Choosing a loupe is very crucial for a watchmaker or a collector. If you haven’t read my guide yet on how to choose a loupe, you can do so here.
Now that we have a basic understanding of what makes a good loupe, we can start with the Loupe System Review. The creator explained on his website what’s the inspiration in starting the company. In summary, it’s basically to create a loupe that’s free from the distortions, abberations and improved image quality.
You may have a few questions now. Is the Loupe System worth it and is the Loupe System worth the hype?
Pricing and difference
There are two models of the loupe and each divided further into magnification. Moreover, there has also been a price increase from January 2020. The models are as follows:
- Black Silicon Rubber –
- Black Silicon Rubber with Ring Light (Factory Installed) –
Each models have a 3x, 6x and 10x magnification and all in similar pricing. I previously inquired before about discounts, but there’s no plans for that to maintain the low pricing.
I asked the creator what would best for me and he explained the difference of each.
- 3x – focusing distance of 7cm and will show the full watch including the lugs and part of the strap and bracelet.
- 6x – focusing distance of 4.5cm and will show the whole dial or movement at once.
- 10x – focusing distance of 2cm and will show details at very high resolution.
I decided to purchase the 6x and also purchased the iPhone 8+ mount to assist with phone photography. It’s quite expensive for a mount, but I believe it’s worth it.
The packaging arrived in a branded box. That means if you’re trying to keep it low with the purchase, it might not work.
The loupe is kept inside a Loupe System hard case. An extra set of foam was included where you can turn the hard case into a watch case. The iPhone accessory was also just stored with it.
Inside the hard case is the loupe enclosed in another case. Along side is an extra eye cup for eye glass wearers, a microfibre cloth and a soft pouch as well.
Both ends of the loupe are made of rubber which is an advantage already compared to your other loupes. This will ensure that in any circumstance the loupe touches the watch, it won’t leave a scratch on it. You also get an extra eye cup which I believe are for eye glass wearers. That’s a nice touch to cater for every type of user.
Another obvious difference is the wider field of view you get and how bright it is. Compared to a single lens loupe, you get a slightly wider field of view. What seems dim in a normal loupe is definitely brighter when viewed on the Loupe System on the same amount of light.
Next, the loupe does feel solid. Compared to your cheap plastic ones, these ones are heavy and just a pleasure to use. The loupe feels balanced across all sides making it easier to handle.
The most important factor is the quality of image you’re seeing and it does live up to its name. As it’s hard to show what I meant without seeing results, I have attached photos taken using the loupe and the iPhone. I’ll let the result speak for itself.
Even with all these great feedback, the Loupe System is far from perfect. Upon receiving the loupe and using it for a few days, what I noticed is that there are speck of dust. These are not dust outside, but inside the lens. Phography is always an analogy I use with lenses. Dust inside the lens can affect how light refracts and affect image quality in a way. How much it affects vary on the amount of dust.
I haven’t gotten a chance to get back to the owner, but my only negative comment thus far is quality check.
Update Dec 11, 2019 – The owner has reached out to me regarding the dust. He explained that this could have been caused by air depressurisation and repressurisation when shipping by air. In addition, there can be cases where sealing on optical barrel is not always perfect. The two combined can cause dust to get into the optics during shipment. He mentioned that when this occurrence occurs, optics can be replaced. He has offered a replacement for my loupe which I gladly accepted. Will update after the holidays.
Update February 1, 2020 – The new replacement loupe has arrived and it’s perfect. Kudos to the owner for the quick resolution. I have sent the replacement back now through Australian Post. Can’t wait to take more macro pictures with the new loupe.
Is the Loupe System worth it? Yes I believe so. If you’re a watch collector or a frequent visitor to conventions or watch shops, this is a must have. It is expensive, but there’s no other alternative that can deliver this performance.
Is the Loupe System worth the hype? To an extent yes. This is the best loupe in the market and nothing can come close yet.
Overall, this is the best loupe I’ve ever used and might just the last one I’ll use in a long time.
I would rate this purchase as an 8.5 / 10.
Update February 1, 2020: Due to the excellent customer service I have received, I will now improve my rating to 9.5/10. You can buy the Loupe System from his website here.