10 out of 10 points and recommendedSharp, Contrast, BuildPrice
Best Uses : Street, Event, Low lightreviewed January 24th, 2011 (purchased for $1,799)
I have read people complain in forums that this lens is inferior to the 24mm AF/S. The perspective between the 24 & 35 are vastly different. It's not a matter of which is sharper, more important is which perspective is needed/preferred.
Many are quick to judge this lens because Nikon did not use ED glass ala 24mm and only uses one aspherical element. These are special glass elements reserved for overcoming difficult obstacles in extreme lens designs. Which a fast 35mm is not that extreme, these elements do not automatically make a good lens great, if it were that easy then every lens manufacture would just pop one or two ED elements and walla!
1.) This lens is Sharp! I do not know if the first batches had difficulties or if these people did not micro adjust AF on camera body, but my copy is razor sharp. Compared it to 17-35mm, 24mm 1.4, 35mm 1.4 ais, 24-70mm 2.8, 50mm AFS 1.4. At F/1.4 the 24mm AFS appears a tad sharper (center only). Stopping it down 1/3 stop (1.6), yes just 1/3 makes it sharper from that point forward than all of the lenses tested.
2.) Vignetting is well controlled, better than 24mm & 50mm 1.4's at same F/Stop
3.) Excellent flare resistance, if not that I do not intend to use a protection filter, I would probably not use the hood.
4.) No AF adjustment needed on D700 (YMMV)
5.) Sharpness in corners from 1.4-2.0 is very good, 2.8 and above is excellent
2.) 67mm filter thread
3.) Barrel distortion a little high (No Adobe LR3 or ACR Lens Profile)
1.) AF speed is not blazing fast, but still good
If you are a hobbyist and want a fast lens to capture your rugrats, get the 50mm 1.4 and save a bundle. If you are a Pro and need help deciding between this and a 24mm, then maybe you are not as Pro as you might think. You should know which you need and not go to forums asking people for their advice. You will either need the 24mm, 35mm, or both, but only you can answer that.
8 out of 10 points and recommendedIt does most everything well to very well, just nothing spectacular.Price,Distortion at 24mm, CAs in borders 24mm-60mm
Pros:reviewed January 28th, 2011 (purchased for $1,699)
Good overall image quality. (35mm 1.5 AF/S and 70-200mm VR II kill this in overlapping focal lengths.)
Vignetting is well controlled F/4 and smaller
High quality materials (build)
AF speed is fast!
Distortion at 24mm
Large (Scares people)
CAs in borders 24mm-60mm (middle of road performer)
Not my favorite lens, but the performance is good and a must for event photographers. F/2.8 is already a little slow and anything slower will not do. It does most everything well to very well, just nothing spectacular.