Wild M400 brought to digital documentation
The Wild M400 photomacroscope is a physically large microscope, developed in the 1970s. Wild macroscopes were used widely in universities and quality control laboratories. Nowadays there are still macroscopes available on the market. The M400 was designed to make documentations on 35mm film, camera and control interface combined to a photographic unit. The following picture shows the camera tube with the original camera :
A full frame digital camera is recommendable for changing the M400 to digital documentation. The format of the sensor fits to the original 35mm film. Additionally the eyepiece reticle plates show the correct format crop for the picture to be taken. It is essential to re-use the existing projective in the new adaptation, which is screwed out of the camera and screwed into the new adaptation :
Assembled together the adaption can be seen here :
The following parts were used for the adaptation :
T2 lens mount adapter for the appropriate camera (upper left),
T2 thread ring to fix the finetuned position of the camera when parfocality between oculars and eyepieces is set (lower left),
Adaption tube manufactured in POM, outer diameter equal to the outer diameter of the original camera tube, with inner thread matching the original projective and outer T2 thread carrying the T2 lens mount adapter for the camera (upper right),
Cover plate with inner T2 thread to carry the adaption tube with the projective, holding in the correct position in the original photo tube of the M400 (lower right).
Due to the round cover plate a mounted Canon 5D can be used in landscape or portrait mode :
Closing this short article you find two test shots with the shown adaption, showing the overall high quality of the Wild M400 Series with digital technique. The upper image shows an object stage micrometer, taken at the highest magnification of the macroscope objective. The lower image shows a foram shell (Baculogypsina sphaerulata) from Okinawa, Japan.
To adapt a digital fullframe camera to a Wild M400 is not that complex, provided all original parts of the M400 are available. Especially the projective of the original analogue camera is essential for a correct adaptation. The overall quality of the resulting images is very good, so the M400 lives on in a digital era.