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Pentacon / Meyer Optik Lydith 30mm f/3.5

Reviews Views Date of last review
15 63,432 Sat December 8, 2018
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $32.75 8.29
Pentacon / Meyer Optik Lydith 30mm f/3.5

Pentacon / Meyer Optik Lydith 30mm f/3.5
Pentacon / Meyer Optik Lydith 30mm f/3.5

M42 Mount manual lens, with continuous aperture setting ring.

Aperture values: f/3.5 to f/22 (step-less)

Minimum focusing distance: approx. 0.3m (1.1ft)

Filter thread: 49mm

Dimensions (with front cap and m42->K + PK rear cap):
Length: 62 [mm]
Diameter: 58 [mm]

Review of "zebra" version (pic 2) here.
Mount Type: M42 Screwmount
Price History:

Add Review of Pentacon / Meyer Optik Lydith 30mm f/3.5
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 15
New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 6
Lens Review Date: December 8, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $45.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: very sharp lens without CA's
Cons: a few weak and not so sharp in the extreme corners
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: k-s1, k-x, k200d   

++ very sharp lens in the center

++ CA's not remarquable

++ very nice bokeh

O unfortunately a few weak and not so extreme sharp in the inextreme corners

opotimal for portraits
Site Supporter

Registered: May, 2015
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 806
Lens Review Date: May 27, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $12.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Cheap but rather good.
Cons: None really.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

My copy was bought in 1968 making it approximately 49 years old.
In better condition than I am but I am a lot older.
To be honest I've only had the lens a couple of days but the original owner stated that he bought it new in 1968. He had it fitted to his Zenit EM that he bought in 1986 that I also bought. Nice to have a good memory.
I have problems with wide lenses, just cannot appreciate them. I bought this because the Pentacon 29mm I had previously was a bit of a disappointment and from the reviews on the forum it seemed to be good.
It is quite good. Far better than the Pentacon 29mm I had. F3.5 is very usable.
No apparent aberrations, nice Bokeh, easy to use pre-selected aperture, quite close focussing with a flanged adapter and of course a depth of field that can mean the flanged adapter will get quite some distance in focus with narrow apertures.
This copy has some tiny black stuff on the front element, doesn't seem to affect the images until F16.. A quick attempt to remove it using lens cleaning fluid was unsuccessful, it does not seem to want to budge. The tiny screw on the front bezel is discoloured too, otherwise is in fair condition as described.
My best wide angle is probably my Pentax-M 28mm F3.5 and this is close. Well worth the small outlay.
New Member

Registered: February, 2015
Posts: 7
Lens Review Date: October 30, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, great macro lens with rings
Cons: none for the price
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax K5   

Great focal length for APSC and useful for many styles on Full frame also! Very underrated lens, renders beautifully and is as sharp as you'd ever need. I slapped some extension rings on it and was totally blown away by the performance as a macro lens. See the examples below for an idea. All taken with natural light only. These are full frame examples not cropped and the post processing was minimal. (Raw conversion and a slight boost to contrast.)

New Member

Registered: January, 2016
Location: between Toulouse and Pyrenees Mountains
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: January 3, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: compact and quite sharp at F8- F11, nice bokeh
Cons: old and need a cleaning
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 8    Camera Used: K200D and K_5   

My version is not the same as the one featured for this article. My version is nearly the same as the zebra but black.

Mine is very old, dirty and used, which make it look older as it really is.
I will test it again when It will be cleaned.
no fungus but a lot af dust on it and sticky blades.

I like this lens quite much it's not my favourited but it's a great walkaround lens and not bad to make some landscape or details pictures.
Even if wide open it don't go faster than F3.5 Bokeh is smooth and very progressive (maybe the 10 blades effect)

So I recommend this lens.

I posted a quick review on my blog (reedited form my first blog in 2010)
New Member

Registered: May, 2013
Location: Jakarta
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: September 24, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: perfect for APSC, bokeh, price
Cons: fair sharpness wide open on full frame
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: K5, A7   

i have both Pentacon and MOG Lydith, they are identically, for me the lens is perfect in APSC sensor, it has proportional bokeh and good sharpness in crop factor
in full frame sensor the sharpness become reducing related to more wide capture, but still ok, lens hood possibly good for any full frame capture
I am not sure this lens has a single or multi-coated, i try shoot test the Pentacon (not Lydith) against the sun and it's flare resistance is very good

here they are the samples shots:
Site Supporter

Registered: April, 2011
Location: Lost in translation ...
Posts: 17,317
Lens Review Date: August 10, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Pre-set, sharp enough, MFD bokeh, nice build
Cons: Corners, not sharp enough wide open ...
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-3, K-5, K-r   


Well, I picked up a Pentacon pre-set version of this lens for 12€ delivered and could not be happier. I had seen some images and had put this lens on my "radar list" ... below are some sample images at or near MFD and f4.5 ... still learning this lens.

A "9" rating for this focus distance and its bokeh ... at longer distances its just "OK" in my books ... so a 7.5 score there.

Veteran Member

Registered: January, 2012
Posts: 1,973
Lens Review Date: June 18, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp (if not decentered !!) , vivid and truthfull coolours, no CA, bokeh, preset aperture, 10 blades, superb for video !
Cons: Slow-ish (f3.5), prone to decentering issues ( my first copy was)
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-01   

My experience with this lens started when I got into Meyer Optik lenses. Sadly, my first copy was badly decentered - and from what I see on-line *many* copies of this excellent lens are decentered. So I returned it and got myself a mint copy of Pentacon branded version. Sure I paid more, but buying from a reputable UK seller paid off ! My second copy is pristine, perfectly centered, sharp and contrasty.
I mainly use it for video, where it excels on my K-01. Thanks to lack of CA and other nasty aberrations, I can enjoy clean and pleasant footage. Also sharpness is excellent - I am confident to use it from wide open in either low light or bright conditions, but it does benefit from stopping down on sides and corners. By F8-11 it is perfectly sharp everywhere , but I rarely use it like this. Most pleasant quality it shows is in its bokeh , which truly is excellent and in itself makes the lens a worthy purchase.

But not only that! As other have pointed, lens will give you vivid and truthful colours, good contrast and pleasant rendering. Note however, that it is an old , vintage lens, so the field curvature will need you to think about your shot, to plan and position properly. Stopping down for landscapes is necessary to bring corners to the order. But for video you can easilly get away with wide open shooting.

All written above is not valid for de-centered lens, which will give you fuzzy sides, one side sharper than the other, and one side always somehow blurried. Ifg you get a lens like this - know it has been tampered with and was decentered.

To sum up : in VIDEO use , it is 10 out of 10 , for STILS, I would rate it 8 or 9 out of 10 - depends on the application. So overall it is a strong 9 for me.

Finally photos - here are some I got with this lens, nothing fancy, just some snaps - as I said earlier I mainly use it for video not stills.
You can click to see bigger version on flickr

F5.6 or F8


F8 ?

F3.5 ( wide open)

F8 ?

F3.5 wide open


F3.5 or F4 ?

Registered: September, 2013
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,672
Lens Review Date: March 10, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Inexpensive wide-angle, lovely starbursts, preset (if you like that sort of thing)
Cons: Soft on edges, small range of apertures for sharpness
Sharpness: 6    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 8   

Pros: an inexpensive wide-angle (though on an APS-C it's more of a normal lens). The 10 aperture blades give some wonderful starbursts, and the bokeh (if you can get it working) can be quite smooth and lovely looking. Once you have it stopped down enough, the image is nice and sharp, but...

Cons:'ve got to stop it down quite a bit before it gets sharp. (On my copy, f5.6 gives you a sharp right edge, but the left edge doesn't become sharp until f8.) It also has a fairly small range of sharpness, diffraction quickly setting in somewhere shortly after f11.

(Supposedly there is much variation among copies of this lens, so yours may vary.)


Gooderham by Andrew, on Flickr

f5.6 (SOOC, check the upper left for an example of the pronounced softness):

SOOC by g026r, on Flickr

Unknown aperture:
Together by Andrew, on Flickr

Bokeh example:
Bouquet by Andrew, on Flickr
Senior Member

Registered: May, 2012
Posts: 132
Lens Review Date: October 17, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $10.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Good color, sharp, cheap
Cons: None (so far)
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

Just bought it recently but didn't use it for a while. Now that i have, I like it. It is really sharp, and produces nice colors. I have not used it in a full range of scenes yet, so I will update my review when i do, but for now, I like it alot. It defintely doesn't feel as good as a Takumar, and the pull-out aperture ring took a little getting used, but when i viewed the images on my computer, i was very pleasantly surprised. And for the price, how can you go wrong (or should i say, where do i get another?)?
New Member

Registered: March, 2012
Posts: 22
Lens Review Date: February 10, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: rendition, vintage look, small
Cons: flare
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

Nice small lens. A lens that never disappoints. I have the first 10 blade's version of this lens and I like the colours and that special vintage look a lot. This lens is compact, light weight, cheap and quite sharp. Flares a lot if you try to shoot a strong light source.
Site Supporter

Registered: March, 2010
Location: Frankfurt am Main
Posts: 1,207
Lens Review Date: November 2, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $11.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: sharpness, bokeh
Cons: no multi-coating

I don't presently own this lens (used it for a short while on an Exakta back in the seventies), but I feel I should add some missing information.

This lens, right from the start, had a VERY good reputation as the "Meyer Görlitz Lydith 3.5/30mm". In East Germany it had the reputation to match or even outmatch the Zeiss lenses (Zeiss and Meyer had been competitors since their beginnings).

It specially was said to be very sharp, offering nice colours and extreme centre sharpness even fully open, and to be a "bokeh monster" with its 10(!) aperture blades.

When the East German Government melted all the small optical companies to one big one ("Pentacon"), the lens was renamed to "PENTACON 3.5/30mm". Some say the lens was improved as a Pentacon, but many (including me) are doubting this. They even never gave it a proper multi-coating. The plan had been to replace it by the newer "PENTACON 2.8/29mm" (probably based on the former Meyer Orestegon 2.8/29), which now got multi-coating, but was cheaper to manufacture (6 blades only). However, as a rare case of listening to customers, they went on producing both lenses in parallel.

The market for this lens (and most Pentacons) was the (Eastern European) Comecon bloc, and in Western Europe mainly the UK. It was offered with M42 or Exa/Exakta bayonet, but also with multiple other bayonets for East German cameras as Pentina, Practina, etc. The Exakta versions sometimes sell a bit cheaper than the M42 ones. However, RioRico described a way to fit Exakta mounts to K bayonet bodies (the information is somewhere in this forum).

Edited Nov 13th,2012: I had written this from memory, but later found 2 errors which I now corrected.

Edited Dec 2nd,2012: Inspired by this review, I now purchased a M42 one (eBay, EUR 8.50), cheap because looking quite dirty and battered. After cleaning, looking fine and not battered at all. First tests show optics and mechanics are ok. If I have some more time (and the weather is better), I may make some more tests. I could compare with my SMC-A 2.8/28, Tokina 2.8/35, Revue special 2.8/35, and half a dozen zoom lenses covering 30mm. Unfortunately, my Mitake 2.0/28 needs repair.
New Member

Registered: August, 2010
Posts: 19
Lens Review Date: November 1, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: sharp, color rending, light, unexpensive
Cons: in fact, f3.5 is not negative.
Sharpness: 9    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 9   

A light, good using lens...

New Member

Registered: July, 2012
Posts: 14
Lens Review Date: July 24, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $10.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Easy to set aperture and focus, reasonably sharp
Cons: Limited to f/3.5, M42 fit
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 9    Value: 9   

I got this lens off ebay UK for £6. Came complete with end caps and original box.

Unlike another reviewer I like the sprung pull out aperture pre-setting ring which makes focussing at full aperture very easy with no danger of aperture changing when you stop down to shoot.

I've only used it a couple of times so far so not had a chance to give it a full workout, however, I'm fairly happy with it.

I think it is sharper than the DAL 18-55 kit lens that came with my K-r so is well worth having in the lens collection - especially at the low price. It did need some adjustment of EV settings to get bright exposures though. However, this seems to be a common feature of old M42 lenses ?

If you can get one for less than $10 what have you got to lose ? At least it forces you to practice using AV and manual focussing, and all experience it worth it !

Veteran Member

Registered: August, 2007
Location: Shropshire, UK
Posts: 1,114
Lens Review Date: August 19, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $5.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Excellent colour rendering, it surprised me. Sharp enough as well.
Cons: A bit soft at the edges

I picked this lens up with a Zenit and a bunch of other lenses, I wanted the Industar that came with it, but it's a lens I keep using.

The focal length is good on my K10, and the colours are very very good.

The aperture ring is a fiddle to use, the front is spring loaded so you pull it away from the camera to pre set an apeture then you can focus wide open and just flick it back to the chosen aperture, or just set it wide open and smoothly stop down.
Use it correctly and it's a pain, do it the easy way and it's....easy!

Good lens for the money, there must be loads about so there's no reason to pay lots of money for one.
Veteran Member

Registered: January, 2008
Posts: 1,076
Lens Review Date: June 8, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Cheap, light, simple, nice build, good sharpnes.
Cons: Slow aperture, no m42 automation and some chromatic aberations.

I was looking for a CHEAP manual wide for my mechanical film camera and occasional use on DSLR. Between the numerous odd and unknown names of cheapest 28mm's i noticed somewhat known brand - Pentacon. I decided to give it a try.

I must admit, despite it being slow and not very well known i was pleasantly surprised. Mostly because it is quite sharp wide open. At this price point there are usually noticeable quality trade-offs, but this lens performed quite well.

Here are some samples, to tell you the rest of the story:
(k200d, all at f/3.5)

And by the way, i think there might be some other versions of this lens:

(PICTURE NOT MINE, all credit goes to the appropriate flickr user or whoever took the picture).
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