A dissecting microscope is a type of microscope that is designed for low magnification observation of larger specimens or objects that are too thick or opaque to be viewed under a conventional compound microscope. It is also known as a stereo microscope because it provides a three-dimensional view of the specimen, allowing for the examination of the surface details and structure of the sample.
A dissecting microscope consists of two separate optical pathways that provide slightly different angles of observation to the user’s eyes, giving a stereoscopic or 3D image of the specimen. It typically has a zoom lens system that allows for continuous adjustment of magnification from low to high power. The microscope is usually equipped with a light source, which can be adjusted in intensity and direction to provide optimum illumination for the sample. The working distance of a dissecting microscope is typically longer than that of a compound microscope, allowing for more space to manipulate the specimen under examination.