Today Canon launched the latest in their entry-level Digital Rebel series – the 12.2 Megapixel XSi. Called the 450D in the rest of the world, the Digital Rebel XSi extends the resolution of the Canon CMOS sensor to 12.2 Megapixels from the current Digital Rebel XTi 10.1 megapixel. Also new to the Digital Rebel are a 3.0” LCD with Live View. This is a low-resolution 230,000 3.0” LCD like the Canon 40D – it is not a hi-res 3” screen as seen on the Nikon D300 and Sony A700. The Rebel XSi Live View improves on earlier EOS models with Live View by adding a new "Live Mode" function that allows the camera to focus automatically during Live View without lowering the reflex mirror.
It is very significant that Canon will include the 18-55 IS (Image Stabilization) lens as their standard kit lens with the XSi. The updated IS version features an aspherical lens element and is far superior in image quality to the older non-IS version 18-55mm f3.5-5.6. In addition the kit lens features Optical IS to compete with the body-integrated IS featured by Sony, Pentax, and Olympus.
The Digital Rebel XSi features:
12.2 Megapixel CMOS sensor
Canon’s EOS Integrated Cleaning System
3.5 frames per second
3.0” LCD with Live View shooting
9-point wide-area AF system with f/2.8 cross-type centre point
Picture Style image processing parameters
DIGIC III image processor
Digital Photo Professional RAW processing software1
Compact and Lightweight body
Fully compatible with all Canon EF and EF-S lenses and EX-series Speedlites
Canon has also changed memory to SD/SDHC from the present Digital Rebel Series Compact Flash. The XSi battery is also a new, larger, higher capacity LP-E5 battery that is the first new Canon battery in quite a while.
US List prices are $799 for the body only and $899 for the kit with 18-55mm IS lens. Europe Prices are €749 Body only and €849 Kit with 18-55mm IS Lens. The Digital Rebel XSi is expected to ship in April.