Pentacon 29 2.8
Pentacon 29 2.8 lens review
The Pentacon 29 2.8 was one of the most widely produced wide-angle lenses of the former GDR. It is compact and light and offers decent image quality at a very low price. It is certainly not the best wide-angle lens around, but if you are using a camera with a cropped sensor this lens might still be very interesting for you. You will be able to shoot wider images. At the same time you will not have to worry about the softness of the corners that you will obtain when shooting this lens on a full frame body.
Pentacon 29 2.8 versions
The Pentacon 29 2.8 was manufactured in M42 and was often sold with the Exa 1b and Praktica cameras. All versions have a black finish. All the lenses are multi coated (MC).
- Mounts available:
- Made in east Germany
- Lens elements: 7
- viewing angle: 73°
- minimum focusing distance: 25cm
- Filter mount: M55 x 0.75
- Multi Coating: Yes
“electric” means that the lens has three electric connectors at the back of the lens.
The “auto” branding which enables automatic aperture settings on some analog SLRs. On modern digital cameras both types (electric and Auto) will behave identically.
Pentacon 29 2.8 recommendation
The Pentacon 29 2.8 is certainly one of the most affordable wide angle lenses. Although 29mm is certainly an unusual format, the Pentacon 29 2.8 is a useful lens that will deliver decent results. You will hardly notice this lens as it is very light and nicely build. It’s a nice little travelling companion that won’t leave your shoulder crippled the next day. The 29mm format gives you a slight edge over 35mm lenses if you seek wider perspectives and compositions. nice angle of view that will work great for landscape photography and even portraiture. Its’ minimum focusing distance of 25 cm also comes in handy for portraire and close up shots.
- value for money
- close focusing range of 25cm
- compact, light and solidly build
- value for money
Even if the results are ok, they will never be exceptional. The Pentacon 29mm is more of an outdoor performer. At f2.8, the Pentacon 29mm is not the fastest lens. I had the impression that the images lack luminosity and it is hard to make out details. That was also due to its’ other main problem: the relative softness of the lens (even when stopped down). The center of the image might be sharp but the corners will be very soft and distorted. In the long term the results you obtain might not satisfy you. I personally would rather invest a bit more and get a Carl Zeiss Flektogon 35mm orthe Takumar 28mm.
- soft, especially in the corners
- harsh bookeh
- as every extrem wide angle lens there tends to be some distortion
- not a fast lens
Pentacon 29 2.8 video
Here is a short example video shot using a full frame Canon 6D at f2.8.