The $350 Canon Macro Lens

Hello everyone! Today’s post is all about the EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM. You may have heard that the other day, Canon came out with a $1600 Macro lens. I was actually already working on this post and thought that it would be a perfect time to post about a much less expensive lens for those wonderful close-ups!

This lens is pretty interesting in many ways, the biggest being design. In my photos below, you can see that the front of the lens has a ring light!


When doing macrophotography, you normally need to get pretty close to a subject. In doing this, you might end up casting a shadow over your subject. With this lens, you can just flip on the light, and you’ll have a solution built right into the lens! This light is not perfect, but it is convenient.

This lens also comes with a hood to cover up the light. The hood is fine, as you would expect, the only thing is that the lens cap is a bit tight when putting it over the hood. It does fit, but it seems tighter than when it is put on the lens directly.

Lens Hood

As you can see in the shot below; the lens comes with stabilization and autofocus (well talk about that more in a bit)

Lens Upright

Next, the focus distance. You can see that it is 0.14m/0.43ft. This is nice and close, maybe not the closest you can get, but certainly close enough to get awesome flower photos. (I haven’t been in a situation where I’ve needed a closer minimum focus.)

Lens Side

That is all for the design. Next I’ll talk about how it performs.


I really enjoy using this lens. Overall, it is fantastic! Below are some photos I got using this lens. πŸ™‚

For this first photo, I used my warm center filter in Polarr to get cool vignetting and a warm center. (FYI: you can get this filter by joining my free newsletter. 😁)

This next photo is another photo edited in Polarr. As you can see, I took this photo much further away and the lens still preserves the details.

The photo below is another photo of these plants (not sure what they are πŸ˜‚). This is further back, and I like that in this case, the water came out very smooth.

This next photo was taken even further away from the subject. I used the digital quick zoom to focus on that turtle near the center it is kind of hard to see, it was able to stay in focus, but this is where some details were lost. There is another turtle to the right too.

Here is one more photo. This was actually super difficult to take, because of the light. This is where this lens struggles. The photo above has a blown out sky which I couldn’t even fix in post. The photo below was fixed in post. This reminds me a lot of older phones which had two options most of the time, light and dark. Now this lens is nowhere near as bad as that, but it can be slightly annoying to get a blown out sky in a macro shot like this.


Autofocus is the number one biggest issue. Now, before the latest macro lens (came out on Wednesday 4/14/2021) there was no good autofocus system for macro lenses. This lens has mostly unusable autofocus which, doesn’t bother me since I don’t often use autofocus anyways. If you have heard about the new Canon macro lens then you will know that it has some incredible autofocus tech in it.

As I mentioned earlier, you do lose detail when further away from a subject. Also, the dynamic range is not the best.

Overall Conclusion:

Overall, I think that this is an awesome macro lens. I love how much detail you get in the close up shots and the light. You have probably been seeing photos that I’ve taken with it for quite a while now. Over this time I have had no other issues other than what I have mentioned.

Thank you so much for reading and for 40 blogs follows! Almost at 50! If you found this post useful, be sure to add a like, it really helps out a ton! Also, consider helping me get to 50 follows!


-Digital Wonders & Smiles

Published by Digital Wonders and Smiles

I am a photographer, writing a photography blog here on WordPress. I am based in the USA and take photos in my hometown. I also occasionally travel both domestically and internationally and write photoblog posts and make videos about these trips! On my blog, I cover everything from mobile photography to dslr photography to photography techniques for anyone!

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