extent discount them as a source of variation in certain comparisons and results. A very handy situation indeed!

This is my preferred approach to image and objective assessment - quite a high qualitative emphasis of a very varied source of specimen rather than a perhaps more quantitative approach possible with for example the consistency of cleaned Diatom specimen slides.

Is the 60x UPlanApo 'worth the cost' in my Botanical application - not really, but I'm extremely pleased with it as it's a pleasure to use!

Interesting to see how the unbranded 60x performs!
John B

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Re: Unbranded NEW 4X Planachromate objective on Olympus BH2 microscope

#11 Post by mrsonchus » Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:37 pm

Hi hobby' - yes the objective prices are truly horrific! What I have learned though is that the performance of the std UIS1 achromats is very nearly as good, very, very nearly, as the UIS2 PlanAchromats that I now have in 4x, 10x, 20x, 40x and 100x....

At least this was the case I found with the x20 and x40 that my BX40 came with. It also had, and I have of course kept, achromatic phase 10x and 40x UIS1 objectives - which are also very good indeed and allow me to retain the ability (although 'off the nosepiece') to use phase at 10x or 40x. I find the phase of the BX40 to be far superior to that of my old Leitz Orthoplan, to the extent that I now use phase to examine certain cell-wall perforation/pit-fields when they don't image too well in normal BF..

I was very lucky to find a reasonably-priced set of 4x, 10x, 40x and 100x UIS2 PlanAchros at the time I bought the BX40 (from a different seller). Then I succumbed and bought the 60x UPlanApo.. then I'm afraid a pristine 20x UIS2 PlanAchro appeared for sale and I (gulps of shame..... :oops: ) well, bought it!
So now I have a beautifully-stepped set of objectives on the nosepiece, plus two very nice achromat phase and a 100x PlanAchro oil-immersion objectives. I am now going into financial hibernation for a few months to heal my finances...

But, if you move into Olympus infinite objectives - don't underestimate the quality of the 'std' achromats - they really are superb I have found....
John B

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