Canon intros EOS Rebel XSi DSLR

Canon has introduced a new "entry-level" digital Single Lens Reflex (SLR) camera to its popular line -- the Rebel XSi. It sports a 12.2-megapixel sensor and costs $799.99 for a body-only kit, $899.99 bundled with an EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS zoom lens. Both will arrive in April, 2008.

The EOS Rebel XSi features improved autofocus, enhanced 14-bit analog/digital conversion, enhanced "Live View" that enables you to see what the sensor sees through the LCD panel on the back, and Canon's DIGIC III image processor.

The camera has a 3-inch LCD monitor on its back, up from 2.5 inches on the Digital Rebel XTi model. The larger screen uses larger fonts to make it easier to read menus and it also has a broadened color gamut and seven brightness settings.

The camera itself is made of steel and polycarbonate embedded with glass fiber, encased in ABS and polycarbonate resin. It's available either in black or silver finishes.

The 12.2-megapixel sensor is APS-C sized, so it sports a 1.6x focal length conversion factor. The camera works with Canon EF and EF-S lenses. The camera also has a self-cleaning sensor unit that shakes dust particles off the low-pass filter in front of the sensor.

Rather than using Compact Flash memory cards, the XSi supports SD and SDHC cards. It also works with Canon's new LP-E5 lithium battery, which the company claims can provide 50 percent more exposures per charge than earlier models.

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