Project:DSLR Microscope

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DLSR Microscope

DSLR Microscope.jpg
Status: functional with further improvement ongoing
Initiator: Patrick
Materials Used: finite microscope objective, 3D printer
Tools Used: 3D printer
Software Used: 30€

The goal of this project is to make a very high magnification objective for my DSLR camera for macro photography.


A common light microscope objective has similar optics to those found in lenses of a normal camera. However, it manages to get a very high magnification by allowing a very close (fixed) focus distance and thereby a large magnification of the imaged object.

There are two types of objectives used for microscopes - infinite and finite. Finite ones work like a common lens by projecting the image directly at a fixed plane (like a camera sensor). The infinite objectives need a (telephoto) lens focused at - as the name says - infinity in order to create an image on a plane.

Therefore the finite ones only need an adapter to keep the objective at the right distance to the sensor in order to create a image.


The adapter was designed in Fusion360 to fit to a Canon EF bayonet mount. The objective used is a Zeiss 160/- 10/0,25 which has its focal distance at 150 mm from its backside and a RMS or 0.8" diameter x 36 thread-per-inch (tpi) Whitworth thread to attach it.


Due to the missing focusing mechanism and very shallow depth of field it is quite hard to focus something properly with the objective. An improvement would be a slide for the camera/object with a lead screw; optionally with a stepper motor to control it remotely.