I was playing with a big toy magnifying glass with my daughters one day, and thought, “hmm, I wonder if I can use this with a camera”. Sure enough, it worked, but the big plastic lens in the toy had quality issues. With a better lens, this could be a really interesting thing!

So I did a bit of googling and found the site Optics Planet. They have many different magnifiers, from very cheap models to “Whoa! That’s pricey!” items from Carl Zeiss.

I settled on the next tier down from Zeiss, which is a range from Bausch and Lomb called Hastings Triplet Loupes. They are a three element design, and had good quality reviews. I also liked how it had a metal body with a loop for a lanyard or other tether. I chose the 10x model, and placed my order.

It showed up this past Friday and exceeded my expectations for quality. I took this photo of a dime to check it out…

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Whoa!

Here’s how it looks to use it with the phone…

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So I went for a hike that evening and brought the magnifier with me. Got some neat pictures of plants and animals…

Thistle Lichen Ladybug Baby Grasshopper Finger Clover Bud

Go forth and capture the tiny world around us. It’s easy!