Bioimaging Unit

Leica SP8 (DLS)

Leica SP8 DLS

Modalities: invert, confocal, live cell, light sheet


The SP8 is a point scanning confocal microscope based around a fully motorised, inverted DMi8 body with hardware-enabled focus correction.

The SP8 is a point scanning confocal microscope based around a fully motorised, inverted DMi8 body with hardware-enabled focus correction. The system has two photomultipliers and two HyD detectors for fluorescence imaging and one for transmitted light detection.

The HyD detectors are more sensitive than conventional PMTs, allowing imaging of very weak fluorescence, and can also be used in photon counting mode, providing truly quantitative imaging. Incorporated into the confocal scan-head are both resonant (fast scanning) and non-resonant (conventional scanning) scanning mirrors. This allows experimenters to have the option of imaging in high resolution (up to 8192 x 8192 pixels) or at high speed (290fps at 512 x 16 pixels). Resonant scanning mode has added benefits; for live-cell experiments, photo-sensitive specimens remain alive for longer and fluorophore bleaching is significantly reduced.

The system will also perform regular 2D, 3D and 4D imaging.

The microscope is fully-enclosed in a heated environmental chamber and has the ability to set and maintain temperature and CO2.

For larger specimens, the confocal can be utilised as a Digital Light Sheet system (DLS), allowing very fast multicolour z stack imaging through samples embedding in aqueous medium, ideal for fly and fish embryo or organoid imaging studies.

Imaging Modes:

  • 2D (xy) or 3D (xyz),
  • multichannel with timelapse,
  • tiling,
  • multiple locations,
  • ROI scanning allowing FRAP and FRET.


Here you can find the specification for this microscope.





Other modes



2.5 0.07   excitation objective Air
10 0.3   emission objective Water
25 0.95   emission objective Water

For Confocal

5 0.15     Air
10 0.4     Air
20 0.75 0.17 DIC Air
40 0.55 0.17   Water
40 0.85 0.17   Air
40 1.3 0.17   Oil
63 1.4 0.17   Oil



















Filter (epi)


Example fluorescence




Part number

Leica DAPI DAPI, Hoechst 340-380 400 420-(LP)  
Leica FITC GFP, FITC, AF488 450-490 510 515 (LP)  
Leica RHOD mCherry, AF594 541-551 580 565-605  






Lasers Lines

  • Diode 405nm, solid state 488nm, 552nm, 638nm


  • 2 x HyD (hybrid detectors) for fluorescence or photon counting
  • 2 x PMT for fluorescence
  • 1x PMT for transmission


Bioimaging Unit, Room M2.154, William Leech Building, Medical School

Newcastle University
William Leech Building
Medical School
Framlington Place 
Newcastle upon Tyne

Enter your postcode or address to find directions


Find out how to book this microscope.

Booking information

  • The minimal booking time for this system is 30 minutes. 
  • Time increments of 15 minutes are permitted. 
  • Bookings can be cancelled with no charge up to an hour before scheduled use.