Canon EOS Rebel XSi Review Summary
Canon EOS Rebel XSi Assessment
The Canon Rebel XSi is finally a more complete camera than any Rebel before it. Despite being part of the entry-level Rebel series, the XSi features spot-metering, a 3.5 FPS continuous drive with a deep buffer, depth-of-field preview and finally exposure-priority live-view with 100% frame coverage. Autofocus is slow in live-view and the controls are just bizarre, but this is the most accurate live-view we have seen so far, making it the first camera to receive our Live-View icon.
Performance is great but not perfect. Image noise is low and dynamic range is better than average. Exposure and focus system are just a little less reliable than most, but still mostly accurate. The ergonomics of the Rebel XSi are all right given its size but things are crowded and the grip is rather small. Definitely it is worth trying it in a store to find out if it is comfortable.
While it's hard to go wrong with the Canon Rebel XSi, it does face several tough competitors including the Nikon D60 and the Pentax K200D. Image quality is too close among these three digital SLRs to make it a deciding factor. The standout model here is the K200D which has builtin image stabilization and a weather-sealed body. It is also powered by convenient AA batteries and can get 1100 shots on a single set of those. On the other hand, the XSi is faster and has a much deeper buffer during continuous shooting. Aside from these features of the K200D, the largest difference between different brands of DSLR cameras is the selection of lenses available.
Need help choosing one or more lenses for a DSLR? See our short lens selection feature article.
|Excellent rendition of details||Poor white-balance under artificial lighting|
|Low image noise at all ISO sensitivities||Occasional over-exposure problems|
|Exposure-priority live-view with 100% coverage||Very slow autofocus in live-view|
|Fast and responsive||Above average number of focus misses|
|Great LCD visibility||Small hand-grip|
|Eye-start sensor||LCD flush with side|
Recent Similar Cameras
Canon EOS Rebel XSi HandsOn
In use, the Rebel XSi is normally straight forward. Certain things are not intuitive but can be learned easily. This is the first DSLR with a complete - but not ideal - implementation of live-view. Live-view being still an emerging feature tends to be implemented to various levels of uselessness. With this digital camera, we finally have an exposure-priority live-view with 100% coverage and autofocus. The exposure-simulation is very well done and any under-or-over exposure can be seen on the display, even when the metering limit of the camera and lens is exceeded. This is critically important to give an advantage to live-view over the standard optical viewfinder (OVF). The main problem with the XSi's live-view is a very slow autofocus system. An unfortunate problem is that the live-view interface is not only different but also bizarre. Many buttons no longer work the way they do when live-view is Off and a number of features become inaccessible.
|Canon Rebel XTi - 10 Megapixels, 2.5" LCD, 3 FPS, Compact Flash|
|Canon Digital Rebel XT - 8 Megapixels, 1.8" LCD 115K Pixels, No dust reduction system, 3 FPS, Compact Flash|
|Canon Digital Rebel - 6 Megapixels, 1.8" LCD 115K Pixels, No dust reduction system, 3 FPS, Compact Flash|
|DC Resource||DP Review|
|Photography Blog||Steve's Digicams|
|Trusted Reviews||Digital Camera Info|
Canon Rebel XSi Facts
SLR digital camera
|12 Megapixels DSLR||ISO 100-1600|
|Canon EF Mount|
Sensor-Size: 22 x 15mm
Actual size when viewed at 100 DPI
|Full manual controls, including Manual Focus|
|Built-in Dust Reduction||Custom white-balance with 2 axis fine-tuning|
|3.5 FPS Drive, 53 Images||Spot-Metering|
|3" LCD 230K Pixels||Hot-Shoe|
|Secure Digital High Capacity|
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Review
Uniquely compact mirrorless that features a 16 MP LiveMOS Four-Thirds sensor with ISO 125-25600 range, 1/16000s-60s, 5 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video. Full manual controls and a very complete feature-set.
Fuji X30 Review
Premium compact with a bright 28-112mm F/2-2.8 mechanical-zoom lens and a 12 MP 2/3" X-Trans CMOS II sensor with built-in Phase-Detect AF. Now offers a large 0.65X magnification 2.8 MP 100% coverage EVF with Eye-Start sensor. Dual control-dials and full 1080p HD @ 60 FPS.
Expert Shield Screen Protector Review
Expert Shield Screen Protectors offer scratch protection with a crystal clear covering that uses no adhesive.
Canon EOS Rebel T5 Review
Entry-level DSLR with 18 MP, 9-Point Phase-Detect AF, 3 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video in a compact body. The lowest-cost Canon DSLR yet.
Nikon D810 Review
Professional DSLR with anti-alias-filter-free 36 MP CMOS sensor. Ultra-low ISO 32 to 51200. 5 FPS and 1080p @ 60 FPS. Large 0.7X magnification 100% coverage OVF. All new processing-pipeline and Highlight-Weighed metering.
Fuji X-T1 Photographer Experience
Photographer Experience report on using the Fuji X-T1 along with the Fujinon XF18-135mm F/3.5-5.6R LM OIS WR and Fujinon XF10-24mm F/4R OIS lenses.
Olympus Stylus 1 Review
Premium compact with bright F/2.8 constant aperture stabilized 10.7X wide-angle optical zoom lens. Full manual-controls with dual control-dials, plus a huge 1.15X EVF with 1.4 MP and an Eye-Start sensor. 3-Stop ND-Filter and WiFi built-in.
Canon Rebel SL1 Review
The smallest DSLR yet packs a 18 megapixels APS-C CMOS sensor with hybrid Phase-Detect and Contrast-Detect AF. Captures images at 4 FPS and 1080p HD video.
Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon 2014 Review
The lightest 14" ultra-book features a high-resolution 2560x1440 QHD non-glare display in a carbon-fiber body with illuminated and spill-proof keyboard. WiFi, WiDi, 4G and Gigabit Ethernet all in one sleek design.
Nikon D4s Review
All-new Nikon flagship professional DSLR with a 16 MP sensor capable for ISO 50-409,600, 11 FPS continuous drive for 200 JPEG or 78 RAW, full 1080p HD @ 60 FPS with clean HDMI out, Time-Lapse Video, Interval Timer. Built-in HTTP and FTP servers, plus Gigabit Ethernet and more.