LTL - Light Microscope (Olympus BX60M with camera)

Light Microscope (Olympus BX60M with camera)
Device: Olympus BX60M Light Microscope with 3CCD video camera

General Information

  • Device: Olympus BX60M Light Microscope with 3CCD video camera
  • Contact Persons: Matti Tomi, Alexander Savin
  • Location: Clean Room, room 160e.

Hitachi HV-F31F CCD camera

  • Device: Hitachi Kokusai Electric HV-F31F 3-CCD Color Video Camera
  • Paper manual in the Cryo Hall, short tutorial available below
  • Software: Hitachi CamView (simple, for taking pictures),
    Matlab (for contrast analysis)


  • Cell type: 1/3" 3CCD
  • Resolution: 1024x768 pixels
  • Color space: RGB or YUV4:2:2
  • Frame rate: up to 30 fps
  • Mount: C-mount
  • Connection: FireWire

Video settings

  • RGB color
  • YUV4:2:2 color
    • Colors subsampled to store more luminance detail than color detail; 8 bits for luma and 4 bits for Cr and Cb (16 bits/pixel in total)
    • Reduced bandwidth enables higher frame rates
    • Almost no visual difference to RGB as perceived by the human eye
    • Possible modes: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
  • If you intend to do color analysis or something similar it's better to use RGB. For viewing purposes you can just as well use YUV.
  • When saving pictures, remember that JPEG compression also uses color subsampling by default
  • Frame rate can of course be lower than the maximum value
  • With lower resolutions than the native 1024x768 only a smaller area of pixels in the center of the cell is read. Thus the accuracy remains the same but the imaged area is smaller.

Tutorial for the Hitachi CamView

  • Start Hitachi CamView from the Clean room computer's desktop
  • On the menu click Camera → Connect → New
  • Select the video settings you wish to use and press OK
  • Adjust position, zoom and focus on the microscope. Notice that there might be a slight difference in the focus between the camera and the oculars.
  • Open Control → Parameters and play with the settings
  • Useful parameters: white balance mode=auto, gain mode=auto, shutter mode=auto, gamma=off
  • If you want to save the current screen to a file click Control → Stop to stop the live view, then Capture → Bitmap to save the image and finally Control → Start to return to live image

Measuring distances and angles

The easiest way to measure distances and angles in a captured image is to use the Irfanview viewer program that has been installed on the Clean room computer.

  • open the image in Irfanview by double-clicking it
  • exit the full-screen mode by pressing Enter
  • press F12 to open the Paint dialog
  • on the Paint dialog, click on the button that has a triangular ruler on it
  • drag a line on the image by holding down the left mouse button
  • a dialog box opens and tells you the length and the angle of the line you drew
  • for the length in microns, see the line with the correct magnification in the end

The calibration from pixels to microns (see table below) is based on measurements with the Micronova SEM and may not be entirely accurate. If you perform a better calibration, please let me know.

Magnification pixels/micron 1024 pixels → x microns
5x 1.09 939.4
10x 2.18 469.7
20x 4.36 234.86
50x 10.9 93.94
100x 21.8 46.97
Hitachi HV-F31F CCD camera
Hitachi HV-F31F CCD camera
This service is provided by:

Low Temperature Laboratory

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