Magnification ..what do you use?

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Clavdivs, Nov 17, 2019.

  1. Clavdivs

    Clavdivs Well-Known Member

    I was wondering what older collectors use for magnification? Is there a "go to" loop or magnifier that is reasonably priced? I have seen some desk type magnifiers on articulating arms that look promising - but you never know as the reviews are mixed (and I don't place much stock in online reviews anyway). This type of set up may appeal to me.
    I am also not sure what magnification level I should look at 3X, 10X.. just not sure.

    As we get older this is more of a problem and frustration.
    I wear bifocals but I find them generally useless for almost any task.. and probably take my glasses on and off 50 times a day.

    I'd rather not have to set up to take a photograph - just be able to pick up a coin and examine.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
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  3. Theodosius

    Theodosius Unrepentant Fine Style Freak! Supporter

    Try progressive lenses in your glasses instead of bifocals. They help a lot.

    I have one of those lighted, articulated magnifiers you mount on the edge of a desk. I find it very helpful for more than just coining. It is a Xyled mt10 with 7 watts of led light.

    For a hand magnifier I have an Eschenbach mobilux 5x 20d 140 model. They are expensive, about $100, but the built-in light is very good and they have a large, very clear magnifier. I usually take it with me to shows (where the lighting is never very good). I also use it a lot sitting at my desk.

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  4. Inspector43

    Inspector43 72 Year Collector

    I don't think there is an answer for all. I don't like progressive lenses. I can't differentiate between the levels and usually trip. I have a 5X pocket magnifier that I have carried for most of 70 years and it works great for me. I have a lighted magnifier on a arm but it is hard to work with and get in focus. I broke down and bought a small microscope with light and USB connection to the desktop. It is easy to set a magnification you want for different types of examination. And, it is great for photos. When you use the scope, if you like what you see there is no set up - just hit the photo button. And it is great for my 76 year old eyes.
    Good luck and keep in touch about how you get along with this issue.
    MixtureNo79 likes this.
  5. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    Laugh all you want. I have two functional eyes and a pair of $1 Dollar Tree +3.5 diopter (strongest they sell) readers gives me a portable binocular microscope over my trifocals. For more money you can buy +6 glasses elsewhere but too strong will make it hard to converge the image depending on the condition of you eye muscles. I no longer use the clip on magnifiers shown in this old photo and favored by some older dealers I knew because I prefer seeing in 3D - something a $100 squinter glass can not do.
    They make lighted versions but I don't know how they would work over glasses.
  6. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    I use an inexpensive 7X plastic loupe (~$5) that meets 90% of my needs. For greater magnification I use a stereo microscope. A decent 10x/30x stereo microscope ( will run you around $100.
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  7. tibor

    tibor Well-Known Member

    Like @gsimonel , I also use a plastic loupe. At my age, 62+ and
    age appropriate eye sight, it does the job.
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  8. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    I have none, actually was looking them up on Amazon....
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  9. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    I have posted this before:

    A few years ago I bought a floor model medical magnifier and placed it by my desk. Works well for lighting and magnifying coins, lighting for my photography, and is easily accessible. I love it. Use it for my other serious hobbies too. Got it at Amazon for under $100 USD. Uses standard 8" Ring Florescent bulb, AC power. Best investment for my eyes! I am seriously thinking of getting another for my wife's crafting hobbies.

    Esthology Premium Magnifying Floor Lamp 5 Diopter w/ Rolling Base
    About the Product
    • Complete multi-function magnifying lamp
    • 360 degree swiveling head
    • Five spoke base for additional stability
    • Ideal for medical, dental, cosmetology, skin care or working with small-parts
    • Smooth rolling magnifying floor lamp with light
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  10. Collecting hand magnifier's are almost a hobby for me . Really nice old ones in antique shops to fancy new ones from amazon . What works for you ! My eyes change during the day from dawn to dusk so does my magnifier . Also when I photograph coins or use my computer microscope or anything else I need good eye sight for I found doing it the morning is best .
  11. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    I've been thinking of purchasing a computer microscope. My fear is that the magnification will be too strong. Any recommendations?
  12. Islander80-83

    Islander80-83 Well-Known Member

    My eyes, I'm 15! :hilarious::hilarious:
  13. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    There will come a time in your life. I never needed glasses until I was 42. Overnight, my arms got too short! I couldn't read without holding the material out from my body. From reading glasses to bifocals took about 10 years. Now I have cataracts (small so far) which also effect what I see. Good luck with those young eyes. Take good care of them.
    Islander80-83 likes this.
  14. yarm

    yarm Junior Member

    Large 4x 30x LED lit.

  15. David Atherton

    David Atherton Flavian Fanatic

    I use 2 Bausch and Lomb Hastings triplets - 7x and 10x. Also an antique Bausch and Lomb 3x wooden handled magnifying glass.

    I have various other magnifyers, but the ones mentioned above are my daily go to lenses.
  16. Greg Bayes

    Greg Bayes Where's the loo?

    I use a Derma Scout lighted magnifier (can be found on eBay and Amazon @ about $300). I have tried a microscope style, loupes, and various other configurations and they didn't work all that well for my old eyes. As the name implies the Derma Scout and Derma Scout ll are designed to examine skin but for me, nothing beats it.
  17. Inspector43

    Inspector43 72 Year Collector

    I use a Leuchtturn USB Microscope 2.0 Megapixel With a stand. It works real good for my 76 year old eyes. Here are a couple of typical pictures from it. Keep in mind that I am still learning how to get the best out of it.
    1889-CC VAM-5A DieBreaks Rev Close.jpg 1931 S Rev.jpg
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  18. TheFinn

    TheFinn Well-Known Member

    At 58 I don't need glasses, but am a bit near-sighted, which helps for coins and reading.
    I use a 20x for super details, and 5x/7x for everything else. And I only use Hastings Triplets to eliminate distortion.
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  19. juris klavins

    juris klavins Well-Known Member

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 18, 2019
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  20. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter Khnum-Hotep

    Here's what I use.

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  21. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    If you don't commonly lose such items I would refer you to Amazon.

    These come in many different magnification. It is one of the widest Hasting triplet apochromatic designs. Dollar store magnifiers are usually one lens, and can not produce a consistent flat visual. This apochromatic will have no color diffusion and will be flat focus across the whole lens as it has 3 to compensate. I think they run from 3x to 30x in different models. For grading many say the 3x is best , varieties 10x or higher. I use the one with the neck loop when I go to shows. Cheap for a apochromatic len. Jim
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