A good UV transilluminator (electrophoresis) - (Oct/28/2012 )
Hi everyone !
Could you please tell me about your experience in your work with UV transilluminators? I need to buy one for the lab, but I don't know which brand is the more suitable. Which brand should I buy?
I think it would be better if it had an observation chamber.
Any brand should work fine, there isn't much difficulty with most transilluminators. If you need to do a lot of DNA gel extractions, it is worth getting a less damaging long wavelength option on the transilluminator.
A hood is useful for taking pictures and avoiding unnecessary UV exposure, but it isn't absolutely necessary - kodak used to sell a camera and hand held hood that could be shifted on and off the trans.
You might consider a blue light illuminator, rather than UV, which will limit DNA damage.
In my experience, for routine and comfort gel imaging (like udes every week, not once in two months) is much better to look for complete imaging solutions. Those UV transluminators with detachable hood with a common digital camera attached on the top just sucks, really. It's difficult to focus, change expositin times, everyting is controled on computer and there is no live-preview. I had to use it few times when our CCD camera was broken and it was hell.
These things however are not that cheap, but chambers with black-and-white CCD camera have focusing, zoom, exposition control and live preview give much more better images much easier and quicker way.
Also as mentioned, for gel extraction longer wavelength UV option may be beneficial. If you plan to cut the gels under UV look for chambers that allow that (i.e. UV on while doors are open), some may not.
Thank you very much for the help!!!