Types of Magnifiers

Whether you have low vision or just need a bit more magnification, a magnifier can be very handy for performing certain tasks. Choosing the right magnifier, however, can be a challenge in itself. How many types are there and how can you know which one you need?

In this article we'll tell you about some of the most popular kinds of magnifiers. They can differ widely when it comes to usage but, to make it a bit easier, we have put them in two categories: hand-held and hands-free magnifiers. 

Hand-held magnifiers

Hand-held magnifiers are perfect for tasks which don't require both of your hands to perform. They are super convenient, as they can be used quickly and easily, making them great for when you're out and about.

Traditional magnifying glasses are what comes to mind when you think of detectives like Sherlock Holmes or the one a child would use to search for insects in the grass. Modern handheld magnifiers have come a long way, though, and now you can even find versions with a light. They are extremely convenient for usage out of your home. In general they do not offer too big a magnification, but it is enough to perform many tasks.

Same goes for pocket, necklace and folding magnifiers in general. Those types are amazing for small tasks, like reading tiny fonts on documents and packaging. Mobilent LED Illuminated Folding Pocket Magnifier from Eschenbach is among the best solutions when you need to see something up close or to aid low vision, as it is extremely compact and it comes in different ranges of magnification. Thanks to its LED light, it can serve you as well in poorly lit places as it does in bright illuminated ones.

Binoculars and monoculars are among the most popular types of handheld magnifiers that find use outside your home. They are super popular for terrain and wildlife observation activities. While telescopes are much better at the job, stargazing could be done to a degree with binoculars and certain monoculars, being great for beginners. As for wildlife, many bird enthusiasts enjoy observing our feathered friends with them, too. Eschenbach Magno X Binoculars are a great choice in every situation, with a good field of view and 8x magnification.


Hands-free magnifiers

Hands-free magnifiers generally have stands or can be worn like glasses. They allow the performing of tasks which require the use of both hands, such as sewing or knitting, but can also be used for reading or observing photographs comfortably, without having to hold the magnifier and constantly adjust your focus.

Dome and bar magnifiers are one of the best solutions when it comes to visual aids for reading. In general they offer good magnification and a larger field of view, being very handy for older people and people with impaired vision. They require minimal involvement of your hands and some of them have a light. Eschenbach Menas Zoom, for example, is a dome magnifier with adjustable magnification, which reaches up to 3.4x and easily tackles the smaller fonts in books.

Clip-on magnifiers are extremely convenient for model painting and building, and also for reading. Some of them come with interchangeable lenses, allowing you to choose different magnifications for different tasks. They can be clipped onto your prescription spectacles and some of those models can reach over 4x magnification. Coil Monocular Magniclip offers a great field of view and up to 4.75x magnification, making working with electronics a breeze.

Spectacles are a fantastic choice, as well. They can range from standard reading glasses and sunglasses to spectacles for watching TV or performing very intricate tasks. Reading glasses are among the most popular hands-free magnifiers and are a great solution for milder cases of visual impairment and tasks that do not require too much magnification. Remember that they shouldn’t be used as a substitute for your prescription glasses.


These are just a few of the different magnifiers available, as an aid for vision impairment and hobbyists. For a more comprehensive range, make sure to have a look at our store.