Canon Rebel XSi vs T1i – A Digital Shoot Out

Canon Rebel XSi vs T1i – A Digital Shoot Out


Wayne Rasku

Imagine taking the best picture of your life.

And, while you are imagining, imagine that your picture wins a local photo contest in your city. It is selected for entry into a nationally published photography magazine, and photographers all over are emailing you to tell you what a wonderful photo you have taken.

Meanwhile, back on earth, you realize you need that DSLR camera to take such a picture. And Canon is your final choice. (Excellent decision, by the way). Now all you need to do is decide between the TWO Rebels that are at the top of the entry level DSLR market.

First, there\’s the Canon Rebel XSi (aka Rebel 450D), and then there is the Canon Rebel T1i (aka Rebel 500D). Both cameras are highly rated by people who bought them. Very few buyers have been dissatisfied with their purchase. You can find that out by going to or B&H Photo and searching for one of the cameras. You will find that there are user reviews there, as well as testimonials from camera buyers. The reason buyers are so happy with their choice of Canon DSLRs is that these cameras are masterfully manufactured and they take amazing quality pictures. The differences between the two DSLR cameras are fairly basic and easy to understand.

The difference in megapixels is not as significant as some might imagine. When you are talking about 12.2 vs 15.1 megapixels, it is like a drop in the megapixel bucket! You can produce a huge print from either camera… larger than 9 by 13 (which is the largest image that can be printed on most home printers). By the way, the T1i has the 15.1 megapixel image sensor, and the XSi has the 12.2 megapixel sensor.

THE major difference is that the T1i can take video while the XSi does not have video capability. And the T1i does not just take video, it takes HD quality video. While it is not as good as a dedicated camcorder, the quality is very good indeed.

Another major difference is Creative Auto. This feature is available in the T1i but not the XSi. Creative Auto is similar to features on some of the better point and shoot cameras. It allows the photographer to take more creative shots using camera settings rather than relying on the individual\’s own photographic knowledge. Canon\’s claim is that the beginning photographer can take better shots while learning to use their DSLR. The last difference in this DSLR shoot out is price. In this category, the Rebel XSi is the clear winner, coming in at about $150 below the Rebel T1i.

The bottom line: Do you need video and creative auto? Would you like to save about $150 that you could use to get a special lens? Go to to discover more about the Canon Rebel XSi vs. T1i debate.

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About the Author

I love photography and all things related to it. Cameras, camera gear, and image editing software fascinate me, so I am either buying the newest piece of equipment (or software) or researching my next purchase. Be sure to visit the Cameras-N-Stuff Blog.



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