Super-Resolution (SR) fluorescence microscopy is typically carried out on high-end research microscopes. Super-resolution Optical Fluctuation Imaging (SOFI) is a fast SR technique capable of live-cell imaging, that is compatible with many wide-field microscope systems. However, especially when employing fluorescent proteins, a key part of the imaging system is a very sensitive and well calibrated camera sensor. The substantial costs of such systems preclude many research groups from employing super-resolution imaging techniques.
Here, we examine to what extent SOFI can be performed using a range of imaging hardware comprising different technologies and costs. In particular, we quantitatively compare the performance of an industry-grade CMOS camera to both state-of-the-art emCCD and sCMOS detectors, with SOFI-specific metrics. We show that SOFI data can be obtained using a cost-efficient industry-grade sensor, both on commercial and home-built microscope systems, though our analysis also readily exposes the merits of the per-pixel corrections performed in scientific cameras.