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Old Jan 27, 2007, 6:18 AM   #1
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After my Rebel XT was stolen in early 2006, I sold all my gear and decided to just go with a cheap p&s camera. Well, I'm now embarking on a new journey, and I need a real camera, again. I'm adopting my first child from Vietnam in late spring so I want a good camera for the trip, and for family pictures over the years. I've narrowed it down to the Rebel XT and D40, mainly for cost reasons.I will be sticking with just the kit lens, at least for the foreseeable future.

I've found the Rebel XT kit for about $570, and the D40 for about the same. So, pricewise there is no advantage to one over the other.

Pros of the XT:
8 MP
Canon Lenses
"Canon color"

Pros of the D40:
Better kit lens (?)
Quieter shutter and flash pop-up
Large LCD screen
Slightly lighter

I loved my original XT, but I did occasionally run into problems where the flash pop-up would stick and cause an error 99. This wasn't important once I got a Sigma flash unit, but I don't plan on buying a flash unit this time around, at least not right away.

Photo quality on these two unit seems very close, with the D40 having maybe a slight edge due only to its slightly better kit lens.

Any advice from people, especially if you've used both woudl be much appreciated.
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Old Jan 27, 2007, 9:51 AM   #2
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G35Guy-

It sounds as if you have sort of answered your own questions in large part. The Canon XT is a great little camera, but, due to its size, most folks are not 100% satisfied with the grip on the XT. In many cases they feel that really don't have a secure grip on the camera at times. In contrast, the D-40 has an excellent grip on it, that most folks find very comfortable and easy to use,while also being a small DSLR camera.

As you mentioned, theD-40 IMHO, has a somewhat better kit lens, a very simple, but extensivemenu and help system, which even includes advanced in camera post processing, as well as better automatic "in camera" processing that makes the photos very useable right out of the camera. The difference in 8.0mp on the XT and the 6.1mp on the D-40 will be barely noticeable to you. Steve has just completed a review of the D-40 and you might want to check that as well.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2007_...nikon_d40.html

The D-40 is restricted to the Nikkor AF-S lenses, but in your case that does not seem to be a problem. There are a good number of AF-S lenses available and the the Sigma OS lenses also work well with the D-40.

The final issue is that the XT is one generation older than the D-40, which may or may not be a factor to you. Either will serve you well. Yes, the famous "error 99,"where the XT failed to raise the built-in flash did affect many units.

MT/Sarah

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Old Jan 27, 2007, 1:33 PM   #3
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You have a pretty good sense of how the D40 compares to the Rebel XT. I'd say put some thought into what lens(es) you want to pair with the body, as they make as much of a difference as the camera alone.

Here's a link to more reviews if you want to do more research on the bodies:

Nikon D40:
http://vsxl.com/cameras/Nikon_D40.html

Rebel XT:
http://vsxl.com/cameras/Canon_EOS_35..._Rebel_XT.html
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Old Jan 27, 2007, 4:09 PM   #4
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Well, you already know how one camera handles. I suggest you go handle the D40 before making a decision. Unlike the other nikon cameras, the D40 has more of it's options buried in menus. If you always shoot in auto mode it won't make a bit of difference. But if you're planning on sticking with a camera for a few years (and it sounds like you are) you'll want to be sure the features you like to use are easily accessible.
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Old Jan 28, 2007, 8:11 PM   #5
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mtclimber wrote:
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G35Guy-

The final issue is that the XT is one generation older than the D-40, which may or may not be a factor to you. Either will serve you well. Yes, the famous "error 99,"where the XT failed to raise the built-in flash did affect many units.

MT/Sarah
You mention that the error 99 was well known. Do you happen to know if this was corrected in later models, or do I risk running into it again even if I buy a new XT?

Canon has a spot in my heart, so I'm leaning toward the XT. I've seen the D40, and it's very nice, too. I know I'd be happy with it. I'm just not sure I'm gaining anything picture-quality wise with it. Then there's also the Pentax K100D which I hadn't even considered...I haven't been able to find one to actually see in person...any thoughts on it compared to the XT or D40.

Thanks
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Old Jan 28, 2007, 8:25 PM   #6
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I am sorry but I cannot tell you for sureif the Error99 has been corrected in the newer XT models, however, I have two friends who have experienced it. My own XT has not shown the error.

As to the Pentax K100d keep in mind that it is a physically larger DSLR than the XT or the D-40. It has received good reviews. However, the lens selection IMHO is somewhat limited if you are looking for fast (wide aperture) lenses other that the fast 50mm lenses. The Sigma 30mm F 1.9 just became available in the Pentax mount, and it does a fine job.I have attached a sample photo taken with the Sigma 30mm F 1.4 mounted on my Pentax K100d.

MT/Sarah
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