This was actually an impulse buy right before flying to New York. I’ve been hearing lots of great things about this lens so I checked out Craigslist and found one for $120 “lightly used”. They are currently going for $199 on Amazon. I also highly recommend checking out the Canon Refurbished Store. I thought this would be a perfect time to test this little lens in New York. And boy was I blown away! Especially for the price I paid!
It is pretty darn sharp! Even at 2.8! I had an easy time editing these photos. I didn’t even need to add any sharpness in lightroom. At 2.8 there is a significant amount of vignette, but can easily be fixed in lightroom. Canon really surprised me with this lens. Quality lens at a really reasonable price. Thanks Canon!
iso 4000, f/2.8, 1/125
iso 200, f/5.6, 1/3200
I tested the auto focus in New York City when the sun was hiding behind thick overcast clouds and tall buildings. I had no problem focusing as long as my focus point had enough light to read. I was able to focus on the “New Yorker” sign with no problem. It has an STM (smooth transitions for motion) motor. This lens was made for smooth/quiet focus during video recording, but it’s really nice for photos as well.
iso 2000, f/2.8, 1/80
iso 2500, f/2.8, 1/250
Build quality is amazing for the price. It’s not like an “L” lens, but it feels pretty darn good!
Size, Size, Size. I am in love with the size. Don’t get me wrong. I love my “L” lenses, but this thing… crazy compact! I use it on my Canon 5d mk III, and it’s so light. My wrists love it!
35mm mk II (favorite all around lens) vs 40mm (favorite travel lens)
In my Opinion, this is the perfect lens for travel and/or “just starting off”. The focal length is close to 35mm(my favorite), which is a win for me. A wonderful low profile/compact lens that doesn’t shout $$$$$. I wish I brought this lens to Europe! I traveled all over Europe (mostly by myself), and there were times I was scared for my camera and I. This lens is phenomenal! I also highly recommend this lens to people who want to focus more on shooting, and less focused on gear. I hope Canon makes more Pancake Lenses for Full Frame cameras. I hope this review was somewhat helpful! Feel free to contact/comment if you have any questions.
+ photos taken in new york, mexico, and hawaii