The Canon EOS Rebel XSi Digital Camera incorporates a number of high-end functions and technology found in Canon's professional SLR models, including an improved autofocus sensor, enhanced 14-bit A/D conversion, and an advanced Live View function. Plus the proprietary DIGIC III image processor ensures that the fine details and natural colors of the images are optimally recorded, and also manages the camera's efficient energy consumption and high-speed signal processing performance.
The 12.2 megapixel APS-C size CMOS sensor employs large microlenses over each pixel to reduce noise and enhance sensitivity up to ISO 1600, while the 14-bit Analog-to-Digital (A/D) conversion process means the Rebel XSi camera records up to 16,384 colors per channel and allows the camera to produce images with finer and more accurate gradations of tones and colors. The camera also incorporates the Highlight Tone Priority and High-ISO Noise Reduction functions (previously found only on Canon's Professional Digital SLRs) and the camera is equipped with Canon's Auto Lighting Optimizer technology, which corrects image brightness and contrast automatically to prevent underexposure with backlit scenes.
The EOS Rebel XSi is fast - capable of continuously capturing 3.5 frames per second for bursts of up to 53 images. The faster frame rates and finer focusing capabilities of the Rebel XSi together with its impressive image burst rate will help photo enthusiasts capture split second action at just the right moment. Furthermore, the camera is equipped with a host of useful creative controls, including shutter speeds ranging from 1/4000 sec. to 30 sec. plus Bulb, a choice of four metering patterns including 4% spot metering, a wide range of exposure modes from fully automatic to fully manual, depth of field preview, mirror lock and much more.
The large, 3-inch, 230,000 pixel LCD monitor makes it easier for users to review images and scroll through the menus, and also features a broadened color gamut and a wide viewing perspective in all directions. Furthermore the EOS Rebel XSi camera features Live View - which allows users to frame shots through the LCD screen rather than the viewfinder - this is particularly useful when shooting at odd angles or in situations when looking through the viewfinder is impractical.
The Rebel XSi DSLR utilizes Canon's EOS Integrated Cleaning system. This involves a Self-Cleaning Sensor Unit that shakes dust particles off of the low-pass filter in front of the sensor, along with post processing with the supplied Digital Photo Professional software. Here the camera maps any spots that may remain on the sensor and subsequently subtracting dust spots from the final image during post processing.
In a departure from previous EOS Digital Rebel models, which accommodated CF type memory cards, the EOS Rebel XSi camera utilizes SD and SDHC memory cards including those with capacities higher than 2GB, making it the perfect upgrade for users already equipped with SD cards from point-and-shoot model cameras. In addition, it is fully compatible with all Canon EF and EF-S lenses, as well as EX-series Speedlites, an optional Battery Grip, and remote control and viewfinder accessories. In regards to its overall design, the EOS Rebel XSi camera features a substantial yet streamlined profile, with curved edges, contoured surfaces, conveniently placed controls and comfortably constructed rubber grip and thumb rest that all contribute to fatigue-reducing hand fit. The camera body is constructed of a rugged yet lightweight combination of stainless steel and polycarbonate embedded with glass fiber, and the chassis exterior is enrobed in a durable ABS and Polycarbonate resin that is resistant to impact damage.
- • Canon 12.2-megapixel CMOS sensor
- The CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor) sensor of the the EOS Rebel XSi captures images with exceptional clarity and tonal range, incorporating many of the same technologies to maximize light gathering efficiency that were first seen with the acclaimed EOS-1D Mark III model. The APS-C size sensor (22.2 x 14.8mm) produces an effective 1.6x increase in the lens's marked focal length when attached.
- • DIGIC III Image Processor
- Developed to maximize performance between the capture and recording stages of digital photography, the EOS Rebel XSi's latest-generation DIGIC III Image Processor works in concert with Canon's CMOS sensor to achieve the highest levels of performance possible. The entire electronic system is designed to give the camera its incredible combination of speed and image quality, and digital noise is significantly reduced in shadow areas, while color reproduction is enhanced for superior image quality.
- • 14-bit A/D Converter
- Formerly a feature only present in top-of-the-line pro digital SLR cameras, the 14-bit A/D conversion in the EOS Rebel XSi provides incredibly smooth transitions from light to dark colors, with far less risk of "banding." Even JPEG files, which are always finished at 8-bits per channel, use the full 14-bit conversion initially to generate the best possible color and tonal detail.
- • Highlight Tone Priority
- Takes full advantage of the EOS Rebel XSi's 14-bit per channel conversion, the Highlight Tone Priority function lets photographers get even better detail in bright highlights, even in high contrast lighting conditions such as mid-day landscape shots or portraits in sunlight. Using the feature does not have any impact on the camera's shooting speed or burst rate.
- • Auto Optimization
- The EOS Rebel XSi's Auto Optimization is an image-quality tool that is available in all shooting modes (including P, Tv, Av, and Manual), and comes to the rescue in tricky lighting conditions by actually lightening dark areas of a scene while ensuring that bright areas maintain tonal detail.
- • Speedy, Precise Operation
- With instant startup times, speedy autofocus and minimal shutter lag, the EOS Rebel XSi is one of the fastest cameras available today. It provides excellent performance with 3.5 fps continuous shooting, up to 53 full-resolution JPEGs or 6 RAW images in a burst, and reduced shutter lag time.
- • Large 3.0-inch LCD Monitor
- The EOS Rebel XSi has a huge, bright 3.0-inch TFT color LCD monitor with 230,000 pixels and a viewing angle of 170°. It's perfect for Live View composition or viewing camera settings like AF, ISO, Metering, AF Point selection and flash options. And the maximum brightness of the EOS Rebel XSi LCD monitor is about 30% greater than its predecessor, which is a big benefit when you're using the camera in bright sunlight.
- • Live View Function
- The Live View Function enables you to view your subjects directly on the 3.0-inch LCD monitor, making it easy to grab odd-angle shots and you can magnify any part of the scene 5x or 10x for precise manual focus. You can even choose a grid overlay, perfect for keeping straight lines in your subject straight in your pictures. The live view feature also adds a "Live Mode" contrast-detection AF function that allows the camera to focus automatically during Live View without lowering the reflex mirror. When using the EOS Rebel XSi in the studio, the Live View Function can be used remotely via a computer through the USB connection so you can view what your camera is about to capture on your PC Monitor.
- • Advanced & Adaptable AF System
- The EOS Rebel XSi has a high-precision 9-point wide area AF sensor for fast, accurate focus even in dim lighting, and has a number of focus modes, including One-Shot AF, AI Focus AF, AI Servo AF and Manual. In Live View Function, the EOS Rebel XSi has two AF modes: The Quick mode uses the camera's standard 9-point AF system, and Live mode, which is a contrast-based AF system that reads the sharpness of subjects right from the imaging sensor, and can be overridden by pressing the AF mode selection button.
- • 35-zone Metering
- The EOS Rebel XSi incorporates a 35-zone evaluative metering system with improved white balance that analyzes light based on each zone in the viewing area, thereby enabling the camera to choose the overall best exposure for the entire scene. There is also a spot meter option which reads a tiny area (about 4%) of the picture for extremely precise metering, and a Center-weighted average metering and partial metering for accurate exposure no matter the situation.
- • High-Capacity Memory Cards
- The EOS Rebel XSi is compatible with popular Secure Digital (SD) and Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) memory cards. These cards are compact, inexpensive and available in increasingly large capacities, making them a perfect complement to the EOS Rebel XSi's compact and lightweight body design.
- • EOS Integrated Cleaning System
- Keep dust off your image sensor and prevent Dust from ruining your images with the advanced Canon EOS Integrated Cleaning System. The EOS Rebel XSi features a Canon-designed Self Cleaning Sensor Unit consisting of a low-pass filter at the front of the sensor that shakes off dust automatically with ultrasonic vibrations, removing dust from the sensor assembly. This Self Cleaning Sensor Unit routine is automatically activated whenever the camera is powered on or off (It can also be manually activated), and a special collar positioned around the sensor collects the loosened dust. Plus there is a special coating on the front surface of the low-pass filter, to prevent dust from sticking to the sensor in the first place. Dust that may still remain on the front of the sensor can also be erased with the included software. A simple test shot of a plain, white object can be taken to produce a Dust Delete Data image. It is then analyzed in-camera to identify the location and size of any remaining dust and this data is added to any subsequent pictures taken. This data is transmitted along with the image, whether JPEG or RAW, and the dust can be either manually or automatically erased in Canon's DPP version 3.3 and later software, thereby ensuring the cleanest possible image.
- • Picture Style Settings
- With Picture Style technology and the EOS Digital Rebel XSi, photographers can recreate characteristics of their favorite films. Color, saturation, sharpness and contrast settings create noticeable variation in the saved image. In addition to six preset Picture Styles (Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Neutral, Faithful and Monochrome), Canon offers additional downloadable "Picture Style Files", that can be installed into your camera for even more imaging options at your fingertips.
- • Compatible with EF & EF-S Lenses
- EOS Rebel XSi is compatible with all Canon lenses in the EF and EF-S lineup, ranging from ultra-wide angle to super telephoto lenses. Canon lenses employ advanced optical expertise and micron-precision engineering to deliver unprecedented performance in all facets of the photographic process. Aspherical optics and fluorite elements, for example, are featured in the universally acclaimed L Series lenses, and Canon's Image Stabilizer technology in select lenses minimizes the effect of camera shake.
- • Advanced Flash Photography
- The EOS Rebel XSi features the acclaimed E-TTL II flash metering system. Whether using its flush-mounted integral flash or any of the flashes in the EX Speedlite line, E-TTL II provides reliable flash output through numerous exposures. Canon's Speedlite 430EX is perfectly suited to the EOS Rebel XSi. It includes an AF-assist Beam, which works in conjunction with the EOS Digital Rebel XTi's focusing system, and automatically sends color temperature information to the camera when the flash fires, for more accurate white balance rendition with flash photography.