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Who are the key players of the two photon market? Part I.
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Who are the key players of the two photon market? Part I.

There are many manufacturers out-there with multiple variations and numerous options. You do not need to hunter them, here we give a summary, a list of established companies with a great reputation. Their flagship products are also highlighted, and the main strengths of the products are briefly summarized.


The first page of the “two-photon story” was written in 1931 , when Maria Goepper Mayer first described it. The theory was proven and then applied in many areas of science. The next big chapter started in 1990 when two-photon absorption was combined with laser scanning microscopy. The original patent belonged to Winfried Denk and James Strickler from the Watt Wetmore Webb lab at Cornell University. In 2009 this patent expired; subsequently more and more companies entered the field.  

The big companies have departments which are dedicated to microscopy and multiphoton microscopy and it is difficult to determine the number of employees in each department or the actual service and sales locations which manage customer requests in multiphoton systems. Following is a list of companies providing solutions for researchers in this field and brief descriptions of their high-end products. Text in quotes is taken directly from each company’s promotional materials.


Leica-Microsystems  ( 1,000+ employees )

“Leica Microsystems has seven major plants and product development sites around the world. The company is represented in over 100 countries, has sales and service organizations in 20 countries, and an international network of distribution partners. Its headquarters are located in Wetzlar, Germany”. (map)


Top product: SP8 DIVE

“SP8 DIVE offers you unlimited flexibility and enables you to develop new multicolor deep in vivo experiments. Spectral freedom results from the patent-pending, groundbreaking 4Tune technology for non-descanned detection. 4Tune detection allows you to adapt to the full emission and to separate strongly overlapping spectra.”


Zeiss  ( 1,000+ employees )

“ZEISS is active globally in almost 50 countries with around 60 sales and service companies, 30 production sites and 25 development sites. The company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany.” (map)


Top product: LSM 780

Zeiss does not focus specifically on the multiphoton microscope. Its strength comes from a combined system with Zeiss Airyscan 2 confocal system.


Nikon ( 1,000+ employees )

Nikon Instruments is represented globally. If there is no sales and service organization locally, there is certainly a local distributor for researchers in a given county or region. The company is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. (map)


Top product: A1R MP HD

“The A1R MP+ multiphoton confocal microscopes provide faster and sharper imaging from deeper within living organisms, extending the boundaries of traditional research techniques in biological sciences.”


Olympus  ( 1000+ employees )

Olympus is represented globally. If there is no sales and service organization locally, there is certainly a local distributor for researchers in a given county or region.  The company is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. (map)


Top product: FVMPE-RS

The most unique feature of the Olympus multiphoton product line next to the high quality of imaging is that the frame can be inverted. It is quite rare from other providers.


Bruker ( 1000+ employees ) (Bruker acquired Prairie)

The company is represented in over 90 locations.  There are also distributor sites. In this specific multiphoton market Bruker has field engineers in each region to promptly cover any issues. The company is headquartered in the United States of America. Multiphoton manufacturing is located in Madison, WI, United States. (map)


Top product: Ultima ( 2pPlus, In Vitro, Investigator )

The Ultima product line provides high-quality imaging and photostimulation options. Bruker systems have large FOV  ( 1+mm and tiling options )  and well developed SLM module optional. Microscopes from Bruker provide the same level of quality year after year.


Thorlabs ( 1000+ employees)  

Outside its multiple locations in the United States, the company has offices in Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden, and the United Kingdom ( with red on the map). It sells approximately 20,000 different products. The company is headquartered in Newton, New Jersey, United States.


Top products: 1) RAMscope 2) Bergamo II 3) Custom built scope for monkey studies

1)      Subcellular-Level Resolution over a Ø5 mm Field of View

2)      The Bergamo provides optional use of: SLM , Bessel beam volume imaging. Fast wavelength switching (4000 nm/s ) by the Thorlabs Tiberius laser, large working space with fully rotatable microscope.


Sutter ( 100+ employees )

The company is well represented with many distributor partners. ( with blue on the map )The company is headquartered in Novato, California, United States.


Top product: MOM

“Many highly regarded imaging laboratories around the world use the Sutter MOM and we constantly work with our customers to adapt the design for their changing needs.” Sutter’s list prices are available on the website; it can help to design the budgets for a given experiment. Sutter scopes are affordable options for smaller labs with the need of quality and flexible imaging systems.


Femtonics ( 50+ employees )

The company is well represented in Europe and has a wide distribution network for the rest of the world.  (with light blue on the map)  The company is headquartered in Budapest, Hungary.


Top product: 3DATLAS

ATLAS is an acousto-optic scanner-based microscope. It provides real 3D scanning, random access scanning, 40 fps on 512x512, and kHz scanning speed on freely selected ROIs. AOD based quasi-simultaneous photostimulation are its major advantages compared to conventional mirror based microscopes.


Scientifica ( 50+ employee ) ( owned by Judges Scientific )

At the beginning of 2016 Scientifica opened an office in the United States, its first office outside of the UK. They also have a number of selected local distributors in countries around the world. ( see the map ) The company is headquartered in Uckfield, United Kingdom.


Top product: Hyperscope

The Hyperscope is one of the most modular scopes on the market and can have two identical lightpaths for imaging and photostimulation. It uses relay lenses which enables having comparable resolution across the field of view. Scientifica systems come with outstanding customer service.


LaVision Biotec ( 50+ employees ) ( owned by Miltenyi Biotec )

“LaVision BioTec is a leading global specialist for advanced lightsheet and multiphoton microscopy solutions for life science applications.” ( with purple on the map ) The company is headquartered in Bielefeld, Germany.


Top product: TriM Scope II

LaVision builds high-end custom microscopes for many different applications, even combined such as SRS/CARS. They also build inverted multiphoton systems. They can implement adaptive optics, multiplexing, and even Endomicroscope.


3i (Intelligent Imaging Innovations) ( 40+ employees )

“3i designs and manufactures technologies for living cell, live cell, and intravital fluorescence microscopy including digital holography, spinning disk confocal, multi-photon and lightsheet”. (with black on the map) The company is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, United States.


Top product: VIVO Multiphoton

 3i builds high-end special microscopes. The design can be upright or inverted. There is a software-controlled beam expander which adjusts beam diameter to fill variable objective back aperture sizes. 3i was a  pioneer in computer generated holography / SLM.  SlideBook algorithms track the sample in X, Y and Z to maintain focus and alignment.


NeuroLabware (5+ employees )

Neurolabware was started in 2011. It is the success story of Joshua Trachtenberg’s lab. ( see the map)The company is headquartered in Los Angeles, California, United States.


Top product: Mesoscope

NeuroLabware specializes in in-vivo imaging. As they experienced and saw the need for bigger-scale questions they came up with a mesoscale solution. Their technical experts can set up a system with an SLM module


The next blog will be dedicated to emerging multiphoton companies who are building up their own brands and providing different and custom solutions for research all around the world...


Do you plan to purchase a multiphoton microscope? Request only one quote from us, and get offer from all these companies !

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