Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM Review

The Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens is a prime lens that was meant to be used with the mirrorless cameras that are part of the Canon EOS R line. It combines the wide-angle view of a standard lens with the fast aperture and close-up capabilities of a macro lens, which makes it excellent for a diverse variety of photographic applications, such as landscapes, portraits, and macro pictures.

This lens is a member of Canon’s RF lens family, which was developed exclusively for the EOS R system and offers superior picture quality and performance. In order to present a complete picture of the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens, we are going to go into the many different facets of this lens here in this post.

Key Specs

  • Focal Length: 35mm
  • Maximum Aperture: f/1.8
  • Lens Construction: 11 elements in 9 groups
  • Diagonal Angle of View: 63°00
  • Focus Adjustment: AF with full-time manual
  • Closest Focusing Distance: 0.56 ft. / 0.17m
  • Filter Size: 52mm
  • Max. Diameter x Length: Φ2.93 x 2.47 in.
  • Weight: Approx. 10.8 oz. / 305g


Impressive performance is provided by the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens in a variety of shooting scenarios. It performs exceptionally well in low-light conditions thanks to its wide-open F1.8 aperture, which enables faster shutter speeds and minimizes the requirement for high ISO settings.

Additionally, the lens incorporates a 5-stop optical image stabilization technology, which helps to reduce the effects of camera shake and enables clearer handheld photography, particularly in difficult lighting settings. You’ll have no trouble capturing ephemeral moments thanks to the RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens’s lightning-quick and precise autofocus mechanism, which offers dependable subject tracking as well as rapid focusing.

Autofocus System

The autofocus technology of the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens is designed to give an accurate and speedy focusing performance. The stepping motor (STM) technology that it contains offers a smooth and silent focusing operation, which makes it perfect for both still photography and video recording.

Your subjects will always be crisp and distinct thanks to the focusing system’s speed and precision, which you can rely on. Whether you’re shooting moving objects or recording video footage, the focusing feature of this lens enables you to capture the moment with confidence and ease, no matter what medium you’re working in.

Vibration Reduction

The optical image stabilization (IS) technology of the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens has a maximum of 5 stops of correction. While photographing in low-light circumstances or while utilizing slower shutter speeds, this function is very helpful. It helps the photographer capture more of the scene.

The image stabilization feature counteracts the effects of camera wobble, resulting in photos that are clearer and lowering the possibility of blurring brought on by hand motions. It doesn’t matter if you’re hand-holding your camera to take portraits, moving in for a close-up macro photo, or recording a video; the built-in image stabilization of this lens will ensure that both your still images and moving footage are clear and stable.

Build Quality

The Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens has a sturdy build quality with a design that is both robust and lightweight, making it an ideal lens for macro photography. The lens barrel is constructed out of high-quality materials, giving it a feel that is both sturdy and dependable in hand. In addition, the lens mount is expertly made, which guarantees a safe and reliable attachment to the camera body.

Because it is built to resist the rigors of everyday usage, the lens is well-suited for photographers who routinely shoot in a variety of settings and circumstances. When shooting outside, you won’t have to worry about the effects of dust and moisture thanks to the design of this item, which has been weather-sealed.

Handling and Ergonomics

The Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens was developed with great ergonomics and user-friendliness in mind during the design process. Due to the fact that it has a form factor that is both tiny and lightweight, it is simple to carry and manage even for lengthy periods of shooting.

The lens has a manual focus ring and a control ring that can be customized. This gives you the ability to alter settings or assign certain tasks to the control ring, which results in a more individualized experience when shooting. The positioning of the control rings, as well as their surface texture, have been thoughtfully developed for easy and pleasant use. This makes it possible to gain access to crucial features more quickly when shooting.

Image Stabilization

A powerful optical image stabilization (IS) mechanism with five stops of compensation is integrated into the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens. Even in difficult shooting settings, handheld photos may be significantly crisper thanks to its image stabilization, which eliminates blur caused by camera shake.

The image stabilization of this lens assures that your photographs will stay clear and unmarred by blur produced by unintended hand movements even when you are shooting in low-light conditions, employing slower shutter speeds, or getting up close and personal with your macro photography. It is a useful feature for photographers who frequently take pictures without the assistance of a tripod or in conditions where the use of a tripod would not be practical.

Shooting Experience

The Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens provides an extremely enjoyable and fulfilling shooting experience overall. The lens has a focal length of 35 millimeters, which makes it suitable for a broad variety of photographic styles and applications. The lens provides a natural perspective and a broad field of view, which are both beneficial whether you’re photographing landscapes, environmental portraiture, or close-up details.

You will have greater creative versatility in a variety of lighting circumstances because to the brilliant F1.8 aperture, which enables superb control over the depth of field as well as performance in low light. The lens’s macro capacity allows you to catch detailed details with its 0.5x magnification, making it excellent for capturing small subjects and exploring the world of macro photography. Because of this, the lens may be used to explore the world of macro photography.

Image Quality

Impressive image quality can be obtained with the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens over the entirety of its aperture range. Its huge maximum aperture of F1.8 allows it to generate photographs with a narrow depth of focus and gorgeous bokeh. This creates a nice distinction between the subject and the background in the photograph.

Even at wider apertures, the lens maintains a great level of sharpness, which enables you to capture minute details with a high degree of accuracy. It also exhibits low levels of distortion and chromatic aberration, which leads to pictures that have a high degree of fidelity and colors that are true to life. The Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens provides consistently excellent image quality, regardless of whether you are shooting landscapes, portraits, or macro subjects.

Teleconverter Compatibility

Due to the lack of a removable front element, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens cannot be used in conjunction with teleconverters in a manner that is considered direct compatible. Teleconverters are often utilized to lengthen the focal length of a lens, so offering an additional degree of reach for subjects that are situated at a greater distance.

Teleconverters, on the other hand, are not compatible with this lens since it has a front element that is permanently fixed. If you need a longer focal length for your photography, one option you have is to use a suitable telephoto lens from Canon’s RF lens family. This lineup offers a variety of focal lengths to accommodate various shooting conditions. If you are interested in this option, read on.

Comparison with Competitors

When contrasted with other lenses in its class, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens stands out because to its remarkable picture quality, adaptable focal length, and superb macro capabilities. When compared to other 35mm lenses on the market, this particular lens’s bright aperture of F1.8 enables it to perform better in low-light conditions.

The image stabilization mechanism of the lens gives a considerable benefit, allowing for crisper handheld images, particularly in lighting circumstances that are difficult to work with. In addition, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens features a macro function that provides a magnification of 0.5x. This makes it possible to take close-up photographs of small subjects, which may not be possible with other 35mm lenses.


Focal Length & Maximum Aperture35mm f/1.8
Lens Construction11 elements in 9 groups
Diagonal Angle of View63°00
Focus AdjustmentAF with full-time manual
Closest Focusing Distance0.56 ft. / 0.17m
Filter Size52mm
Max. Diameter x Length, WeightΦ2.93 x 2.47 in., approx. 10.8 oz. / Φ74.4 x 62.8mm, approx. 305g

Pros and Cons

Photographers may benefit from using the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens in a number of different ways. Because of its adaptable focal length of 35 millimeters, it is appropriate for a broad variety of photographic applications, from landscapes to portraiture. The lens’s quick aperture of F1.8 enables exceptional performance in low-light conditions as well as creative control over the depth of focus.

Both the built-in image stabilization and the macro feature provide versatility to the camera, allowing you to capture more delicate details and ensuring that handheld photos are clearer. Unfortunately, the lens is not directly compatible with teleconverters, which severely limits its ability to reach targets that are further away. In addition, some photographers may find that their unique requirements call for a lens with a focal length that is either broader or more limited, which may need them to examine alternatives from Canon’s RF portfolio.

Price and Availability

It is possible to get the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens at a price that is reasonable, which makes it an appealing choice for photographers who are looking for a prime lens that is of good quality but does not exceed their budgetary constraints. The lens may be purchased at a wide variety of locations, including authorized Canon dealers as well as internet markets.

Because its popularity and demand may vary from place to region, it is recommended that you check the availability and cost of it in your area. It is advisable, before to making any purchase, to perform a price comparison among several sources and to take into account any ongoing specials or packages that may give additional value for the money that you have invested.


In conclusion, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens is a prime lens that is both adaptable and high-performing. It provides good picture quality, a wide maximum aperture, and the ability to focus in on objects that are quite near to the camera. Its ergonomics and user-friendliness, together with its small size and light weight, make it an excellent companion for both amateurs and pros in the field. The autofocus technology of the lens allows for quick and precise focusing and the built-in image stabilization guarantees that handheld photos are sharper than they would otherwise be.

Because of its ability to focus very closely on objects and its relatively wide focal length, this lens opens up a wide range of creative options for photographers, enabling them to capture a wide variety of scenes with remarkable detail and clarity. When taken as a whole, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens is a tempting option for photographers who are interested in purchasing a prime lens for their Canon EOS R series mirrorless cameras that is both flexible and economical.

Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM FAQs

Q. Is the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens suitable for low-light photography?
A. Yes, the lens features a wide maximum aperture of f/1.8, which allows for excellent low-light performance. It enables you to capture images with faster shutter speeds and reduces the need for high ISO settings, resulting in well-exposed shots even in challenging lighting conditions.
Q. Can the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens be used for macro photography?
A. Absolutely! The lens has a closest focusing distance of 0.56 ft. / 0.17m, which allows you to get up close to your subjects. With its 0.5x magnification, you can capture detailed macro shots, making it a versatile lens for close-up photography of small subjects and intricate details.
Q. Does the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens have image stabilization?
A. Yes, the lens is equipped with a 5-stop optical image stabilization (IS) system. This feature compensates for camera shake, allowing for sharper handheld shots. It is particularly useful in situations where using a tripod is not possible or when shooting in low-light conditions.
Q. Can the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens be used with Canon’s RF teleconverters?
A. No, the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens is not directly compatible with teleconverters. Its fixed front element design does not allow for the attachment of teleconverters. If you require a longer focal length, you may consider using a compatible telephoto lens from Canon’s RF lens lineup.
Q. What is the filter size of the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM lens?
A. The lens has a filter size of 52mm. This means you can attach 52mm diameter filters, such as UV filters or circular polarizers, to the lens to enhance your photography and protect the front element from dust and scratches.


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