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Canon EF 35mm f/2

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Reviews Views Date of last review
130 361455 Apr 7, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
92% of reviewers $402.41
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.53
9.05
8.7
ef35mmf2_1_

Specifications:
Fast 35mm wide-angle lens. With a minimum focusing distance of only 0.8 ft. (25cm), you can approach the subject closer and still obtain a more natural wide-angle effect. You can even obtain good background blur for portraits.


 


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corgiwcn
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Registered: Apr 8, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 50
Review Date: Aug 31, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $180.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Fine optical performance and close focusing; useful focal length in a 1.6x-crop DSLR.
Cons:
Loud AF. Manual focus ring is a joke.

I bought the lens to fill the gap between my 24mm and 50mm. On a 1.6x sensor, it practically becomes a substitute for 50mm on a full-frame camera with a slightly larger DOF. This makes it very useful for me to shoot photos about street people, a task that 24mm seems too wide while 50mm too long.

This lens has a dual personality: (1) optically, it is similar to the 50mm f/1.8 II I own, and (2) the AF is similar to the 24mm f/2.8 I also own.

Like the 50mm, it is soft wide open but still useful. The improvement from f/2.0 to f/2.2 is dramatic (at least for my copy). It becomes good when reaching f/2.8 and very good on the mark of f/4.0. Colorwise, it is truthful but uninspiring. The contrast is OK but not "3D-like." Overall, the optical design seems to make it a decent street-photography lens in which accomodating all the subjects/non-subjects is primary while making colorful presentation like landscapes is not. Because it records all the details faithfully, people who are used to L-lenses like 24-70 f/2.8 may need to photoshop the resulting images.

The build is ok, like the 24mm f/2.8 but much better than the toyish 50mm f/1.8. Since this lens has a very useful focal length that makes it versatile, I really wish that it had a good USM motor that doesn't bother people in a quiet setting. The autofocus on the 300D (and possibly 10D) is not entirely satisfactory. Moreover, if you are up to the manual focus, don't bother with this lens -- it's even worse than the "dog toy" 50mm f/1.8 Mk2.


Aug 31, 2004
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Tommy Lee
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Registered: Jun 20, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 354
Review Date: Aug 25, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: On a 1.6X 6MP digital body, it has excellent Optical Quality, From F2 to F11. High Res, Low flare, High Contrast, Low distortion, Color is good.
Cons:
None, What else could one ask for less than $200.


This 35/f2 and the 50/1.8 is a must have. It is a bargain and a steal. Someone at Canon forgot to put a USM motor and a red ring around the top.



Aug 25, 2004
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mediahound
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Registered: Jul 15, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 394
Review Date: Jul 23, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $219.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Lightweight, great quality for the price.
Cons:
Very noisy autofocus

If you are going to buy a prime why not get a fast f2 (or faster) one? Personally, I don't bother with the f2.8 primes but maybe that's just me.

Anyway the 35 f2 is definitely a keeper. It's a great performer for the price and on the 10d, it has an effective focal length of 56mm which is basically normal. I have found it a great street photography/walk around lens.

My only complaint is that the autofocus is quite loud. Much louder than the 50 f1.8 MKII. I find that I shoot in manual focus mode with this lens mostly. It's fairly smooth and easy to focus and the depth of field dial is an added plus.

I think you would be hard pressed to tell any difference in sharpness between this lens an an 'L' lens.


Jul 23, 2004
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MarkSaperstein
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Registered: Sep 23, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1344
Review Date: Jun 2, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $180.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great image quality. Small and light. Inexpensive.
Cons:
Image quality drops off at the edges with film/full-frame sensor.

For the price, this is a great lens, especially on a small sensor (D60, 10D). When using film or full-frame sensor, the quality at the edges does not hold up so well. I used it as my normal lens on the 10D. Image quality is not like the "L" lenses, but it's not far behind.

Jun 2, 2004
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Z_28
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Registered: Aug 18, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1449
Review Date: Apr 9, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Extremely sharp, great contrast and colors. Fast and silent AF.
Cons:
None at this time

Great, high quality in pocket lens while walking/working with attached 70-200.
Perfect "standard" lens for digital SLRs (1D, 10D and 300D).


Apr 9, 2004
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Ray Soemarsono
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Registered: Jul 27, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 3883
Review Date: Mar 29, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Inexpensive, close to a normal lens on a 1.6x crop bodies, sharpness, close focusing.
Cons:
None

This is a sleeper lens, IMO. It's very versatile, relatively cheap, and the image produced is very sharp. Sure, there's no USM, but at this price I'm not expecting any. I love the minimum focusing distance as well (0.8 ft). A casual, unassuming lens that is as close as a normal lens for 10D/D60/D30.

Mar 29, 2004
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vince
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Registered: Mar 18, 2002
Location: China
Posts: 306
Review Date: Feb 12, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $130.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Superb optics. Corner to corner sharpness. Small, light and compact.
Cons:
Slightly slow AF.

I got this lens because I needed something between my 24 and 50 primes. I finally ended up using this lens most of the time. The optics are top notch and the f/2.0 speed is very useful. The lens focuses very close. I sometimes shoot at f/2.0 with this lens and the results are very sharp. Color rendition is quite neutral and color saturation is as good as the 50/1.8. The lens feels quite solid, and the metal lens mount and distance scale are welcome.

These days you can find this lens at low prices now that people are switching to "pro" wide Sigma zooms for their DSLR's Smile


Feb 12, 2004
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castlenut
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Registered: Jan 12, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 9
Review Date: Jan 12, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $220.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent optical quality Affordable price
Cons:
Lack of USM

I 100% agree with previous reviewer. People who give a lens rating 3 of 5 just because it does not have USM keep amazing me. Guys, are you focusing or taking pictures??? ;-) This lens is simply superb, it's excellent even wide open at f2.0. Colors, contrast and overall picture appearance are world-class. And you get all that for about $200 these days.

If some give it a rating of 3, let them name their favorite 5-rated f2.0 lens for $200 which is better.


Jan 12, 2004
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gmcfly
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Registered: May 9, 2003
Location: Brazil
Posts: 81
Review Date: Dec 23, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $240.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: very sharp, good contrast, "normal" look on 1.6 camera, close focus, inexpensive, very low (or none) distortion and SMALL.
Cons:
none.

Really like this lens for full body portraits and abstracts. ISO 1600 and f/2 is a powerful combination.

Dec 23, 2003
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dorkus
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Registered: Sep 17, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 148
Review Date: Oct 28, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $229.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: sharp, low distortion, macro-like close focusing, light and compact
Cons:
color and contrast just ok (on the level of the better mid-price zooms e.g. 24-85mm, not any better than 50/1.8), so-so build quality (but ok for the price), nosiy non-USM motor

i was really hoping this lens was for me. i actually wound up trying three copies from B&H. the first had a chip inside the rear element, the second had a hairline scratch on the front... terrible quality control. the third wound up being fine, and all three actually took good pictures on my EOS-10D. very sharp, close to my copy of the 50/1.8, but there was something about color and contrast that bothered me. with a Hoya S-HMC filter color seemed very drab; i later removed the filter and it was better but i still felt the color performance was just so-so, certainly no better than the 50/1.8 or even my Canon 24-85mm zoom. contrast was just ok as well, the response is pretty contrasty for midtones and highlights but shadow detail was not to my liking... the lens has a slightly dark look to it that tends to obscure shadow detail. it also can look a little grainy at times, i'm not sure why... i'm obviously spolied by my 135/2L, but i tend to prefer my $70 50/1.8 as well. the 35/2 comes close to the 50mm, but the results are never quite as good for me. the MF ring is not quite as useless as the one on the 50/1.8, but it's not a whole lot better either.

still, this is a good quality lens, esp. for the money asked. it's nice and light, the AF while being buzzy is pretty quick and accurate, and you can take very clear almost macro shots - i've gotten good results with subjects as close as 15cm from the front of the lens. it's also very sharp down to f/2.8, and usable at f/2.2 (wide open f/2 is soft). it will give you better results than most zooms @ 35mm, e.g. Canon 24-85mm or 28-135mm IS... the 24-70L will beat it handily in color and contrast but sharpness will be a toss-up, and of course the L is about 6x heavier and more expensive. as for myself, i'm making the step up to the 35/1.4L. i don't really need the extra speed below f/2 but the superior contrast and color of the L make it worth it to me.


Oct 28, 2003
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nutek
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Registered: Sep 7, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 672
Review Date: Sep 18, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Fast f2.0 aperture, unobstrusive and light, excellent bokeh.
Cons:
Noisy (but above average speed) AFD motor, rather soft at f2.0.

I was contemplating between the 35mm f/2 and the 28mm f/2.8 for my "walkabout" lens on the D30. Previously I used the 50mm f/1.8 on my film EOS and I was very happy with the kind of pictures that I was getting. With the 1.6x multiplier, both 28mm and 35mm primes come close to the 50mm angle of view. I eventually went for the 35mm because it gives a more natural perspective than the 28mm, which gives a wide-angle perspective (i.e. more distortion when close up) - which does not work well for me as I take a fair bit of people photos. Both are great lenses, no doubt about that, but the 35mm f/2 packs more oomph in the bokeh department as well, thus I went ahead to buy it.

I went home in summer of 2003 armed with only the 35mm f/2 and my D30: =)
http://galant-ho.com/summer03/littleindia/index.htm

Addenum: Now that I have used this lens for quite some time, I agree with some of the reviewers above. f/2.0 is pretty soft for me too, and the lens, though contrasty, doesn't have the same natural, pleasing colors as the 50mm primes. The lens color is slightly warm (though correctable in software), and shadows are rather "harsh" looking. That said, it's still a good walkaround lens though, just *slightly* not as useful for people photography as I had initially thought it out to be.


Sep 18, 2003
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Quendler
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Registered: Feb 10, 2003
Location: Germany
Posts: 18
Review Date: Aug 26, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: very sharp - even at open aperture, superb contrast, superb and natural colors, fast enough for an non-usm lens, cheap, nice bookeh, great normal lense on a 10D/D60/D30 - for me a better view angle as the 2,8/28, f/2
Cons:
Non USM? - I am happy about that - I can get a great lens for really small money :-)

I like to take this lens as normal lens - it gives me the opportunity to take great pictures - even if there is bad light, its my favorite lens for taking only cam+lens with me.
I am so happy to get a great image quality for this low price, and the build quality is o.k. for this price range.


Aug 26, 2003
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Gochugogi
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Registered: Jun 25, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 9922
Review Date: Jul 22, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $90.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Tack sharp, small, light, virtually no distortion, extremely flare resistant & inexpensive
Cons:
So inexpensive people don't take it seriously

This semi-wide lens (63 degrees) is one of my favorites and is always on one of my cameras or in my bag when I'm shooting. It's great for showing a subject in its natural environment. The EF 35 2.0 is small (42.5 mm L), light (210 g) and focuses close (25 cm). The front element does not rotate, but the lens changes slightly in length when focusing. Although it uses AFD, it focuses fast due to the small extension needed for a 35 mm lens. AFD makes a small amount of motor noise but is relatively soft compared to most non-Canon AF lenses. This lens has 52 mm filter threads and uses the clip-on EW-65 II (or EW-65) lens hood, two features it shares with the EF 28 2.8. The manual focusing ring is fairly smooth turning, but a little coarse for fine adjustments. Like the EF 24 2.8, this lens only has DOF markings for F11 and 16.

Build quality is excellent considering the price, about the same as the EF 50 1.4 USM, but it ain't no L lens. It sports DOF markings, distance scale and a metal lens mount. If you're a build snob take heart as Canon gives you the option of the EF 35 1.4L USM for $1000 more. However, my EF 35 2.0 has survived many drops, rolls and bangs since 1995 and keeps on ticking.

This lens is easy to take pictures with due to its natural perspective and ease of handling. These qualities make it an ideal "walk around" lens. I tend to "see" images most often at the 35 mm perspective. Moreover, the EF 35 2.0 is an extremely sharp lens, sharper than the 35 mm end of Canon's best zooms. With only 7 elements, there is virtually no flare, ghosting or loss of light. With its ultra fast F2.0 aperture, you can take a picture in nearly any available light situation. Finally, the fast aperture makes for bright viewfinders, a nice feature if you shoot in dark interiors or twilight.

This wonderful lens goes for only $200 new.


Jul 22, 2003
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markci
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Registered: Apr 18, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Apr 18, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Image quality, compact size
Cons:
none

There's little to complain about with this lens. Image quality is fantastic, it's nice and compact and inexpensive. Lacks USM but AF is quite fast nonetheless.

Apr 18, 2003
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Lensman99
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Registered: Dec 30, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 3
Review Date: Apr 16, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $230.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp optics. Reasonably fast, yet compact. Good handling in the field.
Cons:

This lens is one of the better values in the Canon EF prime series. Images are quite sharp, with good contrast. I find it a great lens for street photography, offering a maximum aperture of f/2, yet remaining compact in size and light in weight. Bokeh is relatively good to my tastes, but here I am spoiled by the ten-bladed apertures of my rangefinder lenses. Flare has not been a problem for me, but I habitually use the Canon matching hood. I also use it for landscapes, normally stopping down to at least f/11, and the resulting images just pop.

Build quality is acceptable. Autofocus is somewhat sluggish but not annoyingly so.

If your priority is on sharpness, you won't be disappointed. At this price/performance ratio, it deserves a spot in your camera bag.


Apr 16, 2003
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Mark Jamison
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Registered: Mar 4, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 1651
Review Date: Apr 2, 2003 Recommend? no | Price paid: $243.00 | Rating: 4 

 
Pros: Image quality really quite good.
Cons:
Abysmal Build Quality, No USM

AN Ok lens if all you shoot is in nice conditions. This is horrible build quality and doesn't have the price tag that other bad builds have (Canon 50mm F/1.8).

So the Quality to pice comparison is only usefull if you don't plan to take this out of the city, or out in the cold.


Apr 2, 2003
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Canon EF 35mm f/2

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
130 361455 Apr 7, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
92% of reviewers $402.41
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.53
9.05
8.7
ef35mmf2_1_


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