Opticron 8x20 Gallery Scope review

Ultra compact and versatile macro monocular that can focus as close as 30cm, as well as alternatively to infinity

Opticron 8x20 Gallery Scope
(Image: © Gavin Stoker)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Though the model name suggests this one is aimed at appreciators of art, in fact, the Opticron 8x20 Gallery Scope is a pocket-sized device with a periscopic operation that’s suitable for viewing practically any subject. Also described as a macro focus monocular, which also doesn't quite cut it either, as the versatile focus range runs from infinity to as close as 30cm, and vice versa. The latter allows us to magnify small details on artworks or, say, insects, for almost forensic examination – allowing us to see the grain in a photographic print for example. It all adds up to a versatile tool for those who want to observe subjects either very near or very far away, yet want to travel light with it.


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    Ultra-compact proportions aid portability

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    One simple yet flexible viewing device that does it all, for subjects both far away and up close

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    Optional LED illuminated microstand with 3x magnification factor coverts this existing scope into a compact microscope


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    Not waterproof

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    So compact it’d be easy to misplace, as are the detachable protective caps

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Imagine being able to own one of the best monoculars and one of the best microscopes, without having to shell out for two separate devices. 

Wouldn’t it be great if we had a pocket-sized device shorter in length than a tube of sweets that would not only act like a monocular in bringing faraway subjects up close but also function as a magnifying glass for those subjects that were already at hand, allowing us to examine fine detail at an almost forensic level from as close as 30cm / 12-inches away – i.e the length of an old school ruler? 

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Gavin Stoker

Gavin has over 30 years’ experience of writing about photography and television. He is currently the editor of British Photographic Industry News, and previously served as editor of Which Digital Camera and deputy editor of Total Digital Photography

He has also written for a wide range of publications including T3, BBC Focus, Empire, NME, Radio Times, MacWorld, Computer Active, What Digital Camera and the Rough Guide books.

With his wealth of knowledge, Gavin is well placed to recognize great camera deals and recommend the best products in Digital Camera World’s buying guides. He also writes on a number of specialist subjects including binoculars and monoculars, spotting scopes, microscopes, trail cameras, action cameras, body cameras, filters and cameras straps.