A novel deformable mirror using 52 independent magnetic actuators (MIRAO 52, Imagine Eyes) is presented and characterized for ophthalmic applications. The capabilities of the device to reproduce different surfaces, in particular Zernike polynomials up to the fifth order, are investigated in detail. The study of the influence functions of the deformable mirror reveals a significant linear response with the applied voltage. The correcting device also presents a high fidelity in the generation of surfaces. The ranges of production of Zernike polynomials fully cover those typically found in the human eye, even for the cases of highly aberrated eyes. Data from keratoconic eyes are confronted with the obtained ranges, showing that the deformable mirror is able to compensate for these strong aberrations. Ocular aberration correction with polychromatic light, using a near Gaussian spectrum of 130 nm full width at half maximum centered at 800 nm, in five subjects is accomplished by simultaneously using the deformable mirror and an achromatizing lens, in order to compensate for the monochromatic and chromatic aberrations, respectively. Results from living eyes, including one exhibiting 4.66 D of myopia and a near pathologic cornea with notable high order aberrations, show a practically perfect aberration correction. Benefits and applications of simultaneous monochromatic and chromatic aberration correction are finally discussed in the context of retinal imaging and vision.