Technical FAQs MMI CellCut /MMI SmartCut

I want to start the MMI CellTools software but after a split second the pop-up window disappears and the software has not started.

  • The activation Hasp is not connected or is in the wrong place, check and try again.

The overlap of the overview images is not continuous and the image looks strange.

  • The calibration of the 4x objective is not accurate – recalibrate in the CellTools software and try again.

The overview image is oblique.

  • The camera is not in the correct orientation. To correct this undo with the allen wrench the screw holding the camera adapter in position on the microscope frame. Select an object on the screen and move it to the very edge of the screen in the top right hand corner – move the stage to the left with the arrow keys, adjust the position of the camera in small amounts until the object you have selected moves exactly parallel to the edge of the screen, retighten the screw and check once more. Repeat the overview.

The cutting position is not accurate. There is an offset between the drawing and the cutting.

  • The laser position is not correctly set, fire a single shot and reset the laser position.
  • The camera is not in the correct orientation or the objective calibration is not accurate (see above).

The stage cannot be controlled and is not moving.

  • The SM cable is not plugged or not in the correct connector (PC or Controller).

There is no live video image on the screen.

  • The switch knob on the microscope is on position “eyepiece”, switch to camera or 80:20 mode.
  • The camera cable is not connected or defective, check connection or replace. If the image is completely white, the exposure time setting is too high and if the image is completely black the exposure time is too low. Open up the camera window and adjust the exposure time or reset the camera to automatic mode.

I want to move the sample by using the mouse and the stage moves very fast a large distance.

  • The wrong objective is set in the software (ie you have x4 on the microscope and x10 in the software – be careful of this particularly on a manual microscope).
  • The objective calibration is inaccurate, recalibrate in the CellTools software.

The live video image is entirely colored (ie red).

  • A fluorescence filter (e.g. Cy3) is still in position despite working in bright field mode. Select Brightfield mode in the Setup pull down box.
  • A wire in the camera cable is broken.
  • A white balance setting must be redone.
  • The colour temperature of the lamp is too low. Allow the bulb to warm up or replace the bulb as appropriate.

The stage is not moving in the desired direction.

  • X and Y stage cables are inverted.
  • The camera orientation is wrong.
  • Wrong camera settings in the software (under extended Parameters).

I want to start the MMI CellToolssoftware and I get an error message “invalid type conversion”.

  • The mmiCutDataBase is corrupt. Delete it and restart the software. A default DataBase will be copied and used by the software, if the problem persists or you get other error messages contact your local distributor or MMI representative as appropriate.

I can’t cut. I’ve drawn my objects of interest and press on the cut function. The stage moves but my objects are not getting cut at all.

  • The interlock cable is not plugged in or is loose. Adjust and repeat (also check the lights on the laser controller while you do this).
  • The laser is switched off. Do you have the correct lights on the controller unit? If there is a red light then this is most likely the problem.
  • The focus and/or power settings are wrong, try adjusting them while you cut and see the effect. Start first at 100% power and adjust the focus across the full range.
  • If this problem persists contact your local Distributor or MMI representative. They are likely to ask you for your instrument serial number, the veriosn of the software you are using and maybe a photo of yur system (so they know the exact configuration).

I’m cutting my objects of interest but the cutting is not clean. It is very wide and I can see a big laser spot on the video image during the cutting process.

  • The correction collar on the objective is not set to the value 1 (glass thickness). This is only the case for the higher magnification objectives with correction collars on them.
  • The wrong objective is set in the software. (ie you have x4 on the microscope and x10 in the software – be careful of this particularly on a manual microscope).
  • The sample is too wet. Try the sample as appropriate and also try readjusting the cutting speed, focus and power, maybe using lower power and repeating the cut will help.
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