A Guide to choosing the right Cryostat for Your Lab

When selecting the right cryostat for your lab, understanding the capabilities and features of each model is key to ensuring it meets your specific research or clinical needs. Below is a guide featuring several Leica cryostat models available from Midwest Lab Equipment, highlighting their unique characteristics and suitability for different laboratory environments.


Overview of Leica Cryostats 

Listed below by market price which reflects the configuration of the cryostat, performance, and latest technology implemented. 


Leica CM1800

As a robust model, the CM1800 is known for its durability and reliability. This model is suitable for laboratories that require precision with a more budget-conscious approach. It offers basic features necessary for routine sectioning with reliable cooling performance, making it ideal for educational settings or small labs starting to incorporate cryosectioning into their workflows​​.


Leica CM1510S

A cost-effective option, the CM1510S is designed primarily for routine histology and dermatology applications, such as Mohs surgery. Its affordability and solid performance make it suitable for labs that need dependable sectioning quality without the extensive features of more advanced models​​.


Leica CM1850

The CM1850 focuses on fast and safe sectioning, enhanced by ergonomic features and rapid specimen freezing capabilities. It’s tailored for labs that require quick turnaround without compromising on section quality, particularly useful in busy clinical environments​.

An actively cooled freezing shelf allows extremely fast specimen freezing down to –60 °C with the Peltier unit. Manual defrosting prevents icing of the freezing shelf ensuring that it is always ready. Perfect for Mohs dermatology applications.


Leica CM1520

Similar to CM1850 without the Peltier element. As a robust model, the CM1520 is known for its durability and reliability, making it a preferred choice for clinical pathology and routine histology where consistent performance is crucial. It combines user-friendly operation with effective cooling technology​. High-quality sections need a skilled operator, and a precise microtome. The Leica CM1520 delivers High precision microtome with stepper motor feed-in, Accurate specimen orientation with zero-position centering , Universal blade holder with ultimate stability.

Leica CM1860

The Leica CM1860 cryostat is an upgrade of CM1850 and CM1520 with a upgraded encapsulated microtome holding stepper micromotor that advances set microns extremely accurately. Similar to the CM1850, this particular cryostat is intended for cutting frozen sections of standard and non-standard materials and is designed to rapidly freeze material in a temperature controlled environment. An upgrade to the CM1850, and CM1520  includes advanced safety features like automatic blade retraction and an improved cooling system. It’s designed for labs that prioritise both user safety and high-quality sectioning in their tissue analysis​.


Leica CM1950

The CM1950 is designed for high-throughput labs. Depending on your specific requirements, the Leica CM1950 cryostat can be ordered with a variety of options. High end configuration is with a second compressor for specimen head cooling to -50C ensuring critical temperature required for special samples. Its advanced refrigeration technology ensures precise temperature control, suitable for sophisticated diagnostic applications​​.


Leica CM3050S

This model is the top-tier choice for a broad range of research applications, from basic research to demanding scientific tasks. It offers unparalleled precision, safety, and ergonomics, with features like: Control of the specimen temperature via additional specimen cooling for specimen microtome head to -50C, Three modes of motorised sectioning using foot pedal where technicians can concentrate on delicate sections using both hands in a cooled cabinet . The Leica CM3050S cryostat provides the most important settings such as cutting speed range, cryo chamber and specimen temperature, defrost time and duration, coarse feed and object temperature can be conveniently and accurately preselected by simply pushing a button. A new feature that has been added is the section thickness selection from outside the cryochamber – now conveniently located at the control panel. Work comfortably while sitting or standing. All functional keys are easily accessible in any position.


Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cryostat


  • Application Needs

Consider what type of tissue and the precision required in your sections. Higher-end models offer more features that can be beneficial for complex and varied applications.

  • Budget and Space

Evaluate your budget and the space available in your lab. Higher-end models tend to be larger and more expensive but offer more advanced features.

  • Ergonomics and Safety

Look for features that reduce strain on users and enhance safety, especially if the cryostat will be used frequently throughout the day.

  • Maintenance and Service

Consider the ease of maintenance and availability of service. Reliable customer support can minimise downtime and extend the lifespan of the equipment.


By understanding the specifications and aligning them with your laboratory’s needs, you can make an informed decision on which Leica cryostat model from Midwest Lab Equipment is the best fit for your lab’s requirements. Each model offers unique benefits, so consider your lab’s specific needs related to sample type, volume, and the necessary precision of your histological work.

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