A microscope can help you look at things that are not visible to the naked eye, such as bacteria. However, if you don't know how to properly focus a microscope, you won't be able to see these objects. If you want the best focus on the microscope, you will need to position it correctly, focus on the sample, and magnify it so that you can see it.
Method 1 of 3: Position the Microscope
Step 1. Find a flat, well-lit area to set up the microscope
If you want to have the best viewing experience with the microscope, it is important that you place it in a flat place where there is a lot of light so that you can see what you are doing. A sturdy table or desk in a well-lit room will work great.
Step 2. Turn on the light
The first step in using the microscope is to turn on the light. Make sure it's plugged in and turned on. A light will appear under the microscope stage.
The stage is the flat, plate-shaped surface located on the microscope. Its function is to hold the slides that you will observe
Step 3. Use the lowest magnification
Adjust the turret so that it positions the lowest magnification. This could be 4X or 10X depending on the type of microscope you use. It is very important that you start with the lowest magnification in order to achieve the best focus under the microscope.
- The turret is the rotating part of the microscope located on the stage. It will have three or four objective lenses attached.
- The objective lenses are the magnifying glasses that are attached to the revolver. They will be labeled with their respective magnification level, which are generally 4X, 10X, 40X, and 100X. They will also be color-coded for added convenience.
Step 4. Place the slide
Place the slide under the objective on the microscope stage. Make sure to center the object you want to zoom directly below the target. Use the clamps on the stage to hold the slide.
Make sure the slide is approximately 1/4 inch (0.6 cm) away from the target. If you want to adjust the distance, move the stage up or down
Method 2 of 3: Focus the Microscope
Step 1. Adjust the coarse focus knob
Start focusing on the subject by adjusting the coarse focus knob. This will be the larger of the two knobs located next to the microscope. Turn the knob clockwise and counterclockwise until you see the best possible image through the eyepiece.
There is a chance that adjusting the coarse focus knob may not give you optimal clarity. The coarse focus knob is used to focus primarily on the subject so that the fine focus knob can be effective
Step 2. Adjust the fine focus knob
After adjusting the coarse focus knob, you can adjust the focus by turning the fine focus knob. This will be the smaller of the two knobs located next to the microscope. Just as you did with the coarse focus knob, turn it clockwise and counterclockwise until you see the clearest image possible through the eyepiece.
Step 3. Adjust the platen
You can adjust the stage up and down, as well as left and right. Adjusting it up and down will zoom in and out on the object. Adjust it to the left and right in case the object you are observing is not centered below the target.
When adjusting the stage, be sure to prevent the objective lens from coming into contact with the slide
Method 3 of 3: Improve Magnification
Step 1. Increase the magnification level
Once you get the best possible image of the object you want to observe, you can increase the magnification level. To do this, turn the revolver one click clockwise. Now the next objective lens will be pointing towards the slide.
Step 2. Adjust the focus
Focus the microscope the same way you did at the lowest magnification. First, use the coarse focus knob. Then use the fine focus knob. Finally, adjust the platen.
Focus the objective lenses before moving to the next magnification level. If you omit the objective lenses, you will not achieve the best possible focus
Step 3. Repeat the augmentation process
If you need a higher magnification, you can repeat the process with the next magnification. Don't forget to focus on each objective lens before moving on to the next one.
- All eyes are different. What is in focus for you may not be perfectly focused for someone else.
- If you use a stereomicroscope, you can look with both eyes. However, the process is the same.
- Sometimes scientists use scanning electron microscopes and transmission electron microscopes to view samples with an electron beam instead of using a light. These microscopes are very expensive and require training for effective use.
- Do not touch the lens glass with your finger. Doing so will make it stained and difficult to see through.
- Don't forget to adjust the objective lenses when you increase the magnification level.