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QX-5 Computer Microscope
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List price: £79.99
Our price: £57.97
Usually dispatched within 24 hours
Average customer rating: 3.75 out of 5
1 star1 star1 star1 starNo star
Sales rank: 150

Product Information

Media: CD-ROM
Manufacturer : Digital Blue
Release data : 19 November, 2004

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  • A selection of product reviews

    1 star1 star1 star1 starNo star    Don't expect too much and you wont be dissapointed

    This is a rather fun toy microscope that has a built in CMOS detector so that images can only be viewed via a Windows PC. The all plastic construction (including lenses) limits the accuracy of focussing and the on-screen image resolution is adequate rather than good. This microscope was originally marketed by Intel and built by toy manufacturer Mattel as the QX-3. Now Digital Blue have taken it on after Intel discontinued production. The QX-5 is an upgrade having 640 x 480 pixel resolution rather than just 352 x 288 in the original QX-3. Have a look at for very detailed scientific description of the original QX-3 and advice on what to use it for. Every school in the UK was given one of these in 2002.

    I installed the QX-5 software under Windows XP Pro on a 1.2MHz Athlon PC and the software worked fine. The only downside is that the software changes the CRT screen refresh rate to 60Hz and doesn’t switch it back to the flicker free 85Hz. So a trip to ‘Start, Control Panel, Display, Settings, Advanced, Monitor’ is required to set the graphics back to their correct setting (check these before you run the software). Otherwise the software and USB microscope run very well. It comes with a small prepared ‘slide’ (a cardboard and plastic array of things like insect parts) plus a reasonable archive of digital images which you can add to.

    Once on the PC the 640x480 images can be manipulated and pasted etc, and it does time-lapse for things like crystal growth (but there's not much control of the time-lapse intervals). I have a QX-5 at home for the kids, but like most kids with microscopes they can get bored with it after running out of things to view - so web and book searches for ideas is useful.

    The QX-5 has not got the resolution of even a standard 'school' compound microscope though, largely because you see it all 'enlarged' on a large computer screen, it uses plastic lenses and has a low resolution detector (but you can share the view with friends). So you may find the QX-5 a real disappointment if you expect too much of it in terms of image quality. However it is rather fun to use and has transmission + reflection white LED light sources built in to view specimens. The software is also very kid friendly and the increased resolution over the QX-3 is very welcome. So overall, recommended for pre-teen budding scientists.

    1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star    QX5 Great For The Kids.

    I purchased the QX5 Microscope for my son's birthday a few week's ago and i must admit that it is great fun to use.

    My son loves the QX5 so much because he enjoys discovering the new thing's from the garden and when he goes on school trips to the local forest. He logs all the pictures and strange imges on his pc which is great for a product priced around the £70 mark.

    Great buy for kids keeps them occupied for hours and a great learning tool for them too.

    1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star    Age has no restriction for this

    This is a wonderful piece of kit. All ages can benefit and have fun using it. The software allows movies and stills to be taken from the view and the fact that the stand is removable allows larger, bulkier things to be looked at in detail, without having to slice them up and sandwich in a slide. You can also add colour, text and other 'fun' features to the photos you take. It is simple to keep pictures on the computer afterwards. Even I could do it, without having to consult a book, (which is good as there isn't one!). It is so much easier to view the magnified items on a screen than look down the view finder of a conventional scope. This is a must for all educational establishments and inquisitive minds!
    A real bargain at this price.

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