When looking at an Olympus CH2 or CX-31, which is better?
Posted 25 January 2020 - 02:25 AM
It's probably not a fair comparison as the CX31 is much newer and consequently benefits from the latest advances in optics and is likely to be in better overall condition than a much older microscope.
However, I have owned an Olympus CHA for several years and very recently got myself a second-hand Olympus CX31. Optically I find the the CX31 is superior to the CHA in every way, and in terms of field flatness the improvement is very dramatic. But the CHA is no slouch either, as I found it to vastly outperform a fairly new China-made scope costing around 400 EUR.
See post #25 in this thread: https://www.cloudyni...us-microscopes/
It could be argued that the CHA is mechanically slightly better built although I'd personally rate them roughly equal in that respect. Both contain some plastic parts, and both work well.
In terms of performance-per-$, I guess the CH2 is better. A second-hand CH-2 would probably cost around 200 USD while a second-hand CX31 would cost maybe 1500 USD due to being much newer. The CX31, being targeted at educational audiences and routine applications just like the CH series, is AFAIK not very extensible, although basic darkfield up to around 400x can be accomplished with some fairly easy tinkering.
Note: I'm not an expert on microscopes, but I happen to own a CX31 for home/hobby use.