PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC review

For the opportunity PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC review Many thanks to Alexander from the Manual Optics section.

PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC

PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC

The PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC has several modifications, for example PENTACON electric 2.8 / 29 MC and PENTACON auto. The parent of all modifications was Meyer Orestegon 2.8 / 29. The copy from this review is one of the latest versions, the lens has a M42 fit thread and a diaphragm control mode switch.

TTX PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC:
Design: 7 elements in 7 groups
Front Filter Diameter: 55mm
Fit thread: M42
The weight: 240g
Aperture limits: F2.8-F22
MDF: 25cm
Made in: German Democratic Republic (GDR)

Lens view PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC

View of the PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC lens, aperture and case

My copy came in a pretty case, it looked like no one had ever used it, the lenses were perfectly clean, the case hadn't been worn out for years of use. It alerted me that a good lens and no one used it - a rarity. But as it turned out with the lens and the picture on it - everything is in order. The front lens has a slightly purple multi-coating tint. In size, it is slightly larger than Helios-81N.

View of the modern Pentacon 29 2.8 cameras

View on a modern Pentacon 29 2.8 lens camera

The main features of the lens

  1. PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC is a manual lens from film cameras with an M42 mounting thread. You can only focus manually. It can be used both on a full frame and on a crop. The focusing ring is quite comfortable. Focus is nice.
  2. 2,8 maximum aperture makes this lens fast enough to take a normal result when taking it off in poor light. Also, 29mm is easier to avoid picture blur than on lenses with a longer focal length. Although, this is all conditional, shooting in some kind of clubyou can’t do without a flash. The number of aperture blades is only 6 pieces. The bokeh on the open is even very good.

    Pentagon 29mm 2.8 MC auto photo

    Pentagon 29mm 2.8 MC auto photo

  3. Multi-Enlightenment (MS) allows you to get a contrasting picture and overcome backlight. In strong backlight against the sun, the lens gives a veil, but not a very strong one. Lateral light transfers normally.
  4. The build quality is excellent, because it was made in the GDR. I was pleased with the stylish lens case, and of course the inscription German Democratic Republic.

    Photo at Pentacon 29mm F2.8 MC auto

    Photo at Pentacon 29mm F2.8 MC auto

  5. The housing has all the necessary indicators, as for any non-autofocus lens. Infinity on the focus distance scale starts at 4 meters. DOF is indicated for the following aperture values: 4, 8, 16, 22.
  6. The thread under the 55mm filter will make it easy to find the right filter. Also, when focusing, the front element does not spin, it only moves 2 cm forward.

    Photo at Pentacon 29mm F2.8 Multi Coating auto

    Photo at Pentacon 29mm F2.8 Multi Coating auto

  7. The lens is very small MDF (minimum focusing distance), this will allow you to shoot from a very close distance and thereby control the perspective. For a wide angle - MDF is a very important indicator.
Bokeh on Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto with MDF

Bokeh on Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto with MDF

 Image quality

It is difficult to judge the quality, since I could not use the lens for shooting architecture, landscapes, etc. This happened due to the loss of the ability to focus at infinity on my Nikon camera. Usually, a lens with such a focal length is used for landscapes and nature. I only used it for big shots. HA pronounced on contrasting objects. The distortion is easy to see, it is still 29mm. Color reproduction is normal. I did not notice vignetting even at 2.8 on my cropped matrix. They say that the PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC is not sharp enough, but my copy showed good sharpness and at F2.8, closing the aperture, the sharpness only increases. There is a slight spherical aberration effect. Somewhere after F11, a diffraction effect occurs on the crop. But even on F22 the picture is pretty sharp, don't believe me - see examples. The back and side light does not hold very well, but not very bad either. Bokeh too, not special, but pretty nice.

Sharpness on Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto, no processing

Sharpness on Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto, no processing

How to use with modern cameras?

Lenses with mounting thread M42 (M42 X 1 / 45.5), such as the lens from this review, are very easy to use on almost any modern digital camera (both SLR and mirrorless), for this it is enough to choose the right adapter (adapter). You do not need to carry out any additional steps to modify the lens.

The cheapest adapters can be found at There are adapters (adapters) with a chip that provide more convenience during shooting, usually chips are used to confirm focus and / or metering exposure, and form the correct EXIF. The chip does not affect the image quality in any way.

For some SLR cameras (for example, with the Nikon F-mount), you need to use adapters with a corrective lens, which allows you to focus correctly at all focusing distances. For any mirrorless cameras, such a lens is not needed, and the adapter is a simple decorated hollow metal tube with an appropriate mount.

For SLR cameras

  1. Canon: For cameras Canon EOS with bayonet mount EF / EF-S need an M42-Canon EOS adapter, such an adapter with a chip can be found herewithout chip here.
  2. NIKON: For cameras Nikon DX / FXas well as for cameras Fujifilm и Kodak with a Nikon F mount, you need an M42-Nikon F adapter, you can buy such an adapter without a lens and a chip here, with a lens without a chip herewith chip without lens here, with lens and chip here. Why a lens? Why chip?
  3. PENTAX: For Pentax cameras with K mount, you need an M42-Pentax K adapter, you can buy such an adapter here.
  4. SONY/MINOLTA: For cameras with a Sony / Minolta A mount, you need the M42-Sony A adapter, you can find such an adapter without a chip at this linkwith a chip at this link.
  5. OLYMPUS/PANASONIC/LEICA: For cameras with a 4/3 bayonet mount (not to be confused with Micro 4/3!) You need an M42-4 / 3 adapter, you can buy such an adapter here.

For mirrorless cameras

  1. SONY: For cameras with 'E'/'FE' mount series SonyNEX и Sony Alpha you need an adapter M42-Sony E (aka M42-Sony Nex), you can find it at this link. An autofocus adapter is also available for these cameras. Techart PRO Leica M - Sony E Autofocus Adapterwhich can be found at this link.
  2. OLYMPUS / PANASONIC / KODAK / XIAOMI: For cameras with a bayonet mount Micro 4/3 (Micro 4:3) you need an adapter M42-Micro 4/3, you can find it at this link.
  3. CANON M: For cameras with Canon EF-M mount need adapter M42-Canon M, it can be found at this link.
  4. CANON R and RF-S: For cameras with Canon RF mount need adapter M42-Canon R, it can be found at this link.
  5. Nikon 1: For cameras Nikon 1 Series need adapter M42-Nikon 1, you can find it at this link.
  6. Nikon Z: For cameras Nikon Z series (FX/DX) need an adapter M42-Nikon Z, it can be found at this link.
  7. FUJIFILM X: For cameras with mount X need an M42-Fuji X adapter, you can find it at this link.
  8. FUJIFILM GFX: For medium format cameras G-mount need M42-Fuji GFX adapter, you can find it at this link.
  9. SAMSUNG: For cameras with NX mount, you need an M42-Samsung NX adapter, you can find it at this link. There are no adapters for the NX mini camera yet.
  10. PENTAX: For Q-mount cameras, you need an M42-Pentax Q adapter, you can find it at this link.
  11. SIGMA / PANASONIC / LEICA: For cameras with L mount you need an M42-Leica L adapter, you can find it at this link.
  12. LEICA: For cameras with a bayonet mount Leica M need adapter M42-L / M, you can find it at this link.

If you have any questions on compatibility and adapters - ask in the comments (comments do not require any registration at all).


Photograph by Pentacon 29mm 2.8 MC auto

Photograph by Pentacon 29mm 2.8 MC auto

On cropped cameras, the angle of view becomes narrower, and on Nikon with 1.5x crop, this is already the equivalent of 43,5, for Canon with 1.6x crop it is already 46,4 mm (almost fifty dollars). On the crop, all the wide-angle of the lens and many of the charms of using the PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC are lost. How to use on other systems like Pentax, Sony, Olympus - you can easily find on the Internet. From old manual lenses, it is very difficult to find a really wide-angle lens for crop, so that on the crop it is also wide enough. If you need a good wide-angle fast lens, the PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC is not very suitable for this role. Personally, for a wide angle, I used to use the simplest whale one, now I have a good copy in service Tamron 17-50 2.8.

Aperture example on a Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto

Aperture example on a Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto

Sample photos on PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC

All photos taken on Nikon D40. Photos without processing, only reduced size 1600 * 1200 pixels, added watermark (watermark) from EXIF. Many people ask, but how do I add focal length and aperture from EXIFif I use a lens without dandelion lushnikov, moreover - on the camera, without the ability to manually set the parameters. It's very simple - I write down at what focal length (if it's a zoom lens) or at what aperture this or that picture was taken, and then I manually enter the values ​​into the watermark in the photos. Sometimes I forget to write down or remember the exact value, so I indicate the approximate aperture limits, for example, it happened with the Tair-11A, when on a cold spring day of filming near the sea I forgot to write down the values.

Photo at Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto

Photo at Pentacon 29 2.8 MC auto

Comments on this post do not require registration. Anyone can leave a comment. Many different photographic equipment can be found on AliExpress.

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The PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC is a good wide angle lens. I do not recommend using it on a crop. Gives a good, fairly sharp picture, is a little afraid of backlighting.

Material prepared Arkady Shapoval. Training/Consultations | Youtube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Telegram

Add a comment: Anonymous



Comments: 67, on the topic: PENTACON auto 2.8 / 29 MC review

  • Vyacheslav

    I want to take this lens for my film "Practice". I think it's a good option, what do you think?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      I think this is a great lens.

      • Svetlana Prokhorenkova

        And if you sell a lens, then what is the possible price? thank

  • Michael

    Now I have a Pentacon auto 2,8 \ 29 in temporary use, without MC, with a repeater button instead of a mode switch in your version. Shabby and has noticeable backlash in the clips. The rear lens has damaged antireflection coating. Perhaps because of this, the photos are slightly hazy with mediocre sharpness, regardless of aperture. Focusing is difficult, the image in the eyepiece always seems to be somehow “undercooked.” Besides, the contrast is low, which further reduces the impression of a seemingly good thing ...

  • Andrei

    Good day! Thanks Arkady for your site and all the reviews, this is really cool and helps! There is an opportunity to take such a lens, but with the corp, and you wrote that it is better not to put it on the corp, why? And what is better on Helios Corp. 44th or this. Thanks for the answer!

  • Bogdan

    I bought this Pentacon and 135 / 2,8.
    Tell me please, what does the A / M switch on the case mean?
    In the M mode, the 5D camera loses the ability to enter the aperture value, and, it seems, that's it ...

  • Ismail

    On average, the aperture is quite sharp, which gives him + against my World 1-in which I was not satisfied. (compared it at a value of 2.8 with the world, so the pentacon showed better sharpness against the world 1-B)

  • Legacy

    I wonder how much this lens is similar to 2,8 / 28?

  • Roman

    Arkady, from close range he is very pleasant, judging by your photos. You masterfully use shirik like fifty dollars) At first, I was very inspired and almost wanted to buy this glass ... According to reviews on the Internet, this soap if you use it not as fifty dollars but for its intended purpose, i.e. as wide.
    Thank you

  • Andrei

    There is such a lens ... I am the only owner, I worked perfectly at the Practice, I wanted to adapt it to Nikon, but the masters advised me to offer it to the owners of Kenon, so I decided to sell it, if anyone is interested, write to the mailbox

    • Artem

      I'm interested in the mail:

    • Vladimir

      I'm interested too. The issue of price. They stole the same from me. I will put on a film PRACTICE -L

    • Vladimir

      My personal Here we are talking about shirik PENTAKON auto 29 F buy

  • Sergei

    Can you tell me which lens is preferable to MIR-10 a or Pentacon 2.8 / 29mm?

  • Vladimir

    I bought this lens in 1986 while working in the GDR. For four years in Germany, a lot of slides were shot on Zenit TTL with excellent quality. A very good lens for a film camera. On the digital Sony A65 I can't figure it out yet.

    • Jury

      A little more about Sonya A-65 and pentacon 2.8 / 29mm. Thanks in advance. Email: yurivants @ Gmail. com

  • Andrei

    Normal lens. I use the Canon 400D camera.
    When buying, I watched the review here, did not break off with a choice.
    The photos are quite high-quality, sometimes you have to modify the images of course, I photograph in raw.

  • Andrei

    Forgot to add.
    Modifying images due to the peculiarities of the love of the lens to the sun and cloudy weather.

  • Ivan

    There is one in perfect condition who needs to write.

    • Dima

      Interesting. Kiev? Price?

      • Anastasia

        There is one. Kiev. Write to the mail if you are still interested

    • Jury

      How much?

    • Vladimir

      I need. Thank. My address is: What is the price? Write in a personal.

      • anonym


  • Alexander

    Arkady, please tell me which adapter used?
    I have a Nikon D40 with this lens focusing at a distance of no more than 30cm. :(

  • anonym

    tell me how much does the camera praktika mtl 5 b MC pentagon auto 2.8 / 29? I can sell!

  • Jury

    To whom it is interesting. I can sell with practice l. Everything is in good condition. Write

  • Andrei

    a great lens paired with practice but now it is idle, in perfect condition ... I would sell it

  • Andrei in perfect condition and not expensive !!!

  • Alexander

    Tell me, is there a noticeable difference between models with and without MS? In normal condition

  • Ilya

    Hello Arkady! Question! Is it possible to remake this lens for the Nikon working range by shifting the lens block into the inside of the camera or shifting the rear lens, as they do on a regular Helios 44-2?

    • Rodion

      Only the displacement of the entire lens block inward, due to the remake of the tail.

      • Ilya

        Thank you!)

  • Alexander

    Thanks to the author for the reviews! You are doing a very useful job. I also test a little)) Everything is based on my own glass. Nevertheless, on my knee tests for almost 30 years of my passion for this business, there were not so few lenses. This particular lens became the main negative hero of my experiments, which was not so easy, considering that I tested the simplest triplets, industrialists and all sorts of ordinary Helios. But worse than him - there was no glass. It's not even a lack of sharpness or plebeian bokeh (solid bagels), but the whole picture is just disgusting, chaotic, sluggish. Brrr. And also the lens was not used in the test, not a single speck of dust, just from the conveyor.

  • Dmitriy

    The trouble with this lens is in the mounting of the rear lens block with three screws. The lens unit is often offset from the optical axis. The sharpness is uneven on the sides of the frame.
    I adjusted the position of the lens block using focus picking on sony nex. The sharpness zone (highlighting on the nexa screen) when aiming at the focus should appear from the center and diverge evenly to the sides (and not from the corner, edge of the frame and go to the opposite corner, edge).
    Pointed to the laptop screen with b / w text. I took off the back of the lens and moved the lens block to the side from where the sharpness zone (1-0.5 turns of the screws) appeared until it hit the center.

  • Fedor

    I have the same lens, I use everything on Canon 60d for canopy XNUMXd except for infinity, since this lens has a different working length, so I have to shoot objects that are relatively close, in general, I liked the color rendering much more than helios

  • anonym

    At first, my Practice had terrible "fistulas" when shooting against the light and generally a weak contrast when shooting with this lens, but then a very knowledgeable person opened my eyes: the whole thing, it turns out, is in the film channel, in its poor reflective property. Having pasted it over with black fleecy material under the mirror and around it, I DISCOVERED SUCH AN IMMEDIATE DIFFERENCE, THAT IMMEDIATELY I WASPAED ALL THE PRACTICES I HAVE AND ESPECIALLY ZENITS. HAD LIKE A TILES FROM WHICH PARASITIC LIGHTS JUST COULD NOT BACK INTO FRAME! THERE IS NO LONGER TO FORGET THAT THE LENS GIVES A CIRCULAR IMAGE, AND THE FRAME IS WRITTEN INTO THIS CIRCLE A RECTANGLE, SO ALL THE LIGHT WAS NOT WRITTEN IN THIS RECTANGLE, THE RIGHT CORNER IS INTO THIS CIRCLE! MEYER ORESTEGON (OR ORESTON, not remember now) .A the man I called CAN-IT TWICE AWARD WINNER Politzer, the chief of the Moscow branch ASSOSHIAYTED PRESS ALEKSANDOR ZEMLYANICHENKO.V iternete about him abound NAPISANO.NO What strikes me most: EVEN NIKON D -2 NOW THERE IS NO FILM CHANNEL LIKE IN GOOD FILM TIMES ... WITH RESPECT TO ALL WHO WILL READ VICTOR S.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Writing in capital letters is ugly and impolite. Thanks.

  • anonym


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