Voltlog #296 – Microscope Camera Focus Issue Fixed!

Welcome to a new Voltlog, as you may remember in Voltlog #282 I got a new trinocular microscope and then in Voltlog #292 I got a new camera because the one shipped with the microscope had issues. Banggood till this day did not replace the camera which I believe is defective, they kept asking me to try these various settings in the camera menu to improve the brightness but none worked.

Now to get a good image and have both the camera in focus and the eyepieces you will need some kind of reduction, an optical adapter between the camera and the microscope port. So first I got this SZMCTV 0.3X adapter, after reading some reviews who were claiming this will give the best field of view.

After installing this adapter I noticed the field of view was almost the same as through the eyepiece which is great but I couldn’t get it in perfect focus with the limited adjustment available on the adapter and I was getting this tunnel vision which I couldn’t quite explain but it was obviously not what you want to see.

And so I got this newer wide body 0.5 adapter and installed it on my microscope and the problem was solved I could now get my camera into focus at the same time with the eye pieces but with a loss in the field of view due to the 0.5x adapter. Getting the SZMCTV 0.5X adapter would probably also work, that’s a bit cheaper, but I went with the recommendation of getting the newer type of adapter with better optics.

Voltlog #292 – Hayear Full HD 34MP Microscope Camera Review HY-1139

Welcome to a new Voltlog, you might recognize this, the trinocular microscope which I reviewed in Voltlog #282, it’s a great tool to have especially if you start to feel your eyesight is getting weaker but also if you have good eyesight you can’t possibly solder 0402 passives comfortably or you can’t spot very small problems on soldering joints without something like this.

However I had an issue with the camera, the image is too black and so far there has been no solution provided by Banggood but I am still in contact with them and they’ve told me they are working with the supplier to find a solution but due to the whole Coronavirus (COVID-19) issue, there’s been delays.

So I’ve asked them to send another camera for review, it’s a Hayear branded microscope camera, it’s capable of up to 2K at 30fps and 1080P at 60fps, it has HDMI and USB 2.0 output as well as SD card storage support. The USB output is capable of 1080P at 30fps but that’s okay, cause I will be using this on it’s HDMI output on the 1080p 60fps setting.

Voltlog #289 – InTheMail

Welcome to a new InTheMail, the series that will touch both your passion for electronics and your bank account at the same time. Before I get started I’m gonna take a second to remind you to subscribe to the channel and hit the bell notification icon because that’s the only way you will know for sure when I upload new videos. 

I must say I’m noticing delays in delivery of these packages from China, it started with orders placed mid January and I’m probably going to see some packages lost and never delivered so i recommend you keep an eye on your orders and request a refund when the protection time expires.

Voltlog #282 – Did I get a trinocular microscope for micro-soldering and inspection?

Welcome to a new Voltlog, to save you from waiting, the short answer is yes, I did get a microscope for the lab but before I show you the microscope let’s talk about why I got a microscope and why you might want one. If you are occasionally soldering boards, electronic kits, mostly through hole components or even surface mount down to 0603 and you have good eyesight, then chances are, you don’t need such a microscope, I’ve been doing that for years.

On the other hand, if you want to be able to solder surface mount components smaller than 0603 comfortably or you want to do board level repairs on modern gadgets like smartphones and laptops, then you most definitely need a microscope as it will massively improve the quality of your soldering and the general repair process at your bench. 

Voltlog #265 – FT232H USB to JTAG/I2C/SPI Interface With Python & PyFtdi

Welcome to a new voltlog, today we’re going to be talking about this little board which I designed and assembled myself, it’s a breakout module for the FTDI FT232H which is a usb to serial converter but with a nice twist. This particular chip from FTDI has the built-in Multi-Protocol Synchronous Serial Engine (MPSSE short) which allows you to run a variety of synchronous serial protocols like JTAG, I2C, SPI or simple bit-banging of IOs. You can imagine it can be really useful to be able to interface with a sensor over I2C or SPI straight from your computer over USB through this interface. You wouldn’t need an arduino or other controller in the middle if you plan to do some data acquisition for example.

Voltlog #262 – Is This The Future of Our Hobby?

To be honest I didn’t think we were going to have services like these available so cheap so fast. I mean yes I know pcb prices have been so low in the past couple of years that it no longer makes sense to etch your own PCBs, unless you are in a big hurry. But having smt assembly service so cheap? Soon enough it would not make sense to hand assemble these boards because it would be equally cheap to have them assembled at JLCPCB

Voltlog #261 – InTheMail

Welcome to a new InTheMail, the series that will touch both your passion for electronics and your bank account at the same time.

Voltlog #260 – How do you test usb to serial converters? (CP2103 vs CH340E vs FT232RL)

Welcome to a new Voltlog, today we’re comparing a few different serial to usb adapters and the discussion started ever since I showed the CH340E breakout board I designed in voltlog #249. People wanted to know if this CH340E affordable chip would perform similar to the well known FTDI or Silicon labs chips, and I’m thinking at high throughput and reliability here, the kind of application where you are sending lots of data, fast and you need it to be transferred reliably.

So today I’m going to compare the CH340E with a CP2103, and the FT232RL. I wasn’t sure what measurements to take and how to test these but I devised 2 testing methods.

Voltlog #249 – Making Some USB Serial Converter Boards With CH340E (part 1)

Welcome to a new video, today I’m building a bunch of usb to serial converter boards because if you are into electronics and microcontrollers you will for sure need a bunch of usb to serial converters to connect your boards to a computer for example.

The idea for building these boards started when I found the CH340E converter chip on aliexpress, I like several things about this chip, it was small because it comes in MSOP10 package, it was cheap at about $0.40 a piece and it requires minimal external circuitry, in fact it only needs an external bypass cap.

Voltlog #214 – How bad is a fake apple lightning to 3.5mm audio adapter?

Welcome to a new voltlog, today we’re taking a look at these lightning to 3.5mm audio adapters that you have to use ever since apple removed the 3.5mm jack on the iphone. So you know the story, apple removed the jack and said it’s because they will free-up space inside the phone and it makes it more waterproof but if you ask me that’s bullshit, they removed it to force people to buy bluetooth headphones. But anyway we won’t go into that, this video is about the adapter that they now give people to still be able to use the 3.5mm jack for audio.

This made me wanna take a closer look so here are the two adapters, the plan is to connect a 3.5mm jack, this will provide me with some contacts where I can probe with the oscilloscope. I’m gonna generate a known constant waveform from an app and we’re going to measure that and compare between the two adapters.