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What would you do?

I would like some opinions on which DSLR to purchase. I am somewhat familiar with photograpy principles, but I am relatively new to the DSLR world. The camera would mostly be used to take pictures of my small kids with some travel/landscape type photography thrown in too.

Here's what I'm leaning towards right now. I'm either going to buy a Canon Rebel XT (yes, I know it is discontinued) or a Rebel XTi. With the Rebel XT, I would just purchase the body and then add a Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens.

If I buy the Rebel XTi, I would only be able to afford the stock lens kit, which is the EF-S 18-55 mm Lens.

So, a few questions:

1. Is there a difference between two lenses I'm considering? Does one have image stabilization while the other does not?

2. What would you do given the situation?

3. If you don't like either option, please suggest another set up that runs between 500-700 dollars.

Thanks for your input.

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Well..

In reply to: What would you do?

I'd say that it depends upon your budget. EF-S 18-55 IS is a pretty nice lense, so is Canon Rebel XTi.

1. The one with the IS is the better lense. I'd say much better coating and the lense components.

2. I'd rather choose Rebel XTi instead of Rebel XT, nearly obsolete by now. THe newer DSLR, the better techonology. You can pay for the good lenses later on.

Good luck.

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added thoughts

In reply to: Well..

Are you going to be OK with only having 55mm as the longest range? The 18-55IS lens is much better in regards to image quality and does add IS. The XT is a very capable camera. If you're looking just for a camera with kit lens only then you might look into the Olympus E-510. It has a very good kit lens and is about the same price as the XTI with the old kit lens. If you want to stay with Canon then you can wait a couple of months for the XS to be released and drop in price.

The thing is that diving into DSLRs can be very expensive. If you want to add a telephoto lens to the camera, which you will once you find out how short a distance the 18-55mm can zoom, then you're going to add another $300 for a consumer telephotos lens. Then you'll find out that the lens is not that great for sports or the kids running which will mean getting a brighter lens, and that will run you up more.

If you're going to shoot in the manual modes then the DSLR can perform terrifically, but if you shoot in auto modes then a really good point and shoot can match or beat most of the shots from the XT or XTI.

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Point and Shoot

In reply to: added thoughts

Thanks for the replies. In all honestly, I'd probably be using the automatic modes (at least at first). As I got used to the camera and learned more about photography, I'd like to move into using manual operation more.

Do you have a recommendation for a good point and shoot, if I decide to go that route?

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many choices

In reply to: Point and Shoot

If you're going to be a casual photographer then any of the entry level DSLRs will work very well for you. Now with you doing auto modes, then I would suggest the Nikons, Olympus E-510, or the Canon XS. Those cameras have better out of camera shots, with auto modes, than the higher performance models because of the over sharpening and saturation that they do in camera which makes point and shoot users feel comfortable.

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