Robert Murray Stamp Shop, Edinburgh
Magnifying Glasses

Although we are principally a shop dealing with stamps, postcards, coins, banknotes, and similar material, we do have certain other lines of stock. One popular line is these magnifying glasses. See our shop information page for opening hours and other information.

Correcting a common mistake.
It is common for people to come in saying they want the strongest magnifier available, but in fact that's often not what they need.
Due to the laws of physics, the stronger the magnification, the smaller the focal length. Therefore with a high magnification the distance from eye to lens, and from lens to subject, is much smaller, and it is more difficult to keep focus.
Also, you'll find that as glasses get stronger, the diameter of the lens gets smaller. So if you got one of our strongest magnifiers in order to help reading a newspaper, you would end up with the paper right up in front of your face, and only able to read a couple of characters at a time.

For general purposes, what you need is the weakest magnifier you can manage with. Therefore, don't just buy an 8x - try a 2x, and if that doesn't work for you, try a 3x, and so on. You'll find working with a 5x is usually easier that with a 10x.

Two other things are worth having;
{a} good light is as helpful as an extra degree of magnification,
{b} patience - we find people often try a magnifier, give it one or two seconds, and declare it to be no use for them. If they would just give it a bit longer, the eye can sometimes adjust.

In Our Shop
You are welcome to come and try different magnifiers. We are not qualified opticians, but over the years have helped hundreds of people with visual problems. If you want, bring an example of the type of thing you'd be looking at, and if you'd normally wear spectacles please wear them.

As a visual aid, it is difficult to buy a magnifier for someone else, or to buy mail order without trying it out. Note that magnifiers are not normally returnable, unless there is a production fault.

We keep a wide range of different magnifiers. People assume that these are aimed at stamp collectors. While we do sell many magnifiers to collectors, we sell more to non-collectors for all sorts of purposes (map-reading, general help with reading books and newspapers, checking hallmarks, modelmaking, fishing fly tying, inspecting fibres, and so on - it makes life interesting).

Various different types of magnifier. Prices are indicative only, as our stocks vary - at the time of writing the prices quoted are an honest guide.

Hand-Held. Approx. 4 to 13.
Still the most popular type, the "Sherlock Holmes" style is a good general purpose magnifier. The strength is generally at the lower end of the range (approx. 1.75x to 2.5x) but it is in most cases the easiest type to use. Diameter of lens approx. 50mm to 125mm.

Adjustable Stand. Approx.21 to 31 (some on offer below these prices).
Like the hand-held type, but with a heavy base, and a flexible arm in place of the handle. Diameter of lens c.75mm to 115mm.

Illuminated Magnifiers. Approx.8.50 to 13.50.
Handy for carrying around, with a small integral light (batteries not included). Smaller lenses but a bit stronger (5x to 10x)

Watchmakers' Eyeglasses. Approx.6 to 21.
A handy accessory for detailed work where you need both hands free. Needs a bit of practice to master being able to hold it in your eye. Magnifications 4x to 20x.

High Power Magnifiers. Approx.10 to 32.
These are small fold-away glasses, with magnifications from 8x to 20x. Some have two different lenses of different strengths. Lenses from 12mm to 20mm diameter. A couple in the range are achromatic.

Linen Testers ("web glass"). Approx.14 to 18.
This type folds to form its own stand, about 6x magnification, with measuring scale on the base.

And there's more than just these !

 Last updated Saturday 21 December 2013.
Copyright Robert Murray 2013. Errors and ommissions excepted.
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Robert Murray Stamp Shop
5 & 6 Inverleith Gardens
Scotland EH3 5PU
Tel. 0131 552 1220 or 0131 478 7021
How to Order
Mail Orders are accepted by post, telephone, or email. We accept payments by cash, cheque, debit card, Visa/MasterCard, and some foreign currencies.
Basically, we charge [the advertised price of the goods] plus [the actual price of postage] plus [1 per order handling charge]. 
Full details can be seen at our How to Order page.
Our Retail Shop  is our principal method of business, and is open four days each week Customers are always, of course, welcome.
We carry very wide stocks of the whole world - much, much more than is listed on our website.
All the world's philatelic bureaux
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