Microscopes for veterinary use – Buying Guide & Comparison


If you are short on time and you just want to find the best microscope for veterinary use, this short paragraph should help you get exactly the model you need. According to our research, the VanGuard 1421BRI is the best as it is versatile, well-made, and fit to serve you whenever you need ti the most. What’s more, this clinical microscope has been outfitted with a halogen lighting system of which the brightness can be customized using the integrated Koehler illumination. Given the fact that this particular microscope has been designed to withstand the test of time, you won’t have to replace it too soon. Based on what we found about it, it appears that the VanGuard model is tailored to the needs of people working in vet clinics and other laboratories where diagnostics are set on a regular basis with the help of such a device. If the VanGuard 1421BRI is unavailable, your second option should be the VanGuard 1210CM.


What are the best microscopes for vet clinics? This is a difficult question to provide an answer to, and that’s because you first have to assess your requirements before choosing a particular model. While some vets might be focused on analyzing cytology samples, others strictly need a handy microscope that they can take with them wherever they might have to go. This last one can typically be utilized for looking at parasites, for example. For more information, check out our guide.


What is the type you need?

Not all vet practices are the same, in that it’s probably unlikely that the same person performing bacteriological and cytological examinations does the same with ectoparasites and various other living organisms that might not require the same powerful magnification range as the first situation asks for.

As such, you need to think things beforehand and decide on the kind of microscope that will be most useful to you. Handheld alternatives aren’t particularly excellent if you are looking to get high-quality images, and that’s because they’re mostly built to meet your expectations under certain momentary circumstances. If you don’t go out on the field every day, such a model might be a good option if the occasion ever arises.

Hundreds and hundreds of compound microscopes get ruined every year because of corrosive materials that are traditionally used in heartworm and fecal testing. Besides, a compound unit is thought of as being cumbersome as you’ll have to get a lower-end alternative that works with batteries and that might not be as high-tech as you want it to be.

A high-quality option is best when employed in your lab or clinic. This way, you’ll be able to preserve it for as long as possible as nothing will prevent you from placing it in a corner where it doesn’t get exposed to dangers, harmful substances, or unadvised people who might not know how to use it properly.


Monocular, binocular, or trinocular?

Monocular units aren’t all that different compared to their binocular counterparts, but some people find them harder to work with. Binocular choices are far more common and considered somewhat more user-friendly. As a general rule, a monocular microscope offers great results if you’re looking to purchase a model for a kid as he or she might yet have close-set eyes that make it difficult for the child to look through two eyepieces.

Trinocular models have this name because a camera is added to the two eyepieces. This way, you won’t ever have to use your separate digital camera to capture the image of the sample as the device will do so on its own. Plus, the resolution of built-in cameras for microscopes is usually better than that of a pocket digital camera.



Some argue that the best veterinary microscope comes with a low-voltage tungsten lamp. However, various manufacturing brands have started to include halogen bulbs in their illumination systems, and these do a rather good job if your main focus is photomicrography.

The light source can be either above or below the sample and here is where you have to decide whether that’s an important consideration for what you have in mind. LED systems are also available these days, and they’re quite efficient as you won’t have to replace the bulbs quite as often as in the case with the other two we’ve mentioned.

Final thoughts

Make sure to give some thought to your needs before deciding on a certain model and try to imagine whether you’ll be the only user or more people will utilize the microscope, as well. While it is an important factor to mull over, the price should not be the sole detail you should take into account. If you do decide to go for a low-budget alternative, it’s very likely that it will gather dust in a corner as you won’t be pleased with its performance.



Top microscopes for veterinary use reviews in 2017


To make it easier for you to select the best veterinary medicine microscope, we have gathered a set of the critically acclaimed choices out there. We’ve showcased them below, so be sure to throw an eye on them if you haven’t made up your mind just yet.



VanGuard 1421BRI


Everyone in the veterinary field has heard about VanGuard at least once, and that’s because this manufacturer is a top choice of many private practice owners whether they buy consumables or electronic devices made by this brand.

The 1421BRI has been outfitted with a binocular head and a halogen illumination system of which the brightness can be adjusted depending on your needs. Plus, the 360-degree angle and the VIOS infinity-corrected optical system make two useful features that you ought to keep in mind.

Since this is a rather hefty clinical microscope, it might not be the right choice if you’ve been searching for a portable alternative. Nonetheless, due to the fact that it boasts a plethora of helpful features, this model should make the top five units on your list. Plus, a clear diffusing filter, a spare 20-watt lamp, and a spare 250V fuse can all be found in the box.


Buy from Amazon.com for ($1412.22)





VanGuard 1210CM


In some respects, the 1210CM isn’t all that different from the model we have talked about earlier on. The fact of the matter is that the only detail that really sets these units apart consists of the head as this one has been outfitted with a monocular one instead of a binocular one.

Other than that, the VanGuard 1210CM shares most of its features with its formerly mentioned counterpart. The halogen illumination system proves its worth, and the fact that you can customize the brightness level as you deem necessary is a net bonus that needs to be considered.

Boasting a stain-resistant, durable cast metal body and an ergonomic design, this model is a great addition to any busy practice where a lot of things tend to happen all of the time, and there are many samples to process and analyze. Besides, it’s considerably more affordable than other options.


Buy from Amazon.com for ($476.17)





AmScope T490B-10M


If you’d like to invest in an all-American microscope, there shouldn’t be too many things stopping you from taking this unit into account. On the one hand, it’s a trinocular option, which means that you’ll be able to take pictures of your specimens with the help of the 10-megapixel camera boasted by the unit.

What’s more, the microscope offers the benefit of a more than generous magnification range that goes from 40x to 2000x, and that suggests that the unit takes the cake with regard to versatility and convenience. You’ll be able to analyze the structure of a lot of samples if you decide to go for this product.

As is the case with the previously discussed choices, this particular model comes with halogen illumination. Something that’s worth noting is that the product is accompanied by proprietary software with the help of which you’ll be able to edit and measure your images if you own a Windows computer or laptop.


Buy from Amazon.com for ($539.98)





AmScope T490B


Since it’s more affordable than some other units out there, the T490B has become quite a popular choice among veterinarians and scientists working in different other fields. The model has a magnification range of 40x to 1600x which, in most situations, is more than enough you might need.

The T490B unit has been equipped with a myriad of desirable characteristics that you will be able to take advantage of. A halogen lighting system is available, as well as an Abbe condenser and a 2-layer mechanical stage. The only factor that sets the difference between the T490B and the AmScope unit we’ve described above is that this one does not include the digital camera.

Since a 10-megapixel camera compatible with such a microscope can be quite expensive, you will be able to choose a lower-resolution one if you don’t have the budget for the expense. Some owners argue that the lighting could have been better.


Buy from Amazon.com for ($288.88)





AmScope B120C


The B120C is one of those low-budget options that you simply have to mull over because it isn’t particularly limited, it does precisely what it is supposed to do, and works ideal for all educational and biological purposes.

The LED illumination source that this model has been outfitted with makes it stand out from the crowd as it is true that LED bulbs are considerably cheaper compared to their tungsten or fluorescent counterparts, but that doesn’t make them any less useful. In a sense, you won’t have to spend a lot of money on getting a replacement bulb.

From what we have gathered by going through the ratings and reviews acquired by this model, it appears that the optics are clear and bright and that it works great. On occasion, the manufacturing brand has even replaced power adapters of people who had accidentally received a European-style one. Teachers recommend it for educational applications, as well.


Buy from Amazon.com for ($195)




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