I've decided to buy a digital SLR camera. I have about 800 USD. I'v narrowed it down to the following,either the Canon XT or the Canon XTI. Both seem to be great cameras. Origionally I wanted to buy the XTi because it was 10 megapixels vs the XT with 8. But then I read that the XTi was pretty slow and the pictures it took were very grainy, even for 10 megapixels.Now I'm tending to the XT because they als said the the XTi was fairly slow between shots. Can anyone help me with my choice or reccomend another camera to buy?
This is the first time I've heard any of these negative things said about the 400D (XTi). Now I don't really follow Canon cameras too closely, having bought into Nikon myself, but still, I'd have thought I'd have come across such things before. Do you have a link to a source for this? I just can't imagine Canon somehow managing to make the camera slower. (Of course the time to write out 10 MP images is increased over 8MP images, but then the 400D has much improved continuous shooting (from 14 at 3.0fps to 27 at 3.0fps), so no slowdown should show there unless you use a really slow memory card.) And if you compare the conclusions to dpreview's reviews of the 350D (XT) and the 400D, you'll see that they consider the 400D a definite upgrade.
That said, the 10 versus 8 megapixels difference is absolutely negligible. I can guarantee you would never notice it in any meaningful way. Those two megapixels make the maximum resolution of your photos change from 3456 x 2304 to 3888 x 2592, or in other words, giving you a whopping 12.5% more pixels on a side. That definitely shouldn't be a reason to buy a 400D over a 350D.
The main differences that might actually matter, as I see listed at that DPReview review, would be the anti-dust coating of the 400D, the larger LCD screen, the RGB histograms and the better autofocusing (if that actually was improved noticeably).
Other cameras which I would definitely consider are on the Nikon side of things: the Nikon D40 (much cheaper than the Canons, which'll allow you to spend some money on a good lens; or if you still feel the megapixels would matter to you, the D40X has the same 10MP and costs about the same as the Canon), or if you have another $100 to spend, the Nikon D80 should have a street price of $900 and is a definite step up from the Canon 400D.
I saw a review from Cnet.com which tas essentially yelling me not to go with the canon XTi.
My apologies for the gramatical mistakes in the last post, what I ment to say was the site cnet.com was the site that told me not to buy the XTi. What camera do you own?
I never would trust a general review site like cnet for reviews - definitely not for reviews of digital cameras; a site with dedicated reviewers who actually understand what they're talking about is essential for a purchase like this, and general purpose review sites are more miss than hit. The aforementioned dpreview is a very good one (to such a degree that I'd be hard pressed to name another review site offhand), but the other good review sites have one thing in common, namely that they all focus exclusively on reviewing cameras.
That said, reading this cnet review (which I assume is the one you're referring to), I suspect you perhaps slightly misunderstood the review, as the main mention of slowness is with the cheap kitlens (which is identical to that on the 350D) and the comparison of graininess is to the Nikon D80, not to the Canon 350D. Its 7.8 rating is still pretty good and I definitely don't read from that review that you "shouldn't buy it"; the reviewer just found it a slightly disappointing upgrade, having hoped for more, considering that its main competition (that aforementioned Nikon D80; the D40 wasn't released yet at the time that review was written) performed so much better. (But then, the Nikon D80 is really competition for the Canon 30D as much as for the 400D.)
What camera do you own?
I currently own the Nikon D200, a semi-pro DSLR which is ever so slightly out of your budget. Before that I owned the Nikon D70, which was the (quite similar) predecessor to the Nikon D80 which I recommended if you have another $100 to spare.
thanks for the clarification.I'll check out dpreview and go from there.
it would be grainy, depending on the settings...so if you set up the film speed, shutter speed, aperture appropriately to each other, it should be ok. it's more or less a balancing act. i don't know much about the two, but the xti sounds like the newer model - it would probably be the better one...they usually improve with every model they make, don't they?
For the price mentioned, I would look at buying a used camera, say a 20D etc and invest in a nicer lens.
Go for whichever you can afford, but I promise you won't notice any difference in image quality in general use. Remember web forums and review sites are there to pick out tiny differences that distinguish one camera from the next, and Canon, Nikon etc are in the business of selling cameras.
They're not going to tell you that 10MP instead of 8 makes not the slightest difference, nor that dust removal systems are little short of pointless - even when they do shake the dust off, it stays in the body to fall back on your sensor next time you pack the camera.
Anyhow, a camera is for Christmas, lenses are for life!