Scanning Electron Microscope: This type of microscope, unlike the compound light microscope, scans the specimen by using a beam of electrons. They produce extremely high resolution pictures and can possible create 3-D images with depth perception. The microscope also has many cons. The majority of which come from the fact it cannot observe living things, or specimens with water in it. The microscope itself is also very costly to buy and maintain, along with its large size.
Light Microscope: The big advantage light microscope have over the electron microscope is the fact that it can observe living things, such as cells. They can also observe stained specimens unlike the electron microscope which cannot due to the need for the specimen to be completely dehydrated. The low cost and small size is another plus, especially for high schools and colleges. The main disadvantage of the light microscope compared to the electron is sheer power. The light microscope cannot observe specimens that are extremely small unlike the electron microscope. This has caused it to fall out of favor for major scientific research.