Pentacon Carl Zeiss Jena lenses: the Sonnar 2.8/180

Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 180/2.8
Carl Zeiss Sonnar: a class apart

Using lenses on a big Pentacon SIX medium format means the lenses come huge as well. The most legendary lens is the Sonnar 2.8/180mm, based upon it’s original design for the 1936 Olympics. Over the years, the lens got updated many times and finally got scaled up to the 6×6 medium format coverage. The lens is crisp sharp from wide open and easily covers up to 6×9 and that is noticeable as you hold a lot of glass in your hands. 1350 grams is the total weight. A body builder.

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For Julian, with love -a vintage approach-

Urbex photography is derived from Urban Exploring. You visit abandoned places and buildings and environments that are not open to the public. These forbidden locations are often so interesting because of the story they tell, but it remains illegal to enter. The most important rule is that you are not allowed to break anything or take anything with you. You show respect for the environment you are in and you leave everything behind as you found it. Urbex photographers protect their locations. After all, they are ‘secret, forbidden places’. However, locations are described with hints on Facebook and urbex forums. Addresses are not done. Find the place, be smart and always try to get in touch with the owners of the place or the building. Some urbex spots have become so well-known that they have been found with simple googling.

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Links to vintage cameras & lenses

My favourite Blogs and Youtube channels with lots of reviews of vintage cameras and lenses:

Much research, tests and reviews of vintage lenses, especially for use on digital DSLR cameras can be found on the comprehensive site of Vintage lenses for video

The Art of Photography: Ted Forbes and his reviews with videos about photography.

Zenography: Thoughts and reviews of cameras and lenses both old and new.

Mike Eckman (where does he find the time to review everything?)

35mm cameras (comprehensive database)

Interesting tips & reviews for Leica cameras (vintage and new) from the spontaneous Mr.Leica (Matt Osborne, and it is not all about Leicas).

Reliable vintage camera shops (no affiliation!):

Petrakla camera’s (Holland, all vintage cameras with CLA!)

Analog Lounge (Germany)

Digital Camera Graz (Vienna, a lot of vintage cameras as well, good service!)

WyCameras (England)

DeWit Cameras (Holland)

VQcameras (Holland)

Fotohandel Delfshaven (Holland)

Repairing or CLA for a Leica, do not hesitate, the legend lives in Holland: Will van Manen at

And if you are patient, it will be rewarded on catawiki, every week hundreds of vintage camera’s and stuff.

And if you ever need a manual to one of your old camera’s, the most fantastic site belongs to Mike at My compliments for this historic database of all camera’s.

PentaconSIX: the East-German legend

Pentacon SIX

The Pentacon SIX is one of the most legendary medium format classics. There are numerous websites dedicated to this East German cult camera. And with reason: even in 2020, the results are comparable with those of a 48 MP digital reflex camera. For less than Euro 200 you can be in possession of one the remaining ones with some search on ebay. Built as a solid tank, the camera has no charm with its no-nonsense look, but I fell in love instantly with this chubby lady that performs as one of the best and constitutes the ideal entrance in the 6×6 medium format range.

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Why analog?

The first question is why do analogue photography? What is analogue photography and why would you go back to equipment that actually can do only less in an era of ultra-modern, digital cameras? Why use manual lenses when you have blazing-fast lenses that autofocus in less than a second? And even with the smartphone you can take fantastic photos and add unprecedented effects these days.

A classic vintage b/w photo, made on a German Adox Golf 63 camera in the late fifties.
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Welcome to the passion

The umpteenth site about photography, camera and lenses. But a little bit different by paying a lot of attention to the expressiveness of photos as an art form. So no too technical treats or reviews that go into the mere pros and cons of equipment. No pixels or autofocus speeds, but the pure essence of photography. Here we follow the quest of more and more creative photographers who want to combine new and old, use classic analogue lenses on their digital cameras for photos and video. But also those who focus on purchasing analogue cameras and want to become familiar (again) with the principles of photography with (35mm) films. Or even go one step further by working with 120 mm medium format and even step up to large format. In this portal we explore classic, analogue cameras, lenses and accessories. What makes vintage photography so popular again? What is the magic formula behind this beautiful hobby? I hope this site contributes to answering that question.