Dissecting camera specifications: a field guide for biologists


Biologists that use, or are interested in using, microscope cameras and don’t speak engineering


Clarity on the relevance of camera specs to biological experimentation


Microscope camera specifications include a seemingly dazzling array of information on camera capability. But the impact those numbers have on what a biologist can and cannot do with that camera, or how a biologist can use those numbers to compare two cameras, may not be readily apparent.


One of our goals at Hamamatsu is to facilitate scientific discovery by helping biologists focus on their main interest—biology. In this article we discuss the influence different specs have on imaging, so that biological researchers can make the most effective use of their microscope camera, whether it’s using a new sCMOS camera for lightsheet microscopy of zebrafish brains or an interline CCD that’s tracking morphological changes in yeast.


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