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Christmas Gift Guide
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.
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Like all the entry-level models, the XS provides a full-auto option and a handful of scene modes, in addition to dSLR-class manual and semimanual exposure modes.
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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.
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The XS generally delivers quite accurate color. Unfortunately, most of the colorful flora is dead in August in NYC, so these may not provide the best examples.
Caption by / Photo by Lori Grunin
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)
Caption by / Photo by Lori Grunin
Shadow areas of ISO 1600 shots show more color noise than better-lit ones, but the color noise still isn't too bad. (Actual size)
Caption by / Photo by Lori Grunin
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.
Caption by / Photo by Lori Grunin
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