What Is The Best Magnification For A Watch Loupe?

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A watch loupe is an essential watch accessory that all watch enthusiasts and collectors must have just like the watch winder boxes. This small device helps you inspect your watch up-close to look for minor details in order to check for issues or just to admire the craftsmanship. They come with different magnification power, hence people always ask what is the best magnification for a watch loupe? If you too have this question then don’t worry as I will try to answer it in this article. So keep reading!

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What Is The Best Magnification For A Watch Loupe?

best magnification for watch loupe

If I have to answer it in one line then I will say that it depends on your area of application that which magnification for a watch loupe is the best. For example, if you want a watchmaker’s loupe just for admiring the beauty of the watch or for general work then 4x and 5x magnification is good enough. However, if you want to inspect minor details like the working of the watch movement or you want to lubricate the watch escapement then a 10x magnification is more than sufficient.

Watch loupes over 10x magnification like 20x, 30x, and 40x are used by professional watchmakers for pivot inspection and other microscopic level details.

So, if you are a watch enthusiast or collector a 4x, 5x, and 10x is the best watch magnification for you. Watch loupes with these magnifications will help you inspect a watch when buying a pre-owned watch or when checking a Rolex for its authenticity. You will rarely need a magnification above that in your daily lives. As anyhow you go to a professional watchmaker for the repair and maintenance of your watch.

Watch Magnification


Who Should Use It

4X & 5X

General work and for admiring the craftsmenship

Watch collector and enthusiasts


Detailed inspection

Watch collector and enthusiasts and proffesional watchmakers

20 X & 30 X

Highly detailed inspection like Pivot inspection

Professional watch makers

40 X & Above

Microscopic inspection

Jewellers and Gemologist

Does More Magnification Mean Better Inspection?

In theory, more magnification means you can look at the watch more closely. However, practically, the more the magnification the shallow is the depth of focus. Meaning that you have to keep the watch really close to your eyes which makes it hard to work on it. So, if you are looking for a watch loupe, anything above 10x magnification is kind of useless.

Types Of Watch Loupes?

Now since we know which magnification is best for watch loupes, let’s find out how many different types of watch loupes are there.

1. Watch Eye Loupes

watch eye loupe

The watch eye loupes come in a cylindrical shape. On one end it has an aperture that fits on your eyes and on the other end it has a lens for magnification. The lens is made from either glass or plastic. The cheaper watch loupes come with a plastic lens, while the expensive one comes with glass. Also, the body of the loupe is made from different materials like wood, aluminum, plastic, etc. These are the most common types of watch loupes you would find in the market.

The watch eye loupe I recommend: Yosso Watchmaker Loupe

2. Handheld Watch Loupes

handheld watch loupe

The handheld watch loupes as the name suggest come with a handle. These are not used by watchmakers as they cannot repair the watch by holding the magnifier in one hand. However, if you are buying one to just observe the beauty of your magnificent timepiece then a handheld magnifier loupe provides more convenience.

The handheld watch loupe I recommend: OXMUL Loupe Magnifier

3. Eyeglass Watch Loupes

eyeglass watch loupes

Some people cannot see anything without their glasses and for people like them, there are watch eyeglass loupes like these that attach to their spectacles and help them examine their watch clearly.

The eyeglass watch loupes I recommend: Double Loopy Eye Loupe for Glasses

4. Watch Loupes With LED Lights

watch loupe with led

The high magnification watch loupes are needed to be held really close to the watch, hence they block the light and it is sometimes hard to see anything. Therefore some high magnification watch loupes with 30x, 40x, and 60x magnifications come with an LED light that makes it easy to inspect the watch even if you hold it really close.

The watch loupe with LED Light I recommended: JARLINK 30X 60X  Eye Loupe 

How To Use A Watch Loupe?

A watch loupe based on its design and magnification needs to be used differently. For example, if you are using a watch eye loupe then it needs to be put on your one eye and the watch needs to be held at a certain distance from the loupe. The higher the magnification the close you need to hold the watch because the focal length is inversely proportional to magnification.


So that is all for this article, I hope you have learned a lot about watch loupes and why they are necessary for watch maintenance. Also, if you are looking for the best magnification for watch loupes then you need to keep in mind that more magnification does not mean better inspection. You have to choose the magnification of the watch loupe according to your area of use.

In most cases watch loupes up to 10x magnification are more than sufficient, but if you want more magnification, don’t go above 30x, it will be useless for you.


How Do I Choose A Watch Loupe?

The most important thing to look for while choosing a watch loupe is its magnification. The higher the magnification the closer you can see.

Is 10x Magnification Enough?

It's more than enough for watch enthusiasts and collectors to admire and maintain their watch.

What Is The Difference Between 5X VS 10X Magnification?

The difference is twice as much. With 10x magnification you can see a watch up-close two times than that of 5x magnification.

Tom Nielson

Tom's love for watches started when his grandfather gifted him his Rolex watch when he turned 18! Being a teenager it was a big deal for him. Later when he got his first job he bought Fossil Palm Pilot back in 2003 which was a smartwatch. Since then smartwatches have come a long way and so is Tom's love for them. His experience with watches inspired him to start Wearholic and share his knowledge of wearables including watches, smartwatches, smart glasses, & smart clothing.

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