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The Pentona is a viewfinder camera for 35mm film. It was developed by Zeiss Ikon and produced first by KW and later Pentacon.[1]

The black coated parts of the camera's body and the bottom are one part which has to be removed for film load. Thumb wheels (knurls) on top and bottom serve as film advance/rewind controls. Other elements on the top are the flash shoe, the shutter release and the exposure counter. The viewfinder is a reverse-Galilean type. The metal surround of this has two tooth-like pointers near the top, which are parallax-correction guides for use at close focus.

In the middle of the bottom is a second thumb wheel, the camera lock. Another element on the bottom is a tripod screw thread. The most characteristic part of this camera model is the metal front part of the body, in which the lens tube is mounted. Nearest to that part is the aperture control ring. The middle of the lens tube is the speed setting thumb wheel. In front of that part the tube is narrowed towards the inner part of the lens tube. This inner tube with engraved distance scale which turns for focusing.


or Prestor RVS shutter with speeds 1 sec. to 1/500 sec. plus B

  • Aperture: 1:3.5 to 1:22
  • Viewfinder: optical
  • Film advance: knurl, advancing unlocks shutter for next exposure
  • Dimensions: 125 × 84 × 67 mm

Model II

The Pentona II was introduced in 1963[2] and is properly a Pentacon model. It has a much bigger viewfinder than the first model; McKeown states that this has a bright-line frame, which must be of the albada type. The camera has a film advance lever instead of a knob. The front bodywork is much simpler than the characteristic shaped front of the earlier model.


  1. The two examples of the first model pictured here clearly have the KW logo on the front of the body. McKeown lists it as a Pentacon model (mentioning only the Priomat shutter) and shows examples of the first and second models stamped with the Pentacon 'tower' logo. KW became part of the merged organisation VEB Kamera- und Kino-Werke Dresden in 1959 (which was renamed Pentacon in 1964) according to the company history at Dresdener Kameras, so only the later production of the first model was under the Pentacon name.
  2. McKeown, James M. and Joan C. McKeown's Price Guide to Antique and Classic Cameras, 12th Edition, 2005-2006. USA, Centennial Photo Service, 2004. ISBN 0-931838-40-1 (hardcover). ISBN 0-931838-41-X (softcover). p776.