Jon Elson said:
The good ones have a "working distance" of 4 to 6 inches,
or even more!
This is a spec that SHOULD be listed, just check that any
particular unit has enough.
I made a ring of PCB material, cut a groove so there is an inner
and an outer ring, and soldered 8 while LEDs to it, with series
resistors. Works great, hugs real close to the SIDE of the
microscope body, so you don't lose any of that precious working
distance. Runs off a wall-warp power supply. I've made two
of these now for different scopes, I really like them.
If you have some money to spend go buy Madell SZM7045TR Trinocular
Microscope with Double Bar Boom Stand. It is $590 right now and that is the
best tool for SMD work I ever invested in
It is here:
My advice -- do NOT try to save $70 or so by purchasing a SINGLE bar boom
stand. You'll regret it. Double bar is WAY better.
And if you want to use your soldering iron or whatever (I do all the time)
get an optional 0.5x lens from them. IT serves 2 purposes. First, it
protects the precious objectives from solder fumes so if anything went wrong
you will only have to replace a cheap lens, not expensive objectives.
Second, may be even more important, while reducing magnification (that is
still pretty adequate for even tiniest SMD components) it EXTENDS working
distance so you'll have your microscope healthy 6..8" from the work that
gives you all the room you need for soldering and do other jobs right under
BTW, their fluorescent ring light that comes with the microscope is pretty
fine out of the box, no need for anything else. I don't remember is a spare
tube was included or I bought it separately just to have a spare--it was
long ago--but I still have it in a sealed box.