Eric Chandler 5:46pm, 1 December 2009
Just out of curiosity, what do you think the sharpest aperture is for the 35mm? I haven't really fooled around with this lens yet, but I remembered when using the 50mm 1.8, it was very sharp around f/2.8.
Shadow Hunter 9 years ago
Most lenses are sharpest around 2 stops down from maximum.
wwwuppertal 9 years ago
Might be fun to find out yourself. In the digital age we don't have to waste film to run a series of test shots (sturdy tripod, different f-stops and distances). Your screen will clearly show you the differences. Anyhow I'd expect the best results around f4 - f5.6.
Oranse Taylor 9 years ago
I'm gonna say f8
DFW_Nikonite 9 years ago
Marked improvement @ 2.8 ... super sharp by f4
Keith Montgomery 9 years ago
looks like f4

this is from

Its a great place to look for stuff like this.
phuviano 9 years ago
I haven't done any test, except just zooming in on pictures. I would say F9 is the sharpest.
Fly_Dog 9 years ago
Another in-depth test is at:

Lenstip 's "edge"is close to Photozone's "border." I like that Lenstip analyzes and illustrates a broad variety of performance traits.

The lens is plenty good to let you choose an f-stop for DOF or to get a given shutter speed rather than for sharpness. The edges might test lower at f/1.8-2.8, and vignette a little, but they're rarely going to be in focus anyway.
Eric Chandler 9 years ago
Thanks for providing those charts, very helpful.
Fac-Man 9 years ago
I found f4 the best and the chart seems to verify that.
IsaacMTSU 9 years ago
I say f5...
seemly bulb [deleted] 9 years ago
I feel it is at f3.5...though I am impressed with the sharpness from 2.8 to 4.0.
MARCO_POLO! 9 years ago
Off the top of my head, I was gonna say f/5.6, so I was close (looking at that chart)

ccting1976 Posted 6 years ago. Edited by ccting1976 (member) 6 years ago
Most of the tests jump straight from f/2.8 to f/4.0. f/4.0 is sharper than f/2.8, but f/5.6 is less sharper than f/4.0. That means the peak sharp should between f/2.8 or f/4.0. Perhaps f/3.5.

Then it depends on the camera body too. D5100 suffers from diffration starting from f/5.6, so.. it could not be more than f/5.6. I believe the sharpness also depend on camera processing, and also the low pass filter of camera..

Combine those factors giving D5100 sharpess @+- f/3.5 using this lens i guess

I never satisfy with sharpness, i want sharper lens.. ;D
Andy Hurtig 3 years ago
For my copy, I would say f3.5 rendered sharpest image...see test album below link
Andy Hurtig 3 years ago

chadguest 3 years ago
in my use of it @f/2 depends on what your subject is but this is where starts becoming sharp. @f/2.8 thru F/8 its tack sharp [my lens is ] now after f/8 once again it depends on what your subject is . you can see some softness creeping in i have not shot nothing over f/11 but its not bad at f/11 you can always use the sharp setting in photoshop or lightroom ..heres a photo shot at f/2.8 ..... .......
Patrick Jakubowski 3 years ago
Few years ago I have made an extensive test of 35mmf1.8g DX on a full frame. This was more than this lens was made for. I have found that the lens is not only sharpest at f/3.5 but it is at its peak also in vignetting and chromatic aberrations. That is strange but it vignettes less and less from f/2.8 to f/3.5 and then it vignettes more at f/4 and onwards. Also at the extreme corners of FX frame where this lens should fail at every aperture it behaves quite good and also best at f/3.5. A little bit better than at f/4.

The lens at f/4 with FX frame and DX frame labelled:
f40 by Patrick Jakubowski
Manzoorul Hassan 1 year ago
I have not done any scientific tests, it's anecdotal but to me f/4 thru f/8 seems really sharp. I use it on my D80 and D300. So that is definitely something else to keep in mind. If you have a different body, you might have slightly different result / experience.
cauger Posted 3 months ago. Edited by cauger (member) 3 months ago

Fac-Man sir, I refer here shadow hunter (member of this group), who says that "Most lenses are sharpest around 2 stops down from maximum"; if we accept that then, this 35mm Nikkor should give its sharpest output at 2.8 on a nikon dx. Moreover, for a given ISO, when one moves from f/2.8 to f/4.0, one has to down adjust shutter speed. Therefore, handheld shots are not very worthy. These are not to argue but to clarify some of my doubts.
Thnx & regards
cauger 3 months ago
ccting1976 sir, If that be the case, what was wrong with the kit lens (18-55mm)? that ranges f/3.5 - f/5.6. It also gives f/4.0 at 31-33mm. May be I am confused because of my newness with this lens!!
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