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Canon EF 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5 USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
33 119899 Jan 30, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
79% of reviewers $248.72
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.73
8.27
7.5
ef20_35mm_1_

Specifications:
Highly portable lens with high optical performance and light weight of
12 oz. (340 g). A very practical ultra-wide-angle zoom. The large front lens group minimizes peripheral darkening, and the flare-blocking diaphragm minimizes flare. Also, with lens group 2 being the zoom group, distortion is corrected.


 


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ansvel
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Registered: Oct 18, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Review Date: Nov 21, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $240.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, good angle, very quiet. Comparable to L lenses.
Cons:
The zoom ring is a bit annoying.



Nov 21, 2005
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incdigital
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Registered: Aug 2, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 226
Review Date: Nov 16, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $275.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: USM, Good Build/Size, Sharp stopped down
Cons:
Soft wide open, Slow, Tiny MF ring, Distortion

Overall i was not that impressed with this lens. Images do need some processing in PS to get the most out of them. I also hate the MF ring on this lens. BTW if your thinking of getting this for your 1.6x DSLR...32-56mm is not a very good range for most people. Id only recomend it for FF cameras.

Nov 16, 2005
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pfogle
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Registered: Sep 10, 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 7
Review Date: Aug 29, 2005 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

Pros: small, light, USM, very good in the center, good edges at f8+. Flare well controlled.
Cons:
Not very good edges wide open. On the 1D you see quite a lot of CA and purple fringing in the corners. Barrel distortion quite high.

I got this lens not expecting much, to replace a Sigma 20/1.8 I had never liked. I thought my Sigma 15-30 was sharp till I compared it to this... it's much better at all focal lengths, and has less flare and higher contrast.

It's not the sharpest lens, but the pictures have a lovely 3D look that I hadn't even realised was missing till I saw the results from this lens. The detail in the center is just amazing, especially considering the price. Highly recommended.


Aug 29, 2005
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pfogle
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Registered: Sep 10, 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 7
Review Date: Aug 28, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Small, light, contrasty and sharp, USM
Cons:
Some Chromatic Aberration, some purple fringing in the corners on the 1Dm2. Reasonably sharp at the edges, but not brilliant. Small aperture.

Got this lens to replace a Sigma 20/1.8, which I would never use above f5.6 - this lens at 20mm beats it easily. At f8 it's very sharp over most of the field, a bit soft in the corners with the 1.3x crop factor.

It's much sharper than the Sigma 15-30, and more contrasty, through it's whole range, but particularly at the longer end. However, where this lens excels is in the drawing of the image... it has a lovely 3D feel that give a 'film-like' image on digital. I'm very impressed with this lens for the price.

Phil


Aug 28, 2005
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Non Plus Ultra
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Registered: May 12, 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 12, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: nice wide-angle range, sharp, good build quality
Cons:
not as sharp as I expected it to be at wide open.

I recently did some tests with 1:1 enlargements and found out that there is indeed a large difference in sharpness between wide-open and say, f/8. Not that it's bad. Not at all! A fine lens which is really versatile and very suitable for landscape.

May 12, 2005
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mudlake
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Registered: Nov 22, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 1564
Review Date: Mar 9, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $215.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Light, sharp
Cons:
Not as contrasty as the 17-40

I bought this lens to take the place of my 17-40L. I upgraded my tripod and ballhead and so the 17-40 had to go to help pay for it. I tested this lens against my 17-40 and found it to be almost as sharp, but not as contrasty. The 17-40L images had better color and contrast. However, I got my 20-35 for the great price of $215, and for that price this lens it fantastic!

I shoot it almost exclusively for landscapes at f/16 or smaller. At those apertures, the images out of this lens are just as sharp as those from the 17-40, but again, show slightly less contrast. This isn't a concern since I can equalize this in Photoshop. If you can find a good used one of these lenses, it is quite a lens for the money. Here's a shot from last week:

http://mudlake.smugmug.com/photos/16954640-O.jpg


Mar 9, 2005
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stephenmak
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Registered: Feb 16, 2003
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
Review Date: Feb 19, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $300.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Price, sharp, sorta wide
Cons:
Only sorta wide, slow

I bought this lens used, after looking long and hard at the 17-40L which is just a bit wider, and even slower. For the price, it's a great lens. Sharp, excellent build quality (at least my copy has a smooth smooth smooth zoom), and it looks pretty impressive with a lens hood.

On a 1.6x crop factor, it just not quite as wide as I'd like, but I knew that before I bought it. It's also a bit slow, but I also knew that before I bought it.

On the other hand, I shot back to back against a 17-40L, and found that the L wasn't sharper, or any better in terms of image quality (and I'm sure that may sound sacreligous to some of you), and for the difference in price to the L glass, I can pick up a good chunk of a 15mm fisheye. The 17-40L is slower still, so the only other viable option is thw 16-35/2.8, which is just too much money. For that kind of money, I can get the 15mm fisheye, and a 35/2.0 and a 100/2.0 and the 20-35/3.5.



Feb 19, 2005
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MikeK5117
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Registered: Dec 16, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 85
Review Date: Jan 31, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: I bought this lens used at my local camera shot, needing something on the wide end of things for my new 1D kit after having shot Canon FD for 30+ years. I wasn't expecting a lot for a wide zoom in this price range. Boy, have I been surprised. This lens is well built, relatively bright, good contrast, and at least on my 1.3 crop factor 1D body it doesn't exhibit near as much barrel distortion as some others have reported. It's not a 16-35mm L lens but will sure fill the gap until I get some money to spend at that end of the range.
Cons:



Jan 31, 2005
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johsch
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Registered: Oct 1, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 27
Review Date: Oct 28, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp photos throughout it's range, Fast autofocus.
Cons:
Slight barrel distortion and some minor CA.

I picked up this lens on ebay and I am quite impressed with it on my 20D. I really have nothing bad to say about this lens. It's sharper than my 28-105 f3.5 USM with good contrast and very little flare. I keep this lens on my camera most of the time. Great lens.

Oct 28, 2004
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Newk
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Registered: Apr 23, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1356
Review Date: Oct 15, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Inexpensive, light-weight, sharp. Overall a very nice little ultrawide zoom.
Cons:
Not very wide on a 1.6x crop digital.

I've been using this lens for several years, first on film bodies and now on 1D & 1DII. It's been a solid performer, but with the 1.3x crop factor of the 1D it often leaves me wanting something wider. The f3.5-4.5 aperture is a little slow, but not very restrictive for me. If $300-$400 is your budget for a wide lens and 20-35 is wide enough, I don't think you can find better. As consumer-priced wide zooms go, this one is excellent.

Oct 15, 2004
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8bit Barry
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Registered: Jun 27, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 7
Review Date: Jun 27, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: All of it! Fantastic quality when stopped down, sharp and great colours
Cons:
None

Top lens, fantastic to use, light and get great results with a tripod stopped down. If you are a walk around f2.8 L sort of person then softness could be a problem, but at this price it is a worthy competitor to the 17-40 (which you disagree with me on). All I have had is great results from this lens and at half the price of it's L series brother, at f11 to 16 there will be very little in it. Save your money and by this lens.

For some pictorial examples look at any wide angle shots at www.loona.eclipse.co.uk.



Jun 27, 2004
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Hurtman
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Registered: Jan 7, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 4
Review Date: Jan 11, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Very lightweight - Great on Film cameras
Cons:
If lens hood is NOT on correctly, it will vignette, but you will see it in the viewfinder

I recently switched from the FD system to the EOS starting with the EOS-3, 50mm 1.8 & a 28-135 IS, which is still my #1 lens! I later added the 75-300mm IS & traded some of my FD equipment for the 20-35. Then came the Elan 7 & now the 300D/Digital Rebel.
This lens normally stays on my EOS-3 & I Love it! I use it sometimes on my 300D, but I should use a tripod more with it, as with age I am not a steady as I used to be. If I get a 17-40mm I WILL keep this lens. Super for shooting scenics on slides. Yes, I do still shoot film.


Jan 11, 2004
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Michael Gomez
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Registered: Aug 14, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 14
Review Date: Jan 2, 2004 Recommend? no | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: never really happy with it.
Cons:
noy sharp

I may have a bad lens and have used it for a few years waiting to get something better. Then I tried the Tamaron 19-35 and liked it better. It seems much sharper on the edges.

Jan 2, 2004
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MitchellT
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Registered: Sep 20, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 167
Review Date: Dec 28, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Small, light, fast, quiet
Cons:
Large filter (77mm) size makes certain filters quite expensive.

I have owned the comparable Tamron 19-35 Canon EF mount and enjoyed it. This lens is much nicer than the Tamron, with a better build quality and much improved focus speed and capability when paired with the Canon D30 (which is a weak focusing camera in less-than optimal conditions). This lens "hunts" for focus much less than my other Canon and non-Canon lenses and I believe my D30 is "improved" by using this lens. I theorize that the improvement can be attributed to the USM.

Dec 28, 2003
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Mr645
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Registered: Jun 7, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 1303
Review Date: Jun 9, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Well built and sharp for the money. Silent focus
Cons:
Barrel distortion. newner lenses have better flair control

Same level of lens as the 28-105 USM or 28-135, 24-85, 100-300 etc. The only thing I can say negative abut this lens is the barrel distortion. I bought this lens to do interiors for one specific client. After years of 4x5 shooting he says he found a photographer to do the work for 1/2 the price. Turns out that the 'new' photog is using 35mm, not 4x5 so I agree to shoot 35mm for less then 4x5 which is fine. But this lens distorts too much for this type of use.

Jun 9, 2003
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coffeeshakes
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Registered: Mar 12, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 538
Review Date: Apr 6, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $225.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Sharp stopped down, lightweight, good flare control for an inexpensive ultrawide zoom
Cons:
Build quality = Injection molded hell, Slow, limited range.

I am using this lens on a 10D and am not too impressed. This mostly has to do with the crop factor, making a fairly dull, slow 32-55 with mediocre performance wide open. This is a range where I am used to using fast primes, and I feel very limited with the slow speed.

Stopped down on a tripod the lens is pretty nice. For a film camera this would probably make a great inexpensive landscape wide lens. Flare seems well controlled.


Apr 6, 2003
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Canon EF 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5 USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
33 119899 Jan 30, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
79% of reviewers $248.72
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.73
8.27
7.5
ef20_35mm_1_


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