I need some some Magnifier for SMD soldering so I bought these Magnifying glasses:


It is good for PCB inspection but it's not for SMD soldering: for 10x magnification glasses need to be only few centimeters away from PCB and for greater magnification, distance is of course smaller so it is not possible to use it for SMD soldering. My question is, is there any cheap solution? I'm not good at optics, but smaller magnification mean larger distance, right? What do you think about these glasses:

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Magnifying-Glasses-2015-Rushed-Top-Fashion-Glass-Surgical-Loupes-1x-1-5x-2x-2-5x-3/32381736388.html?spm=2114.30010308.3.52.SCX8Jl&ws_ab_test=searchweb201556_9,searchweb201602_1_10034_507_10032_10020_10017_10005_10006_10021_10022_10009_10008_10018_10019,searchweb201603_6&btsid=8d9303e9-107a-4a6d-b3b4-eabeec9ed4cc ?

Here are specifications:

Color: Black

Material of Lens: Acrylic Lens

Battery: 3 * LR1130 Button Batteries (included)

Lens: 1.0X / 1.5X / 2.0X / 2.5X / 3.5X

Field of View:

1.0X: 250~350mm

1.5X: 200~300mm

2.0X: 175~275mm

2.5X: 150~250mm

3.5X: 80~120mm

Size of Lens(1pc): 85 * 8.5mm (L * T)

Item Size: 220 * 145 * 55mm / 8.66 * 5.7 * 2.16in (L * W * H)

Package Size: 22.0 * 17.7 * 4.7cm / 8.66 * 6.9 * 1.85in (L * W * H)

Package Weight: 270g / 9.5oz

What does "3.5X: 80~120mm" mean exactly?


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You can purchase an inexpensive USB microscope that can work very well. The main drawback of the inexpensive unit that I use is a small lag when displaying the image. But I quickly got used to the delay.

There are many such microscopes available. I have two identical units purchased from eBay and I assume that Asian suppliers such as Aliexpress or Banggood have them for even less cost.

Use it with an old netbook computer.


To get good magnification at a distance, you need optics with multiple lenses, essentially small telescopes attached to glasses. These are often used by dentists and surgeons. You can find these by searching for "loupe glasses". You'll see many for $200 and up and a few in the $20-$60 range. Look for ones that specify the appropriate operating distance.


Personally, I don't bother with magnifiers at all (even when I'm soldering 0402 parts), it depends on how good your eyesight is, SMD parts are small and the magnifier is just there to make them easier to see, but in the end it's more of a personal preference, use as much magnification as you need to be able to comfortably see the parts. If possible bring some smd parts into a store that sells magnifiers (some office supply stores have them) and have a look at them under the magnifiers, if you can see the parts clearly and you like the magnifier, go for it


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