Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM Review

General information

This is a prime lens manufactured by Canon and the lens was released 2012.
The lens belongs to the category wide angle prime lenses, a wide angle lens where you do not have the possibility to zoom in and out.

Product description from Canon

At launch 2012 Canon wrote this regarding Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM:

"A modern day update to a versatile, compact and lightweight wide-angle lens, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM is incredibly bright and offers image stabilization, superb image quality and construction perfect for use on any EOS digital camera. With a redesigned mechanical and optical structure, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM features a GMo aspherical lens element for high image quality with improved performance in the periphery. It incorporates a rear focus system and ring-type USM for faster, more precise autofocus performance. Full-time manual focus enables manual focusing while in AF mode, a micro-stepping drive provides quieter operation and a low speed focus drive delivers optimal results for video shooting. Canon Optical Image Stabilizer system delivers the equivalent effect of 4 stops and can detect normal shooting or panning, and automatically switches to the optimal IS mode. Compact and lightweight, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM has an 8-blade circular aperture diaphragm for soft backgrounds, a minimum focusing distance of 0.79 ft./0.24m, plus optimized lens coatings for minimized ghosting and flare.

A fast 35mm prime lens for photographers shooting hand held in low light

A 35mm prime lens with a four-stop Image Stabilizer and f/2 maximum aperture ideal for low-light photography. Ultrasonic AF is fast and accurate. An aspherical lens element boosts image quality.

Benefits

Up to four stops of image stablisation
Fast f/2 maximum aperture
Ultrasonic AF for quick and accurate focusing
Compact, lightweight design
Eight-bladed aperture for smooth bokeh
Moulded glass elements for consistent sharpness
0.24m minimum focus distance


Detailed Features

A natural wide-angle view
Offering a natural perspective and a wider angle of view, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM is a good alternative standard lens to a traditional 50mm optic when used on a full-frame DSLR. On EOS cameras with APS-C sized sensors it gives an angle of view similar to a 56mm lens.

Image stabilisation for low-light shooting
Shoot hand held in low-light conditions using shutter speeds that are up to four stops slower than usually recommended. Image Stabilizer (IS) technology detects automatically when a photographer is panning to follow moving objects and switches off stablisation in this direction.

Large f/2 maximum aperture
Shooting with apertures as wide as f/2 enables photographers to work with shallow depth of field. Enjoy a bright viewfinder image and use relatively fast shutter speeds even in dim conditions.

Advanced autofocus
Enjoy fast, near-silent autofocus thanks to a ring-type ultrasonic AF motor. Stay in control with full-time manual focus override.

Sophisticated optical design
An aspherical lens element maximises image quality while a eight-bladed aperture diaphragm delivers smooth, out-of-focus bokeh. The EF 35mm f/2 IS USM focuses down to 0.24m, letting you get close to your subjects.

Compact design
Small enough to always warrant a place in your bag, the EF 35mm f/2 IS USM is perfect for reportage and street photography."


Compatibility, autofocus and focal length

This lens is constructed to fit all models of Canon cameras, regardless of camera model or type of sensor.

The ability to use autofocus is available for all cameras.

The lens has a focal length of 35 mm. Depending on which camera the lens is used, the experienced and perceived focal length will be different. Please visit the list of compatible cameras below, it will provide the equivalent focal length you get on each camera.

Lens brightness and image stabilizer

The lens brightness and aperture value is f/2.

This aperture value indicates that the lens is extremely bright.  This will make it so much easier shooting in darker environments where you do not want or can use flash lighting, for example in churches or at different sports venues.

Inside the lens there is an image stabilizer, which helps to fend off possible movements and tremors. This is very positive and can be of great help in situations and conditions where the light is inadequate and not enough for decent shutter speeds.

Filter and Lens Hood

The lens has a traditional filter thread on the front and its measuring 67 mm which also the filter you will use must have. If you use for example an UV filter can be a cheap insurance against scratches and dust.

There is a lens hood that fits the lens (model name "EW-72") but unfortunately this is something that is not included when purchasing the lens and must be ordered and bought separately, as an accessory.

Pictures (product and sample images)

In order to see larger product images of the lens, click the link below.

Besides looking at product images it is also of interest to see pictures taken with this specific lens. This can give you a hint of what kind of images this lens can achieve, what the focal length will be like etc.

Things to consider before buying

Below you will find some summarized points and facts that can be considered as the 'pros and cons' of this lens. These are based entirely on the facts and values that are accessible through the lens specification, so we highly recommend that you also read the reported reviews available (see tab 'Reviews'); this in order to get a more complete view of the lens and its capabilities. Reviewer opinions reflect the lens, its use and its optical performance in a more accurate way, but any way - here a few different points to consider before buying this lens.

  • The lens brightness, f/2
  • Has a built-in image stabilizer
  • Works on all sensor types
  • Light weight (335 gr)
  • No lens hood is included
  • The lens is not sealed against moisture and dust

Our Review Ratings

Time to grade Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM.

Build Quality     
Image Quality     
Autofocus     
Sharpness     
Versatility     
Value     
Overall rating 3 of 5

Best deals on Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM

Make sure to check out our price information page for best offers on this lens.

Pictures (product and sample images)

In order to see larger product images of the lens, click the link below.

Besides looking at product images it is also of interest to see pictures taken with this specific lens. This can give you a hint of what kind of images this lens can achieve, what the focal length will be like etc.