Digital magnification for low vision

Published on
October 31, 2022

Low vision devices can be helpful for most patients suffering from low vision, but  according to the American Optometric Association (AOA), only 20-25% of these patients have been examined by a low vision optometrist.

The purpose of low vision devices is to help those with poor vision that can not be corrected with regular glasses or contact lenses read better, see more clearly, and enjoy the things that they no longer can enjoy due to their vision loss. A variety of magnifying devices are available, such as stand and hand-held magnifiers, telescopes, electronic magnifiers and strong magnifying reading glasses.

What are the different optical and digital low vision devices?

A low vision aid can be optical or digital. The following are optical low vision devices:

  • Magnifying glasses
  • Handheld magnifiers
  • Stand magnifiers
  • Telescopes

In contrast, digital low vision aids include:

  • Handheld digital magnifiers
  • Electronic magnifiers such as Zoomax and Acesight
  • CCTV stand magnifiers
  • Wearable Technology such as eSight and IrisVision
  • Lighting
  • Contrast enhancement

How does digital magnification help low vision patients?

Since an electronic magnifier is digital and has a screen, you can use it even in a dark environment, like a restaurant with dim lighting. In addition to being able to magnify more text than a simple magnifier, digital magnifiers may also allow you to scroll and adjust contrast. With up to 20 times magnification, you get very high quality large images digitally, in contrast to optically magnified images. Digital magnification not only provides more light but it also enhances contrast. In addition, you can get different color imaging, such as black text on a white screen or white text on a black screen.

Those with low vision can read many types of print and writing more easily with digital magnifiers, such as prescription labels, instructions on packages and cans, managing bills and bank statements, reading newspapers, magazines, and books more easily. They can also use it to thread a needle, knit, crochet, and perform other non-reading tasks.

Speak to our low vision optometrist

There are many digital magnifiers available online. However, we highly recommend that you first speak with our low vision eye doctor and have a low vision evaluation. The low vision optometrist will be able to determine your vision needs and recommend the best model for you based on their evaluation of your vision and knowledge of the features offered by various models. Call (562) 925-6591 to schedule a low vision examination.


I haven't actually used the optometrist side, so my review is limited to the vision therapy offered.  This office was recommended by my occupational therapist for the treatment of my double vision following a stroke.

Claire A.

Love this location. I had a brain injury accident from day one one. All the team make you feel you still important and hope in the horizon after when the medical system fell you miserably. Dr. Ikeda very professional and very understanding about your issue. Two tombs up.

Jim K.

My husband and I were immediately impressed with Dr Ikeda. I was hit by a car while cycling which caused broken bones and three brain injuries. The brain injuries caused double vision. Dr. Ikeda examined my eyes and got me started on vision therapy with his occupational therapist who specializes in vision therapy.  She (Chris) is absolutely great.  I am impressed with the array of tools used to help recover my binocular vision.  I am doing things I never thought were possible (balance boards etc).  Chris pushes me and keeps me motivated. I really enjoy my sessions with her.  The office staff is always friendly and they have a wonderful appointment reminder tool that makes it easy to keep my calendar up to date. I am happy the rehab center at Little Co. of Mary recommended them!!

Teresa S.

The Vision Therapy is handled in a separate office through a different door from the shared waiting room. Chris, the vision therapist, has a wide and varied assortment of tools, equipment and resources to best evaluate and treat most vision issues. After just a few visits, my double vision became easier to control, using exercises developed during the therapy process. It was time well-spent.

Joe M.

I have been coming here since I can remember. I love it here. The staff is so amazing and nice. They explain everything they gonna do and never make you feel rushed. Dr. Ikeda has always been my doctor and I would never want another one. He is the doctor for my whole family and is always asking how everyone is doing. I am also so crazy about picking out my frames and have to try so many and each person who helps me take the time and lets me try them all on. I would never want to go anywhere else! I definitely would recommend this office to anyone looking for a great eye doctor.

Kayla W.

This is not for the eye exam but for the frames selection portion. I brought my prescription from Kaiser here with my VSP insurance. The reception staff was very polite and professional.  Manny helped me to pick out frames and explain my coverage.  Very helpful and patient not like the individual at the other place I rated here on Yelp.  I was running late and he still helped me and was not bothered at all.  I am so glad I came here ..........very pleased.

Very professional staff and pleasant.

Daniel G.
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