Home » $1 and Free, Headline, Tech Crafts

Make a Fifty Cent Macro Lens

19 November 2010 2,830 views 4 Comments

by heather

I love my small web video camera, but it does have its limitations. Sean Lee, a user at Make: Projects wanted to use his little video camera to make how-to videos, but the camera is made to focus on things about a meter away, which didn't work for the small circuits Sean wanted to photograph. Instead of buying a new camera that could do the job, Sean (and his wife!) came up with a neat little hack to adjust his small web video camera's insufficient focus using a supply he found at the dollar store. Can you guess what the supply is? Hint: it's in the picture! Yes, it's a lens from a pair of reading glasses! [how to make a fifty cent macro lens] [via our friends at Craft]

Project Estimate:

  • A pair of reading glasses (2.0 power), $1
  • Tape
  • Your video camera

Total: $.50 (you only need one lens!)

Follow Me on Pinterest

Disclosure: this article may contain affiliate links or other forms of sponsored content. Opinions are 100% the author's. Full disclosure policy.


  • Elisha said:

    This made me laugh. My camera already has a good macro but what would happen if I tried this with it? Hahaha! Maybe I can get a clear picture of the baby snails that recently hatched in my ecosystem-in-a-jar

  • Rebecca of the R&W Gals said:

    I have a larger camera lens but also have this problem. Now I’m racking my brain for a cheap solution like this! Thanks for the inspiration!
    [email protected]

  • Donna said:

    I, too, have a larger camera…I was wondering if a $ store magnifying glass lens would work? I’ll have to try it and see! If it works, it would be awesome!!

  • Anna M. said:

    Seriously, it really works?