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What are some possible problems that used microscopes have?

Unless you have worked with microscopes yourself and unless you know what you are doing, I would not buy them second hand.

How much magnification do I need?

Your compound microscope should be able to magnify from 40x to 400x (having a 4x, 10x, 40x objective).

Should I buy a more expensive microscope first, or should I buy a cheap one and then a better one later?

This is a philosophical question and the opinions diverge on this question.

What are the differences between achromatic and apochromatic objectives?

The different colors of light do not behave equally when passing through the lens system of the objective.

Should I buy a microscope with infinity corrected optics?

Infinity optics allow you to insert filters into the light beam, without changing the focus.

What are phase contrast and DIC? Do I need these?

Phase contrast and Differential Interference Contrast (DIC) are both methods to make unstained, transparent specimens visible.

What are the advantages of research microscopes?

Research microscopes are not commonly used by amateur microscopists, due to their high cost. But you asked, so here is the answer!

Do I need a 100x oil immersion objective?

Oil immersion objectives have a hiĝ resolution but also some disadvantages.

What are the differences between stereo and compound microscopes?

There are two types of light microscopes, the compound microscopes and the stereo microscopes.

What are the differences between brightfield, darkfield and phase contrast?

These are three different microscopic techniques.


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