USB Microscope Buying Guide

There are affiliate links in this post. Read our disclosure policy to learn more.

Jump to Winner of USB Microscope Top 10 Rankings!

You may be buying this item for yourself, your children or to gift to someone else, but there are a few things you should check first.


Software Compatibility

Most digital microscopes require a computer in order to display. Without a viewfinder it is not possible to use the microscope on its own. What you need in order to use the microphone with a computer is a software. This software will help you run the feed from the microscope camera on your computer. Ensure that your computer and the operating system meet the requirements of the camera software.

Without this, you will not be able to use the digital microscope. Most USB microscope manufacturers provide software that works on most popular operating systems. This includes Linux, Windows, Mac and more. Check compatibility before purchase since some of the microscopes will not work with iOS machines.


Zoom Power

If you are buying a microscope for kids, a handheld microscope is usually okay unless they have a science project with specific demands. If you are a hobbyist who needs a microscope but do not have the budget for a full fledged microscope, a digital microscope should work.

Make sure your zoom requirements are met by the microscope, since some microscope cameras are not that powerful when they come with handheld microscopes.


Stand and lighting

Handheld microscopes also come with a stand and a light to generate greater precision when looking at something. The light ensures that you are able to see under the microscope effectively while the stand stabilizes things. Without a good stand and light, using a microscope can become difficult.

While looking at things at a cellular level, the slightest movement can completely shift the focus. Make sure you have a sturdy table or surface to keep it one which will support the microscope without moving.


Capture Button

Some USB microscopes come with a capture button. Rather than being a normal button through, this is a capacitive button, sensitive to the touch. This means you don’t have to risk shaking the microscope in order to take a snap. You can also capture images using the software tools available with the microscope.



A typical USB microscope costs between USD 20 – USD 80. The difference in cost is usually on account of the make and material. However, some are more feature rich than others and come with better software solutions. The important thing to consider when buying is to make sure the microscope is stable, easy to use and has the magnification you need. If you are buying a microscope for kids, you should be able to make the purchase in less than USD 50.


This item is #1 ranked on USB Microscope Top 10 Rankings