Intel Play QX3
by Rick Smith (June 5, 2001)
Digital Microscopes are replacing conventional optical microscopes in industry. They provide great capability to engineers and scientists, but are well outside the reach of most consumers. What if you just want to play with a digital microscope?
Intel has created a great starter digital microscope for $99, appropriately named the Intel Play QX3 Computer Microscope. While this product can be great fun for kids, I feel this microscope has adult potential as well. All images from the microscope appear on your computer screen and can be easily magnified from 10 to 200 times. Most digital cameras lose focus when they are within a foot of an object, but this microscope allows you to easily see the microscopic world.
Being digital, the Intel Play QX3 does more than simply let you look at tiny objects on your computer screen. Using the sophisticated, but easy-to-use CD software package that is included, children (and adults) can store, print and manipulate digital still images from the microscope. The video imaging technology in this microscope can capture real-time video and time lapse movies as well, making the QX3 act as both a digital still and video microscope camera.
The Intel Play QX3 Computer Microscope includes useful microscopy accessories such as prepared slides, sample jars, containment dishes, an eyedropper and plastic tweezers. An activity guide is also included to maximize enjoyment.
Since the Intel QX3 microscope interfaces via the USB port, Windows 98 is required. It is available at toy stores, mass merchants, computer stores and specialty stores. The QX3 microscope is part of Intel's Play line of products that include the Intel Play Computer Sound Morpher and the Intel Play Me2Cam Virtual Game System.
© 2001 Rick Smith All rights reserved.