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Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
222 501280 May 8, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $1,189.88
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.34
8.21
9.5
ef_35_14_1_

Specifications:
L-series professional f/1.4 wide-angle lens with an aspherical lens element to correct aberrations. The floating system enables high picture quality to be obtained over the entire focusing range. Autofocusing is quick and quiet with rear focusing and ring USM. Full-time manual focusing is also possible.

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture: 35mm 1:1.4
Lens Construction: 11 elements in 9 groups
Diagonal Angle of View: 63
Focus Adjustment: Rear focusing system with USM
Closest Focusing Distance: 0.3m / 1 ft.
Filter Size: 72mm
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight: 3.1" x 3.4", 20.5 oz. / 79.0 x 86.0mm, 580g


 


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berkant
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Registered: Mar 30, 2005
Location: Turkey
Posts: 41
Review Date: Nov 29, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,300.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: VERY SHARP PICTURES nice built
Cons:
f1.4 pictures not so sharp expensive.



Nov 29, 2008
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Breitling65
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Registered: May 31, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 5256
Review Date: Nov 21, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Greate colors/contrast as any L's, pretty sharp wide open, quick AF, small size.
Cons:
Focus is of on MKIII, requared max micro adjustment, same lens OK on older bodies.

This lens somehow doesn't give me consistant IQ on different bodies. It happened only with this lens out of other 11 L's I own and only on mk III. However lens been superb on 20D/XTi/40D/5D I owned before, not sure what happened but it is really upsetting. Someone said on FM that this is known issue of this lens and bodies with MA and 35L might be replaced with mk II in 2009. Also I tried MA on mk III and still can't get what I like even with max settings.

Nov 21, 2008
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pauelv
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Registered: Sep 11, 2008
Location: Norway
Posts: 110
Review Date: Oct 15, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sweet bookeh, f1.4, nice color/contrast and sharpness!
Cons:
Build quality isn't as good as other L's but still solid. Paid pretty much for a used one (but I live in Norway). So the lens is quite expensive.

The build quality could be better for this price. Therefor It doesn't score 10 in my book.

However, there are no complaints in regards to the images it produces and the possibilities you get with a fast prime.


Oct 15, 2008
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terminator
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Registered: Jan 28, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 279
Review Date: Oct 11, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $750.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp from f/1.4, amazing bokeh, color, and everything about image quality
Cons:
build quality not as good as other L such as 85, no weather seal, focus can be tricky

Get this lens second hand. Everything positive about the image quality of this lens is proven true. My copy is sharp from f/1.4 - if I focus correctly of course. Bokeh is amazingly smooth. I used to expect such bokeh from only telephoto lens.

I find that focusing of this lens is very tricky. Of course, thin DOF contribute to this issue. But there's something unusual about this lens. Often it focuses at somewhere that I never understand, and produces complete blur images.


Oct 11, 2008
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Michael Watt
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Registered: Jan 21, 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 7, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,200.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: 1.4 Aperture, Sharp, bokeh (circle of confusion)
Cons:
Quality control : one should not expect focusing problems with a band new L lens, price

In light of all the positive reviews this lens has received I was disappointed to discover my copy had focusing errors. After paying top dollar one should not encounter focusing problems with an L lens. Sadly this was my experience.

However after this lens was calibrated and returned from Canon I can now join the chorus of praise for this optic. What you pay for is 1.4 to 2.8 apertures as this focal length is covered repeatedly by other canon zooms i.e. 24-70 F2,8, 24-105 L F4,ect. This lens offers the unique feature of combining a wide angle lens (on a 1:1 sensor) with a fast aperture. This enables the photographer to capture subject matter against a wide bokeh (circle of confusion) background. The ability of this moderate wide angle lens to separate a foreground subject from the background is a feature of this lens. Bokeh is not normally a strong characteristic of a wide angle lens. Although the bokeh is not as prominent as using a longer focal length, it is still pleasing and adds, if desired, a separation with the background (or foreground) without confusing the background recognition.

After calibration I was able fully appreciate the sharpness of this lens. Even wide open at 1.4 this lens is sharp although care has to be taken when focusing especially in low light. This is a highly recommended optic for low light work and environmental portrait studies.


Sep 7, 2008
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KPBara
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Registered: Jun 14, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 139
Review Date: Aug 29, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,080.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp wide open across the frame, fast and accurate focus, solid build
Cons:
CA wide open, no weather seal

The 24-105L was my most used lens for two years but I have hardly touched it since I got the 35L three months ago. Not surprisingly this lens is sharp in the center wide open, but surprisingly sharpness is uniform across the frame except extreme borders. This alone makes it stand out among fast wide angle lenses, excelling over a new design like the Sigma 30, even 10 years after first release. Focus is fast, silent, and sure. The 35L has a great feel: smooth focus ring, solid construction, great proportion on a medium-sized SLR, and beautiful front element. Drawbacks include CA wide open, lack of weather seal, and 'plastic' finish compared to, say, the 135L. The 135L may be my best built, best performing lens, but the 35L is by far the most fun.

Aug 29, 2008
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dimitris77
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Registered: Aug 28, 2005
Location: N/A
Posts: 535
Review Date: Aug 27, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,050.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, color, bokeh.
Cons:
Size & price.

This is a great lens and must have from the Canon lineup. Makes zooms seem so dull. The results that I get from it on my 20D are nothing close to anything I have seen from another lens. Fast focusing I can't wait to use it on FF when prices go down a bit.

I have bigger lenses (call me 85L) but its amazing how Canon manages to always have the biggest lenses available among other brands. Don't know how it will behave on FF but I am still hoping.


Aug 27, 2008
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abam
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Registered: Apr 25, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 4201
Review Date: Aug 11, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,080.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: build quality, sharpness from F2.0 on up, bokeh at F1.4
Cons:
price a bit high for an aging lens that is due for an update, soft at F1.4, small amount of play in the focusing ring

this lens is very well built, although it has a slight bit of play in the focusing ring. it is also very sharp, as long as you keep it above F2.0. the bokeh is delicious, but not really much different than a F1.8 lens.

additionally, this is a 12 year old design, is soft at 1.4, and as such should be around $800 for what it offers.

is it worth over 3 times what the 2.0 version is? if you need the build quality, sure. if you're not going into battle with this lens, then the 2.0 would probably fit the bill as well.

will i keep it, though? certainly.


Aug 11, 2008
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Xibalban
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Registered: Dec 1, 2005
Location: Finland
Posts: 109
Review Date: Aug 11, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: image quality
Cons:
big, heavy, feels cheap

Its amazing how cheap this lens feels. Except for the lens mount, its completely made out of plastic although I hope at least the lenses are real glass. Its like something from a $20 toy camera. For the price I would have hoped a more quality feel to it. It is also very big and heavy.

The image quality however is very good and thats of course the most important part. Take a look at my pictures with it (mostly taken wide open):

http://markuspuustinen.com/galleriat/08/08/pictures_from_kvarken_archipelago_part1/
http://markuspuustinen.com/index.php?x=browse&category=37


Aug 11, 2008
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LeoJan
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Registered: May 26, 2006
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 10, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: L build, Useble right open. Very Sharp and beautiful color.
Cons:
Some purple fringing sometimes, diappears above F2.0. Easy to correct. A little barrel, but still, you have to correct it.

Not a barging, but the quality stay's long after the price is forgotten. In comparising with the money you lose on bying a DSLR, it's an investment.

On my 1.3 crop the 35 mm is very nice, on a FF is must be even nicer.

The results you have to see to beleve, F2.8 is s beautiful.

I own the lens for 2 day's now and I love it already.


Aug 10, 2008
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tellingthm
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Registered: Jan 26, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 346
Review Date: Jul 12, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $950.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: 100% usability at f/1.4 just opens up a whole new world of possibilities
Cons:
it's too bad physics won't allow this lens to be smaller. an L should be weather-sealed, but it doesn't really matter cause my 5d isn't weather-sealed either.

first off, in the interest of full disclosure, i'll state that i'm a prime shooter. that said, shortly after purchasing this lens, i sold my other lenses (24-70L, 28/1.8, 50/1.4). that was over 6 months ago, and the 35L is still the only lens i own. paired with my 5d, the 35 allows me to capture whatever i see, exactly as i see it, in ANY situation; the combination of 35mm, f/1.4, and (5d's) iso 3200 allow for shooting in the darkest of situations, as i can comfortably handhold at 1/30th, and- if i'm careful- 1/10th, although subject motion can make that a moot point. although you won't be able to make the background disappear like you can with a telephoto unless you're subject is close to you (because of the 35mm focal length), it's plenty easy to blur everything but your subject- which is reliably sharp with this lens.
i've owned every L 2.8 zoom and every USM non-L prime, and nothing compares to the 35L. when i get a longer lens in the near-future, it'll either be an 85L or 135L; i've just grown too accustomed to (and spoiled by!) L prime IQ.


Jul 12, 2008
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philber
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Registered: May 20, 2008
Location: France
Posts: 8333
Review Date: Jun 22, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Perfect portrait lens on my 40D. Great rendition of even very subtle color shadings and contrasts.
Cons:
Nothing

Out of my 6 Canon primes, this one is second best only to my 135L 2.0. Compared to it, its ability to record color is equivalent, and outstanding, but it lacks just a little edge. When reality is rough, the 35L softens it ever so slightly IMHO. But it is very slight, and goes to making the shots more beautiful than real. So who's complaining?
Highly recommended.


Jun 22, 2008
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banditlj
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Registered: Dec 29, 2007
Location: China
Posts: 74
Review Date: Apr 29, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,235.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: I's so sharp at f1.4.the colour is so rich.the boken is so lovely and in room,it's so useful
Cons:
CA is the most poor in my lens lines you pay 1000$ for a plastic lens!

It's my lens

Apr 29, 2008
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dgenx24
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Registered: Jan 29, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 737
Review Date: Apr 15, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,119.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, nice blur, small & light
Cons:
plastic feel

I just bought this yesterday,..
i'm having so much fun with it right out of the box..
to me, this lens is alot easier to use than 85L..
lighter and more compact too..
only one thing that I don't like it about is the plastic feel...


Apr 15, 2008
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poodlelvr
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Registered: Aug 25, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 513
Review Date: Apr 10, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Stunning rich, deep color. Fast, sharp, my favorite lens.
Cons:
None

Although I primarily have L lens, when I bought my 5D I decided to try this lens. She stays on the camera 95% of the time. Another person who wishes she had bought this lens long ago; moving to primes on the basis of this lens alone. I also have 135L, which I love, but this is better. Just buy it.

Apr 10, 2008
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Henry Goh
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Registered: Sep 23, 2004
Location: Singapore
Posts: 91
Review Date: Apr 7, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,220.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp at f/1.4 with buttery OOF areas. By shooting wide open, it gives me a unique look that is not possible with my other lenses. I really like the look and am currently wondering if I can expand this to the 24mm f/1.4L lens too.
Cons:
None really

I wish I had bought this lens earlier. Since I also have the 85mm f/1.2 II, I plan to now buy the 24mm f/1.4 and the 14mm f/2.8. On the 1Ds MKIII where I can use micro-adjustment to get the sharpest focus, these lenses together with the 35mm L are worth the money.

Apr 7, 2008
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Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
222 501280 May 8, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $1,189.88
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.34
8.21
9.5
ef_35_14_1_


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