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FAQs

DeltaRAM X™ FAQs

What kind of Microscopes can I use with the DRX?
The DRX can be used with any standard Fluorescence microscope from Zeiss, Leica, Olympus,Nikon or Motic.

What ports can I use the DRX on to illuminate my microscope?
PTI provides adaptors for both EPI and Direct port on the microscope. Two varieties are available. One for coupling to an existing EPI fluorescence light train, thus retrofitting the existing Mercury Lamp housing and a second type for Microscopes with NO EPI- fluorescence light train installed.

What wavelength region can I cover with the Standard DRX?
The DRX covers any wavelength from 250 nm to 650 nm in increments of 0.5 nm step sizes. If your application requires different wavelengths we can also accommodate that, please contact your local representative for details.

What is the difference between the DRX and a standard scanning mono?
The optical principles of light diffraction are the same however the function of how the wavelengths shift is the main difference. Where traditional mono's use a worm drive to change the wavelengths and DRX uses a galvanometer for high speed wavelength selection.

How does the galvanometer work?
The galvanometer allows the DRX to directly drive a flat mirror at high speeds, which changes the angle of incident at which the light is directed towards the grating. This allows the wavelengths to change at high speeds.

So how fast is the DRX vs. a standard scanning mono?
With the following parameters being the same for both systems:

  • Start at 250 nm and go to 450 nm in 1 nm steps and then back to 250 nm
  • A standard mono would take 3.5 sec
  • The DRX would take 0.2 sec

How many wavelengths can I really do in a second?
You can drive the DRX up to as many as 250 ratios' per second.

Why would I choose a tunable system over a filter wheel based system?
The simple fact is cost of ownership and flexibility. With a filter based system you only have the choice of up to 10 fixed wavelengths at a set band pass a reflective based system like the DRX allows the user to set any center wavelength at any band pass to optimize the current application as well as the future application. The cost of ownership is the fact that the DRX offers the customer a catalog of unlimited filter wavelengths and bandwidths. (Saving thousands of dollars)

Why do other companies offer a more powerful light source?
The amount of light gathered by the system is dependent on the spot size of the focused beam. If the spot size is greater than the entrance slit width, it is lost light. The ability to F match the light source to the diffraction portion of the system is the key to throughput. PTI uses a reflector to capture the light, maximize light collection and F match to the DRX. In fact the DRX's 75 watt source is more powerful than a 150 watt systems on the market.

What do the Bi-lateral Slits do for my applications?
Unlike filters, which have a set bandwidth, the DRX can adapt to your specific application needs with a continuous adjustment from 0 to 24 nm. This feature is key in utilizing the full dynamic range of ratiometric dyes.

How is the light delivered from the DRX to my microscope?
The light is collected from the DRX via a Liquid Light guide for maximum light delivery to the microscope.

Why would I use a Liquid light guide and not a fiber optic cable?
The DRX comes standard with a Liquid light guide due to the fact it delivers more than 30% more light than a fiber optic cable. A LLG is also more flexible than a fiber optic, where fibers can break if bent to far, a LLG is much more flexible with out compromising the throughput.

How long does the Lamp last?
Our standard lamp 1000 hours or more.

Can I replace the lamp myself?
Yes, PTI has a written manual and a movie on our web site that takes you step by step through the installation and alignment o the lamp.

Can I use the DRX to illuminate two microscopes?
Yes, you can have multiple microscope adaptors for the DRX allowing the DRX to be used for multiple microscopes in your lab.

Why does the DRX come with an automatic shutter?
The automatic shutter prevents photo bleaching, by automatically closing between experiments.

Why does the DRX come with different modes of operation?
(This feature allows for maximum application flexibility and optimization.)

  • Hopping Mode
    Hopping mode allows for the measurement of multiple dyes that are not in sequence such as 325 nm and 615 nm and then 455 nm and 525 nm in a user defined routine.
  • Full Scan Mode
    Scan mode example: allows the user to conduct excitation profile scans to insure the sample has been loaded/washed properly by it excitation profile.
  • Quick Scan Mode
    Allows the user to set different wavelengths in sequence at a rapid pace.

What software can I use with the DRX?
The DRX comes standard with a Labview vi that will allow full control of the DRX. (you do not need a version of Labview to run the DRX vi). The DRX can also be controlled by the following software packages:

  • PTI's FeliX32™
  • PTI’s Felix GX
  • PTI's ImageMaster™
  • PTI’s EasyRatioPro systems
  • MediaCy
  • QED Invivo
  • UIC’s MetaMorph and MetaFluor
  • uManager
  • Nikon Elements
  • And many more, check with your rep to find out all the options

Does the DRX come with its own power supply?
YES, the DRX comes with it own power supply for both the DRX and lamp.

How do I focus the light into the system?
With every DRX system PTI provides a manual illustrating the focus process.

What kind of electronics do I need to run the DRX?
The DRX comes with it's own built in electronic. a simple USB interface standard or optional PCI interface for High Speed Operation.

Is the DRX easy to install?
YES, PTI supplies a easy to use manual to illustrate the ease of use and set up.

What kind of computer can I use with the DRX?
The DRX interfaces with the computer via USB therefore it does not matter what kind of PC or Notebook that is used.

Can I use the DRX with a MAC?
Yes depending on the software you chose to use. Check with your local rep for more details.

How do I know that the correct wavelength is being emitted from the DRX?
Every DRX is tested through out the wavelength region to verify every wavelength. Unlike a filter based system you have the flexibility to calibrate the DRX, depending on you detection method PTI has a verity of deferent calibration checks for you conduct at any time.

 

Liquid Light Guide FAQs

Why would I use a Liquid light guide and not a fiber optic cable?
The DRX comes standard with a Liquid light guide due to the fact it delivers more than 30% more light than a fiber optic cable. A LLG is also more flexible than a fiber optic, where fibers can break if bent to far, a LLG is much more flexible with out compromising the throughput.

How long is the Liquid Light Guide?
The LLG comes standard with a 1-meter length. However if you need to illuminate multiple scopes in your lab we do offer longer LLG's.

 

Lamp FAQs

How long does the Lamp last?
Our standard lamp 1000 hours or more.

Can I replace the lamp myself?
Yes, PTI has a written manual and a movie on our web site that takes you step by step through the installation and alignment o the lamp.

Does the Heat from the Lamp harm the reflector?
No, unlike other reflectors on the market PTI only uses high threshold single piece of aluminum manufactured via diamond etching. This allows the reflector to be extremely heat resistant.

Is the Lamp Ozone free?
Yes, the lamp comes standard with an Ozone free lamp so there is no need for a hood over the system in your lab.

 

Set-up and compatibility FAQ's

How do I focus the light into the system?
With every DRX system PTI provides both a manual and a movie illustrating the focus process.

What kind of computer can I use with the ERP?
PTI supplies a workstation with every ERP system.

 

Warp Drive Device FAQs

What is the Warp Drive?
The Warp Drive is a human interface device that allows the user to control all aspects of the application without relying on the software. A user can change all parameters of the application without ever having to move from the microscopes eyepiece. It allows multiple parameters to be change simultaneously and opposed to a mouse, offering a single parameter at a time. This vastly speeds up workflow in the lab and allows more experiments to be done.

If I do not have the experiment parameters in the software how do I know what my set up was?
The Warp Drive is linked to the software allowing all of the experiment set up to be changed in the software through the warp drive.

What if I change the experiment parameters in the software, how will the Warp Drive know where to start from?
The Warp Drive is also tied directly to the software. For example if you change the integration time on a channel the fader bar will move in sync with the software without you having to move it.

How many different Ratio channels can the Warp Drive control at one time?
The Warp Drive can control up to 16 independent wavelength or channels.

Can I save my Warp Drive parameters from one day to the next to repeat the same experiment?
Yes the ERP software allows the user to save as many applications as the user defines, it will automatically set up the warp drive controller.

 

Camera FAQs

What does binning do to my experiment?
Binning allows the camera to integrate shorter times however at the sacrifice of spatial resolution.

What kind of binning is typical?
It is all-dependent on the light levels and the camera you are using. Usually binary values are supported ie. 1x1, 2x2,4x4, 8x8

I have an existing camera can I use it with the ERP software?
Depends, the ERP software supports many different cameras. Contact PTI to determine if your camera make and model is supported.

Does the ERP software support the old Photometrics camera?
Yes, any Photometrics cameras that use PVCam.

Can I process images taken with my old PTI ImageMaster™ software?
No, ERP cannot import old ImageMaster Image data files. Please use ImageMaster 5 to import older PTIIMG data files for post processing.

Can I use other illuminators such as a Shutter DG 4 with the ERP software?
No, the ERP software only supports PTI DeltaRAMs and PTI mono's.

 

Software FAQs

Does ERP software come with application setup in it?
Yes, PTI supplies specific application set-up from the factory, such as Fura2, BCECF,SBFI, GFP, FLUO4, DAPI, FITC, CY5 and many others.

I really like the ERP software but I do not want the Warp drive, do I have to buy it with my PTI system?
No, the ERP software allows you to work with or with out the warp drive interface. The Warp Drive can be backed out of a system to reduce system cost.

If I have the ERP software without the warp drive interface, how hard is it to upgrade in the future?
It is easy to install, in fact it only takes a couple of minutes to set it up.

Can the ERP software automatically set the exposure time of my 2 Ratio channels for me?
Yes, in each defined user channel there is an exposure fader that will set the integration channel of the camera for you.

How many Regions of interest can I plot at a single time?
As many as you want. In fact, one of the most powerful features of the ERP software is that it allows the user to define what ROI's to make the derived data from.

Will the software allow me to process the data of two ROI's with two different forms of derived data?
Yes, the ERP software allows the user to create as many as 15 derived data processes simultaneously.

What other formats can I save the data from ERP's in?
ERP software allows the user to export data in many different formats that include: BMP, JPEG, TIFF, PNG,AVI.

What formats of data can I import into ERP software?
ERP generates it's own proprietary pixel stream format from the CCD camera to hard disk. You cannot import image data into ERP.

Can I use my existing PTI hardware with ERP software and warp drive?
Yes the Warp drive and ERP software is able to work with your existing PTI hardware.Upgrades are available for most PTI Imagemaster systems (see you sales rep for all compatibility details).

 

 
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