DSLR or Integrated?

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Trigon
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Joined: Sun Dec 08, 2019 3:37 am

DSLR or Integrated?

#1 Post by Trigon » Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:38 pm

So I'm hoping to set up a scope for general gemological use as its primary function. Initially I had my heart set on a head with a trinocular port so I could adapt the dslr of my choosing but after reading around a little it appears there is a lot to consider in terms of user needs, not a ton of aftermarket support and a lot to learn to get the desired result.
As a newb is the best course of action to just sacrifice freedom of customization and the higher resolution cam for ease of use and warranty?

Scarodactyl
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#2 Post by Scarodactyl » Mon Jan 13, 2020 6:23 pm

An integrated camera is planned obsolescence. Hooking up a dslr is at most a pain once. After that you can swap in another camera as easily as changing a lens.

Chris Dee
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#3 Post by Chris Dee » Mon Jan 13, 2020 6:50 pm

If you do go the DSLR route and plan to use it's live view function on a monitor via HDMI, do your research on live view output resolution. They can vary considerably and some models reduce the resolution while recording video. That was something I wished I'd known beforehand, but is seldom mentioned.

david_b
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#4 Post by david_b » Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:04 pm

Here's a manufacturer's table of DSLR & Mirrorless cameras suitable for microscopy - those that have Liveview via USB should be fine.
Canon is a popular choice at a reasonable price point and Canon Utilities works well for camera control from a computer.
https://www.lmscope.com/en/Camera_Ranking_en.html

jfiresto
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Location: Northern Germany

Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#5 Post by jfiresto » Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:58 pm

david_b wrote:
Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:04 pm
Here's a manufacturer's table of DSLR & Mirrorless cameras suitable for microscopy...
https://www.lmscope.com/en/Camera_Ranking_en.html
The 'lmscope' ratings suggest many good things to look for, but are not entirely consistent. Take the first two cameras I looked up.

They rank the E-PL7 at number 93 and penalize it 8000 points and 21 places, for not having remote control software, when it does have that and remote live view – over wifi with a smart phone or tablet, rather than over USB(?) and HDMI, respectively.

They rank the DMC-GH2 at number 130 and penalize it 10000 points and 30 places, for not having a live view zoom, live view over HDMI or an adequate color depth, when it has the first two and its DXO color depth is higher than cameras they rate (4000 points) as being adequate.

I would take the ratings and rankings with a grain of salt.
-John

Trigon
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Dec 08, 2019 3:37 am

Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#6 Post by Trigon » Thu Jan 16, 2020 3:32 am

really great responses everybody. definitely added some perspective and will skip on the integrated in favour of a suitable dslr.

jfiresto
Posts: 150
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2019 8:19 am
Location: Northern Germany

Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#7 Post by jfiresto » Thu Jan 16, 2020 8:38 am

I would also consider mirrorless, interchangeable lens system cameras, as you probably will not be looking through the viewfinder. (I would have to use a step ladder and it would be kind of awkward.)

Mirrorless cameras introduced a few innovations useful to microscopy that were missing from contemporary DSLRs, for example, tilting view screens and anti-shock measures. As a result, you can find older, very serviceable, used examples and save some money. Mirrorless cameras also have a much shorter optical path, the magic words being "short focal flange distance". Often you can bring the camera's image sensor close enough to a microscope photo port image: using cheap mounting adapters without any lenses. With the extra I would spend on a good DSLR adapter for one of my microscopes, I could buy three, perfectly respectable, used mirrorless cameras!
-John

apochronaut
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#8 Post by apochronaut » Fri Jan 17, 2020 12:08 am

I would second the vote for a mirrorless body. Often, a person comes to microscopy from being somewhat or intimately acquainted with photography. They see the microscope as just another lens option for their camera. They have it backwards. The microscope potential needs to come first and then choose an appropriate camera to maximize that potential, otherwise you can be doomed to struggle with a pair of mismatched tools. DSLRs at one time were the only choice, because they were the top dog in terms of being able to capture the resolution that fine microscopes can provide. That is no longer the case, and many mirrorless cameras overcome the bulk of the shortcomings that DSLRs are burdened with in their ability to execute fine photomicrography.

Scarodactyl
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#9 Post by Scarodactyl » Fri Jan 17, 2020 3:06 am

Mirrorless is great, but just triple check that they have all the features you need. Some of the Canon ones won't connect with their EOS utility, for instance, which is problematic.

Hobbyst46
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#10 Post by Hobbyst46 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:08 am

Scarodactyl wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 3:06 am
Mirrorless is great, but just triple check that they have all the features you need. Some of the Canon ones won't connect with their EOS utility, for instance, which is problematic.
In fact, none of the Canon EOS-M cameras can be controlled via the EOS utility (or any other software) except the EOS-M50 (and perhaps newer EOS-M... models than the M50, if such exists). The EOS-R can, but costs much higher.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

apochronaut
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#11 Post by apochronaut » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:34 pm

Of course one has to choose a mirrorless camera to suit one's needs just as is the case with choosing any tool. Canon isn't the only company making cameras.

david_b
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Re: DSLR or Integrated?

#12 Post by david_b » Fri Jan 17, 2020 9:01 pm

The EOS RP is a reasonably priced mirrorless camera which can be controlled by EOS Utilities.

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