Meyer Optik Görlitz launched a new Lydith 30mm f/3.5 lens on Kickstarter

Meyer Optik Görlitz launched a new Lydith 30mm f/3.5 project on Kickstarter. The new lens is described as "the sharpest and most contrasty lens" in the company's history.

Designed in the late 1950s and introduced in 1964, the modern version of the Lydith will be updated with high-perfomance lens coatings and a short minimum focusing distance of 8 inches (16 cm). Like all of Meyer-Optik's lenses, the Lydith will be fully manual, 100 percent handmade in Germany.

Additional information:

The Lydith is maybe the sharpest and most contrasty lens in our historic art lens portfolio and of course, as a Meyer-Optik lens, it can produce extraordinary bokeh.

The Lydith has an extremely low minimum focusing distance of 0.16m. So you can get very close to your object, while still displaying a good portion of the surroundings. If you have a lens at a focal length, you might have things in mind you want to shoot with it. But due to the Lydith's performance, you will try out setups you wouldn't have shot with any other lens at this range.

The Lydith 30mm f3.5 is built using the same platform that we used for our Trioplan 50 and 35mm lenses. Thus we take advantage of some economies of scale and can offer this breathtaking lens to our backers at a very special price. Following our design principles, this lens is compact and light and weights just above 220g.

We have set extremely tight standards in our lens design that can only be met by using the best Schott and O`Hara glasses and having them produced under the toughest quality measures. We will be using a special coating in the front and back lens that will make the lenses extremely durable and tough for a lifelong enjoyment.

Some of the Meyer Optik Görlitz lenses are also available for direct purchase at retailers.

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  • Zos Xavius

    Should be reasonably priced…. 😉

    • Mistral75

      $549 as “crazy deal”, $899 for a customized Lydith with a personal engraving (12 digits).

    • jojo

      I had one of these in the 1970s as my very first wideangle lens (I think it was the rebadged Pentacon version). Can’t remember
      exactly, but think it was around £15 new!

  • TinusVerdino

    Or get one of ebay… It was also made under the Pentacon brand

  • Haha, well over 500 bucks… for a lens that on the vintage market could be had for like ten times less.

  • Ashraf Al-hujaili

    i want to know what is so special about this lens ? and why people are really backing it up soo fast ??
    it’s 30 mm , and f3.5 !!! God why do i want such a lens ??

    • TinusVerdino

      It’s sharper than the 29mm 2.8. But there is plenty of legacy 28mm F3.5 glass that is also pretty sharp. It must be a collector thing.

      • Ashraf Al-hujaili

        well , i don’t know, but there is sigma 30 f1.4 art lens and it’s really sharp , and it’s 200 $ less !
        also there is a lot of sharp 28 mm lenses
        and 35 mm lenses are on fire when it comes to sharpness.

        • Spehmaster G.

          The Sigma is sharp, that’s for sure. However, with all those corrective elements, the lens is pointlessly heavy and the images produced by it are so ‘flat’ and unrealistic. In my opinion, It’s only useful for very low light photography, when nothing else will do.

      • Spehmaster G.

        The original 60’s Lydith is a fantastic lens, it really needs to be used to be appreciated.. The depth and realistic colour reproduction is amazing.. Beautiful in fact.

        Moreover, I prefer the look of a 30mm focal length, over a 28 or 24mm, it’s about as wide as I like to go, if realism is the plan.. Any wider the lens will start to noticeably distort.

    • Max

      It’s a hipster thing.

    • Spehmaster G.

      If your asking.. Then You don’t.

  • Jeffry De Meyer

    I wonder how much those images have been cooked

    • Spehmaster G.

      ..As much as all other commercial digital photographs, I reckon. Flat, lifeless, artificial..

  • Curiousmonga

    garbage lens, garbage specs, garbage sample photos…yet people still swarm towards it

    but then again it’s kickstarter ..

    • Spehmaster G.

      What makes you say it’s garbage? You’ve obviously never used it.

      It’s identical in most respects (except the ludicrous price) to the original 1960’s Lydith ie element design.. Which was, and still is, a superb lens.

      It is of course, my personal opinion, but a lens like the original Lydith (which I own) doesn’t require an excessively shallow depth of field to isolate the subject. It gives superb realism and depth.. That is the most important attributes of a lens like this.

  • “the sharpest and most contrasty lens in our […] lens portfolio”
    Which probably isn’t saying much.
    At least it’s $550 and not $5500 like some other stuff they’d announced.

    Oh, and for the record, the photos look pretty nice but it’s probably the skilled photographer’s hand that helped. I know that a good professional can milk good images from a tin can lens (sincerely yours, Captain Obvious).

  • Ande Notos

    Oh look. A 30mm lens slower than a tortoise with a hip fracture.

    • Spehmaster G.

      A shallow depth of field is very handy in very low light. However, it’s not much good for anything else.

      The original Lydith (not this gimmicky repro), is a fantastic travel/street lens.. It’s light, solidly made, tack sharp, has superb depth/contrast and colour reproduction.

      Any wide-angle lens with an aperture lower than f/2 has so many correction elements (some not even glass), producing images that are unbelievably flat, unrealistic and lifeless.

      Just my personal opinion but corner to corner sharpness is not the most important attribute in a lens.. Realism is.

      • Ande Notos

        “A shallow depth of field is handy in very low light. However, it’s not much good for anything else.”

        Not true. At all.

        • Spehmaster G.

          Fine retort. However, It is actually true..

          A shallow depth of field, ie a very fast lens, is handy in very low light.. But not much else.

          A very fast lens requires a ludicrous number of correction elements. This requirement, produces flat, lifeless image..

          A Shallow depth of field is then required to isolate a flat subject from a flat background. This ‘fake’ isolation isn’t required with a lens like the original 30mm Lydith, it has superior micro-contrast creating a 3D, realistic image.. As well as amazing tone, colour accuracy and light transmission..

          • Ande Notos

            Ι’m not sure what “flat” images you’re talking about but I’m willing to bet that the image is imperceptible and correctable. You will never get the same kind of separation shallow depth of field will give you. It’s just not the same to the eye.

          • Spehmaster G.

            A very Shallow depth of field gives the superficial illusion of separation and depth.. Superior Micro-Contrast [of lenses like the Lydith] produce an image far closer to the perception of the human eye, than a modern fast lens can ever achieve (with it’s excessive corrective elements). Flat images can be improved in post, but never corrected.. Side by side the difference in depth (3D quality) will be glaringly aparent.

            It is of course, personal preference regarding the finished image, but if realism and depth is desirable in a lens, quality vintage lenses give that in abundance.

            If you’ve never used a lens of this era on film or digital, you will have no frame of reference, and I highly recommend it.. Newer (or more expensive) isn’t necessarily better.. The Sigma Art range is a prime example.

            Happy shootin’ ☺️

          • Ande Notos

            Sounds a bit like mumbo jumbo to me. Shallow depth of field is an effect that you can’t be replaced with what you’re saying, even assuming you’re right about it. But if it’s better for you that’s great.

  • Andreas Vesper

    When I was a child back in 1974 I got my first SLR, a East-German Praktika L, equipped with a M42 Meyer-Optik Görlitz, 50 mm/f2.8, a pretty cheap lens with a fair ´performance. Nothing more and nothing less. At that time this lens was approx. 50 Deutschmarks, which would be approx. 70 USD today. Today Meyer Optik lenses just seem to be some sort of hype to me. Historically, These lenses were far away from being outstanding.

    • Spehmaster G.

      Your writing about the 50mm Domiplan, and it wasn’t great, i’m afraid.. Others, such as the the 50mm Pancolar, is in a different class altogether.

  • Spehmaster G.

    Another Kickstarter campagn.. For folk with more money than good sense.

    The 1960’s Lydith was brilliant in every way, it still is. I use it regularly on my Pentax Spotmatic [with a roll of Acros or Ektar] , and It also works just as well on my FX Digital. However, I prefer to use it with the medium it was designed for.

    I’d avoid this repro though, it’s overpriced, gimmicky and has a silly short focus throw. The original version’s focus is smooth and long enough to be accurate at close focus without ‘live view’ or ‘focus peaking’.

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