- Microscope Attachment - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Rollei microscope adapter

Franke & Heidecke



Image of Rollei microscope adapter

To attach a Rolleiflex or Rolleicord camera to a microscope. The attachment consists of two parts:

  • Micro Tube. A short tube that connects to the microscope draw tube and provides a bayonet to connect to the Rollei lens.
  • Micro Prism. A reflex viewer that can optionally be used between the Micro Tube and the camera. The Micro Prism contains a fixed prism to divert a portion of the light into a focusing telescope.
The device is quite complicated. The Micro Tube is supplied with a removable bayonet, there are three different sizes of bayonet to suit the particular camera. The Micro Prism was always supplied with a size 1 bayonet, this could be interchanged for the bayonet of the Micro Tube. In this way the Micro Prism would be able to be used with any Micro Tube/camera set up.

Instructions. Box for Micro Tube.

Contaflex microscope adapter



West Germany

Image of Contaflex microscope adapter

The adapter clamps to the eyepiece tube of the microscope, a ring screws into the filter ring of the camera and attaches to the adapter via a dovetail flange.

Asahi Pentax Microscope Adapter II

Asahi Optical Co.



Image of Asahi Pentax Microscope Adapter II

The adapter consists of three parts: a tube that screws to the camera; a tube that clamps to the microscope draw tube and holds the eye-piece, the two tubes have a bayonet connection; a 'light exclusion' tube that replaces the eye-piece when it is not used.

Instructions. Box.

Micro Adapter

Kodak A.G.


West Germany

Image of Micro Adapter

This adapter is for Retina cameras. The bracket clamps to the camera and is a sliding fit to the draw tube of the microscope. The adapter includes a focusing eye-piece and fixed beam splitter.


Code Names:
14 218.

Leica Microscope Attachment

E. Leitz G.M.B.H.


West Germany

Image of Leica Microscope Attachment

This adapter attaches a screw-mount Leica camera to a microscope. Comprises: AGC shutter, speeds 1 - 1/125 B T, with flash synchronisation; Focusing telescope and beam splitter; 1/3x tube to attach camera to shutter.

Code Names:

Periflex Microscope Attachment

K.G. Corfield (Sales) Ltd

Conventional two-part adapter.

Instruction sheet.

Exakta microscope adapter

Ihagee Kamerawerk AG.


German Democratic Republic

Image of Exakta microscope adapter

This is the early form of Exakta microscope adapter with a hinged body to change eyepieces. Extension tubes would have been used as required. This design was produced before World war II and for a short time afterwards.

Exakta microscope adapter

Ihagee Kamerawerk AG.


German Democratic Republic

Image of Exakta microscope adapter

To attach an Exakta camera to a microscope. The attachment includes a dovetail flange that fits some models of microscope body for low-power work. Comprises:

  • Clamping ring, attaches to the microscope draw tube and holds the eyepiece.
  • Ring with dovetail flange, fits into the clamping ring via the flange, the screw thread attaches to the extension tubes.
  • Extension tubes, 15 mm and 30 mm.
  • Camera adapter with a screw thread to fit the extension tubes and a bayonet to fit the camera.


Photography using a microscope can be carried out in two ways, either with or without the microscope's eyepiece.

High Power
A compound microscope consists of a short focus objective and an eyepiece that magnifies the image produced by the objective, the total magnification being the product of the two lenses. For photographic work the eyepiece is normally used. Where possible the lens of the camera is removed, the optics of the microscope alone being used to form the image. Where the camera lens is fixed then it is set at infinity. For visual use the microscope forms a virtual image at the near point of the eye (around 250 mm from the eye), to form a real image in the camera the microscope has to be re-focused by increasing the subject to objective distance or by raising the eyepiece, in either case the effect is to move the real image produced by the objective to below the front focal point of the eyepiece.

As ordinary objectives were corrected for visual use a yellow/green filter was previously recommended for monochrome photographic work. Ordinary eyepieces could produce a curved field depending on the magnifications in use, this caused little problem for visual use, for photographic use eyepieces were available that reduced this curvature.

The magnification at the film plane is the magnification of the microscope (objective magnification x eyepiece magnification) x distance of the film plane from the eyepiece in millimetres / 250 (the exact measurement is from the rear focal point of the eyepiece which is a short distance above the eyepiece).

Microscope adapters are able to be easily separated so that the subject can be inspected visually or the eyepiece changed. Some adapters have a small telescope included which can make viewing easier, a prism or mirror being used to split the light path.

The diagram on the right shows the light path through a simplified compound microscope set up for photography. For visual use the real image produced by the objective would lie inside the front focal plane of the eyepiece, light rays exiting the eyepiece would then diverge to the eye and be seen as a virtual image.

Low Power
For lower power work, where the eyepiece is not used, the microscope objective simply acts as a short-focus lens. The same microscope adapter can be used. On some microscopes (notably the L and N stands developed by Zeiss) the microscope tube attaches to the body by a dovetailed flange, some microscope adapters have a similar flange and can be fitted directly to the microscope body; for a greater range of magnification a camera bellows unit could be used.

Company Details:



Camera Accessories

Lens - Filters

  - Supplementary

  - Attachments

  - Prisms & Mirrors

  - Hoods

View-finders, View-meters

Rangefinders, Distance Meters

Reflex Finders

Focusing Magnifiers

Delayed-Action, Self-Timers


Tripods and Stands

Flash Equipment


Close Up - Stands

  - Framing & Focusing

  - Bellows & Tubes

  - Lenses

  - Meters & Calculation

  - Microscope Attachment



Film Format Adapters

Film Handling