Ah, well, things are not like they used to be.
From this 2012 article DNA machine can sequence human genomes in hours:
A UK firm spun out from Oxford University has come up with a DNA sequencing machine the size of a USB memory stick, a move that is set to revolutionise the industry....
Oxford Nanopore has spent the last three years developing the machines in secrecy in collaboration with scientists at Harvard and University of California Santa Cruz. The devices are based on DNA "strand sequencing", and could be launched as soon as the second half of the year.
One of the machines, known as GridION, is the size of a DVD player. They can be stacked and plugged into each other to increase the speed. The other sequencer - the "MinION" which is expected to cost less than $900 (£569) - is as small as a USB memory stick.
And then there's this April 2013 article Teenage scientist builds DNA machine to find out why his brother has ginger hair:
Fred Turner, 17, was determined to find a scientific explanation for the fact that his locks are straight and brown while 14-year-old Gus has ginger curls.
So he spent almost a year building the complex equipment – called a Polymerase Chain Reaction machine – using bits and bobs he found around his home, including an old video recorder.
I can remember when building a crystal radio set was a big deal for a kid....
Anyway, there's this from Autogen:
The QuickGene-Mini80 is built by FujiFilm Life Sciences and offered in North America by AutoGen. This is a compact personal extraction system for rapid isolation of DNA or RNA from a variety of samples. ...The QuickGene-Mini80 processes 8 samples in 15 minutes, saving valuable time and labor in your lab....
So if your local police department doesn't want to mess with "bits and bobs" to assemble their own machine, they can buy one.
Edited by phrelin, 05 June 2013 - 09:56 AM.