AmScope B120C-E1 Siedentopf Binocular Compound Microscope 40X 100X 250X 400X 1000X 2500X LED 1.3MP

AmScope B120C-E1

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A MUST-buy for …

… the needs of a wide variety of people while still being affordable. This microscope is suitable for home and educational uses both for students and teachers, certain types of research, and even for some clinical and laboratory needs. While it is doubtful that this microscope would meet the demanding needs of a large hospital or a dedicated research laboratory, it may well be found in small Vet Offices to look at feces samples, high school biology classes and even the dorm rooms of science or medical students. This binocular microscope is easy enough for most beginners to use, yet offers enough features for more refined and professional use. This microscope is powerful enough to allow the study of bacterial specimens. Features of the AmScope B120C-E1 include:

  • Siedentopf binocular head (~ Henry Siedentopf, a pioneer of microscopy and micro photography)
  • 40X through 2500X magnification
  • 5 widefield magnification settings 40X, 100X, 250X, 400X, 1000X and 2500X
  • Brightfield LED illumination (meaning –  it’s a dark sample on a illuminated background)
  • Professional 30 degree incline
  • 360 degree swiveling siedentopf binocular head
  • Sturdy metal framework with 3D double layer mechanical stage
  • Coaxial coarse and fine focusing
  • Abbe condenser (controls the light prior to entering the objective)
  • Iris Diaphram (controls the diameter of the light)
  • Color filter
  • Single bulb LED light with dimmer
  • 1.3MP camera with user friendly editing and processing software for windows
  • 1.3MP digital imager for both stills and videos
  • Works best with windows 2000, XP, Vista, Windows 7, and 8 along with drivers and software
  • Mac (only drivers, but works with Photo booth – Mac Software)
  • 5 year Warranty
  • CD with instructions

What’s in the Box

The AmScope B120C-E1 Siedentopf binocular compound microscope comes with everything you need except for some slides to test out the microscope. When you open the box containing this microscope you can expect to find the following:

  • Siedentopf binocular microscope head
  • Microscope body frame (with the double layer mechanical stage)

AmScope B120C-E1_stage

  • LED illumination
  • DIN standard objectives 4X, 10X, 40X, 100X

AmScope B120C-E1

  • Pair of widefield 10X eyepieces
  • Pair of widefield 25X eyepieces
  • Blue filter
  • Dust cover for microscope (very helpful, when not often used)
  • Immersion oil (sample)
  • 1.3MP USB 2.0 digital camera
  • 6 foot USB 2.0 cable
  • CD with software, drivers and instructions

Usability and Functionality of this Microscope

One of the most important things most people want to know when purchasing a higher quality microscope for the first time is how easy the microscope is going to be set up and use. Here is a brief look at the usability and functionality of the B120C-E1.

Set Up

While most users don’t feel that the AmScope B120C-E1 is extremely difficult to set up, they do note that the instruction manual that comes with this microscope offers little help in the set up or the use of the microscope. However, there is a code on the receipt for this microscope that you can use to get a more in depth copy of the instructions. You can also contact AmScope and have them give you a link or send you a copy of the instructions.

While most people have little difficulty with using the CD to set up the microscope, a few people do have some difficulty with the CD.

The head has to be connected to the microscope body as the objectives do not come attached to the microscope. Most people have little problem assembly the microscope, but a few find it a bit challenging.

Ease of Use

The AmScope B120C-E1 is a microscope that most people find easy to use. Users find that it easy to set and adjust slides when using this microscope and also find both the coarse and fine focusing makes it easy to bring their specimens into great focus. They feel that this microscope has a good range of magnification.

Users state that viewing samples through the microscope gives a more fine tuned view than viewing samples using the monitor.

They find it easy to take pictures and videos for demonstrations purposes and easy to share the photos and videos with family, friends, students or co-workers.


The AmScope B120C-E1 comes with 1.3 Megapixel digital camera which while decent really isn’t high enough quality to take professional lab photographs. Several users comment on the poor quality of the microscope, but state that you can upgrade the camera recommending you purchase a 3MP camera. Users do state that the software for the camera makes it easy to store and share stills and videos.

Advantages and Disadvantages of the AmScope B120C-E1 Binocular Microscope

The AmScope B120C-E1 has many advantages and a few disadvantages for users. Here is a look at those Advantages and Disadvantages.


There are several Advantages to buying and using the AmScope B120C-E1 microscope. Some of these advantages include:

  • Fairly high quality microscope for an extremely reasonable price.
  • The Microscope is relatively easy to set up
  • Software, especially for Windows is easy to use
  • The microscope has a solid build and is extremely durable
  • The Coarse and Fine focus operates smoothly
  • The 1.3 Camera results in good (not great) images (scope deserves a better camera with 3MP)
  • Can get a more thorough manual from the AmScope company


There are a few disadvantages for some people who purchase the AmScope B120C-E1 including:

  • The instruction manual that comes in the box with the AmScope B120C-E1 does not provide adequate information for beginners to set up and use without getting better information.
  • There is some assembly of the microscope that needs to be completed by the users which may be somewhat difficult to some people.
  • Not every customers gets a working CD which is needed to properly set up the microscope.

Click here to read more pros and cons >>> AmScope B120C-E1 

What the Reviews Say

Users feel that this the AmScope B120C-E1 binocular microscope is excellent for beginners and for home users. The microscope is good quality and durable and easy to use. They really like the clear images they get when they use this microscope and feel the camera is adequate for casual needs. The main complaints regarding this microscope is the difficulty in getting a functional and useful manual and the fact that some of the CDs don’t work properly.

Overall, the vast majority of users find the AmScope B120C-E1 Siedentopf binocular Compound microscope is an excellent choice for a wide variety of uses and users.