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$60 Pentax that's actually a $800 Zeiss with optics by designer of Stanley Kubrick's NASA glass

Andrew Reid

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The Contax Zeiss Distagon 'Hollywood' 28mm F2.0 is a classic fast wide for full frame and is incredible on Super 35mm as well. Wide open it's one of the sharpest F2.0 wide angle lenses av

I use different lenses all the time its not an issue - just correct any color issues in the grade Fd lenses tend to be more blue -  Zeiss lenses warmer more orange etc so as long as you know each len

I think it's the other way round with FD and Zeiss. I find FD warmer.

This guy is an idiot.


If you break off the aperture lever, you just halved the value of your lens, which, incidentally, is way more than $200 (try $500-$800 - he must be thinking of the Pentax-M, which is a different lens). Also, the "useless" plastic ring in the back is a matte baffle to control reflections off the silvered parts of teh back of the lens into the mirror box. Finally the fact that he is surprised that removing the ball detent allows for clickless operation shows that he knows absollutely nothing about lens construction. This is the way that about 95% of lenses that are declicked for video are modified. One of the simplest and most well-known lens mods there is!


If you want to use this on FF EOS, buy a set of JIS screwdrivers (so you don't strip the screws, which aren't Philips), and remove the baffle and aperture lever. It is not difficult and can be done in about 2 minutes by anyone moderately competent in lens repair. If you are serious about image quality, replace the baffle with aother piece of matte material, e.g. a small piece of black velvet. And save those parts! If you ever choose to resell, you will be glad that you didn't mutilate your RARE lens as the author of this article suggests you do.


Also, the author's surprise that there are good Pentax lenses out there shows he knows nothing about vintage glass. Pentax has ALWAYS been the gold standard for Japanese primes, before and after their collaboration with Zeiss, and ther independent designs hold their own with the best of German glass. Note that it was Zeiss who wanted the secret to Pentax's SMC coatings, not the other way around!

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Send it to me and I will remove the lever for the price of return postage, since it would be a crime to snap off the lever as Andy suggests. Seriously, it's not tough to do - I'd have it back on its way to you the next day. 


If you are intereted, PM me for details.



Thanks for the response Andy. So does anybody have a guide how to take apart the lens and remove the iris control lever or is it just better to snap it off as advised in the article?

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cheaper alternatives are


Canon FD 28mm f2 - a very good lens and lot less expensive - but hard to find (internal black paint on the inside barrel can bubble on this and the 35mm f2 - thats the way they made them....)


and my favourite is the Sigma 30mm f1.4 - this lens is quite amazing especially at f1.4


also Sigma now make a micro 4/3  native 30mm f2.8 that is very very sharp and under $200 a huge bargin - it gets great reviews

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its rare - no one in their right mind will sell theirs!!


But there are very good alternatavies like the Sigma 30mm f1.4  ( newer aspheric elements , faster and dare I say sharper too ) which I personally think is a very cinematic looking lens and cheap


if the Sigma was nicknamed 'Hollywood ' everone would buy one.......


it was designed as an APSC lens so its entire making was for approx super 35mm size sensors - hence its cinematic looking feel to it.  this lens is no use on your full frame 5D - but great on aspc and micro 4/3

I use mine with a Lens Turbo speedbooster on my G6 - its getting on for f1.2 - now thats fast and sharp

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