Canon Digital Rebel XT Review

Now that I have had this camera for a couple of months and shot a couple thousand pictures with it, I feel somewhat qualified to write my opinions of it. This is of course a bit behind the curve, since there are a lot of reviews out there already, but one more can never hurt.
In a word, this camera is fantastic. Toss in the fact you can get them for $600 these days and it’s a deal that is not to be missed. The quality is great. The speed it turns on is super fast. The capture time is so quick, I notice no problems in delay or having to wait to take multiple shots. It is a really cool balance of power an ease for those who are like me, stepping from the point and shoot world in to the full on digital SLR world. This is quite a shift and this camera makes it very easy.
While I’ve had to re-learn everything I used to know about real photography (f-stop, aperture, shutterspeed, etc.) this camera has made that an easy transition because I can try certain aspects out and see if they work. If they don’t I can keep tinkering with them until I get a feel for what this or that does and how it affects the shot. Some people bitch about the automatic settings, but on some level, I found them to be a big help because they allowed me to dumb down and see what the camera does in certain situations (by looking at the settings on the shot or the EXIF info later) so that I can see why my shot didn’t turn out amazing.
The only thing I’ve bought for the camera was another lens; a 100-300mm telephoto. That was a big help, since there’s only so much you can do with the 18-55mm wide angle that comes with it. I felt this frustration when traveling. On the subject of lenses, the one recommendation I’d make is to just get the camera body and buy whatever lens you think you’ll need (probably a telephoto and a wide angle in zoom variations) since the kit lens is crap. That was my one big disappointment out of the box. It’s action is terrible and it just feels super cheap. Scrap that and get a proper 18-55mm lens, preferrably with Image Stabilization if you can afford it. Or get it without so you can get the telephoto as well.
So, the only bad thing about the camera is that I really wish I had gotten the 20D (30D as it is now) because it is pretty much the same camera, but in a bigger size with a metal body. After shooting for a few hours, my hands are killing me holding this thing. It’s pretty small and I have really big hands. It would be incredible for someone with small or medium hands though. My neighbor who is quite diminuitive loved this camera immediately. That being my only real gripe, that says a lot. If you’re thinking about making the switch to SLR, give this camera a go.