XT or XTi

I know it has been disscussed (probably many times) in other threads but upon searching I had a hard time finding much information. I know the differences in the XT and the XTi as I have done a lot of browsing however what I lack is the knowledge to determine if the higher costing XTi is worth the extra money for what I need it for. I can really probably afford either however if I get the XT I could buy a better lens (probably the sigma 17-70) if I go with the XTi a better lens may have to wait a month or two. This will be my first SLR and I primarly want it for storm chasing maybe a few wildlife pics here and there, in your experienced opinons should I get the XTi or save $200 for another piece of equipment and get the XT?
 
As an owner of the original Digital Rebel who's been using the kit lens for the past two years, I can say without hesitation that the XT + Sigma option would be your best bet. The kit lens quickly becomes very frustrating due to its low quality (both in build and the images it produces), whereas ultimately the differences between one generation of a camera body and the next are relatively insignificant for most users. Using the kit lens on one of these expensive SLR cameras is, as someone once put it, analagous to going out and buying a Ferrari and then getting Wal-Mart tires. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the cheaper high-end consumer digicams feature lenses that deliver quality superior to the 18-55 mm.

The more you get into digital SLR photography, the more it becomes apparent that lenses are much more important than camera body. I frequent a Canon SLR forum where it seems common for people to spend upwards of several thousand bucks on their lens collection - and yet many of them own the 350D or even 300D because the extra features of the higher-end models simply aren't important to them.

Funny you mention the Sigma 17-70, though... after suffering with the kit lens for so long I finally placed my order over the weekend for one of those and it should be arriving tomorrow! I'll try and remember to report back with results after I've used it a bit.
 
I'd get the XTi AND a good lens lol. Charge the extra bit. I have the first rebel and the second(XT)....and I'm considering getting the XTi(no I won't sell the XT....but would the first one if I did do this). 10.1 megapixels is tempting me on a DSLR for under $700 new. You can do about all you'll ever want with 8 megapixels(or even 6.3 when shooting storms/clouds). If you ever want to license them out for various things, the resolution can quickly come into play. I was amazed to learn the XTi has the 10.1 mp sensor while the 30D only has the 8 mp. Since these are so "cheap" it's pretty tempting to keep upgrading them as they come out, so one has their latest images at the highest resolution they can, for a sane price(ie not spending $7,000 for a 1Ds for 16 mp).

There comes a point where one doesn't really gain much resolution by adding dots to the same size sensor. I wonder what the limit will be on these crop sensors. I'm guessing 10mp is getting close and if one wants/needs more then they'll need to be looking at full frame sensors for that. I know Sony used to stack them on, but just wind up with more noise and not so much add to the resolution. I know their older sensors were quite a bit smaller than even the Canon DSLR crop sizes.
 
I just purchased the XTi from BuyDig, now begins the long wait for the thing to actually arrive. I'm actually kind of excited, I'm sure if nothing else haveing the camera around to mess with will help pass the long dragging Months of Febuary and typically March.
 
I just received the XTi with the 17-85mm IS USM lens. Actually about to go to walmart to buy a memory card for it and take some fog pictures here in Amarillo. I thought about both and decided the extra 200 for the XTi was worth it. More megapixels, larger screen and the automatic dust removal system along with a few more functions did it for me. Will chime back with a few photos when I get the chance.
 
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