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Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8

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15 109,126 Wed November 10, 2021
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
93% of reviewers $46.33 8.80
Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8

Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8
Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8

a.k.a Meyer Optik Orestor 135/2.8. Robin Parmar remarks in his review below that there are 8 pentacon/meyer variants.
Particularly known for its "bokeh monster" 15 blade iris. Note that the later 6 blade versions are reviewed here.

Construction - 5 elements, 4 groups
Angular field - 18° (full frame)
Minimum focusing distance - 1.5m
Diaphragm action - Pre-set
Maximum aperture - f/2.8
Minimum aperture - f/32
Aperture blades - 15
Filter size - 55mm screw-in type (includes 55mm to 58 step up hood filter).
Push-on diameter - 57
Weight - 515g
Barrel length - 94mm
Special features: detachable lens hood; interchangeable mount (mount end unscrews, this can facilitate DIY mount swapping)

Description - A larger version of the 2.8/100, this lens was first made as the Meyer Orestegor with bright fluting finish and pre-set diaphragm, and a detachable mount - either M42 or Exacta. Its production continued with its name changed to Pentacon, where it acquired all black styling, but retained normal coating. The automatic version started in the black fluting period, where both auto and electric versions were made, and acquired multi-coating one generation further down the line. It was also available in B-mount as the Pentacon Prakticar 2.8/135.

For those of you unfamiliar with the preset aperture mechanisms, "Mr Pentacon Six" has made these Utube videos: method 1; method 2.

This thread on stopping light leaks with narrow profile M42 lenses that don't cover the camera mount may be useful.

Big 135mm lens comparison test by BRunner, including pentacon
Mount Type: M42 Screwmount
Price History:

Add Review of Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8
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New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 13
Review Date: November 10, 2021 Recommended | Price: $45.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp lens
Cons: some CAs
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: pentax k-5 Fuji x-t100 x-e1   


very fine GDR lenses of high qualty at a very low price (produced in JENA by CARL ZEISS)

M 42 screw or Practica BC mount

++ excellent sharpness

++ excellent bokeh

O/+ some CAs wide open

+ good CA correction stopped down a few

+/O moderate contrast / some flare

all metal construction

very highly recommended
New Member

Registered: May, 2021
Posts: 15
Review Date: November 1, 2021 Not Recommended | Price: $5.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: The 15 blades make it special
Cons: Color, contrast, sharpness
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 7    Camera Used: Sony A7III   

It's a well made lens, the 15 blades are a beautiful piece of craftsmanship, but to be honest optically it's a bit of a letdown. The lens lacks contrast and color and it's not really that sharp. The starbursts are nice though.

Samples that I took with this lens:
New Member

Registered: October, 2020
Posts: 3

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: October 30, 2020 Recommended | Price: $70.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, beautiful bokeh, cheap!
Cons: for his age, he has nothing negative.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Pentax K20d   


this is the zebra Meyer-Optik Görlitz Orestor 2.8 / 135 version, mount M42. Better known as monster bokeh. For me one of the best tele for portraits. Here is a sample with the K20d.

Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Gotland
Posts: 160
Review Date: March 17, 2020 Recommended | Price: None indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Well made. Good sharpness. 15 aperture blades. Interesting item!
Cons: 100 % manual and slowish to use
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-1   

My lens is called "Orestor" and is an early zebra version. I bought it as "defective". The 15 or so aperture blades had jammed. I wanted the mount for an 200mm Orestegor that lacked a mount.

I managed to put all those aperture blades in order and cleaned things as well as possible with no total disassembly. Then I tried the lens on my K 3 II and was deeply disappinted. So I left it alone for quite a while.

Then I found this thread in another forum:

Preventing M42 adapter light leaks and dust ingress - an easy solution! - Page 3 -

The problem was related to the fact that the Orestor M42 mount is too narrow to mate up against a K mount camera body. The lens just hangs squiggly on the M42 / K-mount adapter. That is mechanically troublesome and light leaks in.

I found a solution and now the lens works fine on my K-1.Quite sharp at f/2,8 and improves when stopping down. The pictures have less contrast than the best modern lenses. The focusing is critical, the long throw and pre-set system helps.

To me this is a valuable item to try out more carefully. Good for Slow Photography.

This link shows the modification I made and some test photos:
New Member

Registered: February, 2019
Posts: 13
Review Date: July 23, 2019 Recommended | Price: $30.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Good at middle distance, great close up
Cons: Weaker at longer distances and poor at infinity
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Film and Pentax DSLR   

I really have no clue how this gets anything like 9/10 from some folks, unless they only use it for close/mid distance work and ignore the weaker images this lens can produce. I had a "Zebra" Gorlitz that was in very good condition. A nice close and beautifully fine and nicely sharp middle distance lens between F5.6 and f11 in fine lighting conditions. Pretty ordinary outside of that range, except for some nice bokeh at f4 and f2.8. Gets poorer in sharpness as you focus to infinity. At close-to-infinity the sharpness falls off considerably. Chromatic aberration (blue/pinkish fringing around high contrast lines) also increases to noticeable levels around infinity. Increase your digital image size by about 20-30% and the varying quality of the image is very noticeable.

Defo not a wildlife lens unless you are shooting digital and your sensor, processor, and software editing system can assist in better longer-distance image processing, but these digital software things are nothing to do with this lens. I mainly use film, so none of that gets in the way of the reality of this lens.

A very nice urban 'round town lens, but a bit heavy and bulky. But otherwise really easy to use, though. Great for mid-distance up to about 30 feet, or portraits, or close work.

You can increase infinity sharpening a little by putting a fine washer under the rear lens section, so moving it back closer to your film or sensor. But this increased chromatic aberration significantly with mine, so I binned that idea and just used it for non long-distance work until its limitations became a frustration.

So simply put together that it's easy to open up and clean out a dirty-glass version. I got mine cheaply. Try not to get ripped off with anyone wanting more than $30-$60 as there are some real profit-seekers out there for this lens pushing the "bokeh monster" hipster cool, thing. Nice bokeh, though.
Site Supporter

Registered: May, 2015
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 892

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: March 4, 2017 Recommended | Price: $15.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: BOKEH, sharp enough, good value
Cons: None really
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

I bought this lens in a charity shop. They wanted £10 for it and it had notable fungus and both caps so I bought it.
My first real go at opening up a lens and cleaning (with much help from kind forum members) came up with a clean (or at least as clean as I could get the front and back elements, (I did not chance my arm by going any deeper).
This lens is not the sharpest available at 135mm, I have a couple of sharper ones but sharp does not equal best. I sold two CZJ 135mm F3.5 Sonnars (M42) over the past couple of years as I had F2.8 lenses that were as sharp and in K mount but not this one.
The bokeh is great, the handling is good with a lovely long focus throw....but not the best min focus distance.
The weight is a bit much, so I tend to use a flanged M42 to K adapter for my piece of mind and not worry about infinity focus. Not a problem as this lens is probably at it's best for subjects not at infinity and have that bokeh.

I nned to take some portrait images with it as this is where it should really shine.

Some images of the extent of the fungus and a squirrel taken at F2.8


Registered: December, 2016
Location: London
Posts: 1,045
Review Date: December 21, 2016 Recommended | Price: $15.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very bright, good bokeh.
Cons: Heavy, all-manual
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Canon Eos 400D   

I originally reviewed this five years ago, when I had a very poor example of this lens and rated it fairly low - in 2021 I picked up an immaculate example with virtually no dust, no fungus, and no whitening of the rear element, and the results were hugely better. Since I'm not allowed to review it twice I've decided to concentrate on the second example, which showed what these lenses are really capable of. No startling revelations, just a very nice lens with amazing bokeh and a very good handling for an all-manual lens.

One thing I should mention from the previous review is that the first one I had came with a Nikon mount, designed to replace the conical M42 or Exakta mounts Praktica usually sold them with. It was a very good fit on my Nikon body, and seemed to have been machined to exact standards. It would be useful to know if anyone is making something like this for e.g. Pentax K mount.

Some examples - all taken in Kensington Gardens, London

For the rest of this shoot and full-sized images see my album here
Junior Member

Registered: March, 2013
Posts: 34
Review Date: October 14, 2016 Recommended | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Solid build, sharp, good colour and contrast, preset
Cons: Heavy, stop-down metering
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax MX   

Mine is the zebra Meyer-Optik Görlitz Orestor 2.8/135 preset version, M42 mount. It is very well built; feels like you could drive your car over it without damaging it (but I'm not trying!). In use, it has amazingly smooth focusing, but a very long focus movement, maybe 340 degrees from infinity to closest focus (1.5 metres, or 5 feet). You're not going to focus on any fast-moving objects without a lot of practice! Surprisingly to me, the aperture ring is further out from the camera than the focus ring (somewhat in the style of rangefinders lenses). Even more surprising, it is clickless; the first such lens I've come across.

When I first used this lens, I struggled with getting focusing and exposure right, as I often needed to open the aperture up to focus, then close it down to match exposure information. What I hadn't realised was that this is a "preset" lens, or indeed quite what that term means. There is a decorative-looking ring just beyond the aperture ring, with a red dot on it, which in my case was set against the 32. Slide that ring away from the camera and you can turn it so the red dot matches any other aperture value, and the lens will then not stop down any further than this. So the idea is to meter first, set the red dot to the chosen aperture, open it up to frame and focus, then a simple twist turns it (clicklessly, smoothly) back to the chosen aperture for the shot. Not quite as simple as my K-mount lenses, but better than other M42 lenses I have tried.

Looking into the lens from the objective end, the most obvious thing you see is the fantastic set of 15 aperture blades. Yes, this lens does create smooth bokeh, and great subject isolation.

Mine shows no obvious signs of coating; I'm guessing from the lack of flare or CA that there is at least some single coating. I also felt there was good colour and contrast, and (bearing in mind the limitations of film in terms of resolution) excellent sharpness. It seems to me to perform way better than my Pentax-M 3.5/135. I expected to try this out and then move it on straight away, but there's definitely something holding me back.

Edited to add some examples, all taken on film on a Pentax MX:

1) Rare example of apple flower and ripe fruit, f/2.8

2) Nice bench, not sure of aperture

3) Statue in Kenilworth Castle garden

New Member

Registered: March, 2016
Posts: 5
Review Date: September 6, 2016 Recommended | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: rather sharp, nice bokeh,solid build
Cons: m42, less sharp than my sonnar
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: k3   

I received this lens but after buying CZ Sonnar 135/2,8 c/y.Sonnar has better bokeh ,sharper and microcontrastI . I recomend to read this very good test:
You can look on my review of the sonnar

New Member

Registered: October, 2014
Posts: 1
Review Date: October 3, 2014 Recommended | Price: $65.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: bokeh , color , sharpness
Cons: no
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: pentax k-5   

great lens, bokeh, color, sharpness, ease of use, all at a height
New Member

Registered: May, 2013
Location: Jakarta
Posts: 2

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: June 9, 2014 Recommended | Price: $170.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: IQ, bokeh, contrast, build quality
Cons: handling, price getting high (to sky) time to time?
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 7    Value: 6    Camera Used: K5, MX, ME Super, MV   

really love this lens, this lens inherits all of the characters on orestor 135/2.8, all identical....
you will not be disappointed to have this lens, highly recommended
New Member

Registered: November, 2011
Posts: 2

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: December 30, 2011 Recommended | Price: $34.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: IQ, sharp, nice colors and contrast, precise focus, CA, solid build...
Cons: 360º focus ring, minimum focus distance 1.5m
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

"PENTACON 2.8/135 Made in G.D.R.", m42 mounting, serial: 7007xxx

I love this lens, sharpness is outstanding, colours and contrast are superb...
Don't need to mention the bokeh, do I?
The 360º focus ring gives you a precise focus, but when you want to go from near to infinite could be annoying.
Outside you must be careful because it is prone to flare, a lot, even with the hood and a filter mounted on, but in the shadows it's perfect...
If you are photographing in low light a tripod is probably a good choice.
I bought this lens on ebay in very bad shape, rust on iris and in some parts full of oil, the lubricant evaporated and condensed on the front and rear element, particles of rust felled into the front element, the focus ring hard to rotate, and the body would wobble... It took me a full day to fully disassemble, de-rust and degrease all the 15 iris blades, clean all the optics, bluing the iris blades to protected against rust and avoid internal reflexes. Reassemble all the 15 iris blades eas hard ( damned this took me 2 hours, but the last try only took me 15 minutes to reassemble the iris), but all this work paid off.

One example of colours contrast and sharpness:
resized down to about 33%

100% center crop:
New Member

Registered: August, 2010
Posts: 24

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: December 2, 2011 Recommended | Price: $2.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: bokeh, very precise focus (360°)
Cons: 360° for focusing...
Sharpness: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 7    Value: 9   

I like it for portraits, street shooting...
Wonderfull wide open!
Veteran Member

Registered: January, 2008
Posts: 8,780

2 users found this helpful
Review Date: December 9, 2010 Recommended | Price: $80.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: build, usability, old style rendering
Cons: minimum focus distance, old style rendering

There is a lot of confusion already on this page. First of all, the lens should simply be named the "Pentacon 2.8/135" since that is what it says on the barrel. VEB Feinoptisches Werk Görlitz manufactured many preset versions, starting in 1965. The first was indeed branded Meyer-Optik Orestor and appeared in zebra styling. But the second, branded Pentacon, was also a zebra. Then followed no fewer than eight other variants. What they all have in common is the preset 15-blade aperture. The later "Auto" and "Electric" versions have automatic apertures, only 6 blades and do not compare on image quality. They should be considered a different lens, so the review above is out of place.

What I like about this lens is its modest weight and length, which increases only a little when you focus down. It has a dedicated screw-on hood, which you may not at first realise is removable. The minimum aperture of f/32 is more than most. The preset mechanism is a joy to use and the focus ring is large and grippy. The rendering is yellower than Pentax, which creates a lovely "old world" vibe. Sharpness is decent and perfect for portraiture.

What I dislike is the minimum focus of 1.5m, which is too long to be comfortable. However, this is the same as the Taks and no-one complains about them. My copy is very difficult to focus and tends to unscrew from the mount if I am turning in the wrong direction! But that is a matter of age. I can also dock the lens marks on sharpness, if I compared to the very best. Purple fringing is easy to create but also easy to destroy in software. You should not expect the sort of micro-contrast possible with more recent designs.

But for fifty quid this is an excellent addition to anyone's toolbox, providing you don't mind metering manually. Actually the preset mechanism rocks! And as I experiment further I am finding nice subjects for the way this lens draws an image.

More details and photos on my blog.

(By the way, I do not believe in assigning a numerical rating so ignore that.)
Veteran Member

Registered: May, 2009
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Posts: 6,513

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: April 28, 2010 Recommended | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: IQ, portrait specialist, bokeh, cool color, sharp
Cons: flare, not as sharp as the other 135mm lenses, not AF


this lens was made for one particular specialty purpose, and that is to take great portraits at 135mm. there is nothing to hate about this lens, it just takes some really smooth and creamy bokeh. it's really a wonderful lens. the sharpness is pretty good at wide open and gets better stop down. very sharp at 5.6 - f8.

of course, there are other 135mm with better IQ sharpness and contrast like the K135/2.5, F/FA135/2.8, 135/3.5 (Pentax or CZ) and the MC 135/2.8 variants, but those lenses dont compare against the Pentacon or Meyer Orestor in terms of bokeh. it just rules over them when it comes to smoothness and very nice softy colors. what's better is that this lens has 15 aperture blades which makes the bokeh circles consistently circular at smaller apertures, thereby making the images more pleasing to look at.

the downside of this lens that it could pretty much flare up and lose a lot of contrast, not to mention that it's only single-coated. that's why a deep hood is necessary whenever you use this lens. aside from that, a very outstanding lens.

Add Review of Pentacon / MeyerOptik Gorlitz Orestogor Preset 135mm F2.8

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