The Rebel XS' control layout is almost identical to that of the XSi. The only differences: the LCD is smaller and there's no display-off sensor underneath the viewfinder. Like those of the XS, the buttons are shallow but responsive and easy to differentiate.
As with the Rebel XSi, the XS has a very good noise profile, with no serious detail degradation at all. There's a bit of blurring at ISO 1600, but even that looks better than lower sensitivities on other cameras.
Because the XS ships with a relatively good kit lens, it gets high marks for sharpness compared with many other entry-level models. This was also shot at ISO 1600, showing how good Canon's noise reduction is as well. (Actual size)
These are crops from ISO 1600 shots on most of the bottom-tier dSLRs. Pentax actually performs better than the rest, but has serious white-balance issues, and Sony and Nikon use overly aggressive blurring in their noise-reduction algorithms. We think Canon delivers the best balance overall.