Canon Digital Rebel XT Review
We’ve had the camera for over a week now, and I have discovered some features I’m sure none have reviewed in their reviews.
The Rebel XT is made of hard, rough plastic, not alloy with a rubber coating like its big brother, the 20D. The Rebel XT is shaped much like other SLRs, but has a much smaller body. To it, we attached a lens somewhat larger than the standard kit lens. This contributes to the “roundness” of the camera, and thus improves the second of two important features I recently enjoyed discovering and testing.
That’s right, I’m reviewing its bounce and rollability.
Recently, I had the opportunity to test the bounce and roll of the Rebel XT. I searched high and low, but mostly high, for just the right surface and grade on which to perform this test. The chosen site: Interstate 35 at the drug and fire-ant infested dead end of eighth street just East of the highway. At this point, I just needed to ensure the surface was rocky enough. What luck! It is!
I carefully mounted the recently-purchased unit on my sturdy tripod so that it would quietly slip from its plate mount at the opportune time. As I tredged up the 30° slope, the camera slipped off, just as I had planned. It struck the rocky surface at just the right angle to quickly transition into the roll phase of the test. I coerced several fire ants to bite me so we could all participate in prolonging the rolling portion of the test as much as possible. Unfortunately, several ants died in the process.
The camera performed admirably. It struck with a solid thud, then slowly turned over to reveal the warm glow of the LCD screen, only to be obscured again quickly upon another turn. It rolled over with ease from pointing downward to upward, much as a person might do a front hand-spring. I was quite pleased to see this unexpected rolling behavior. Overall, I give it an 8/10 on roll and 4/10 on bounce. I can only imagine a rubber-coated camera would perform better on the bounce test. The XT certainly performed better in both tests than the SD100, which is quite rectangular and metallic in structure.
The experiment for surviving a collision with a vehicle travelling at highway speeds is next week, so I collected the camera quickly, dusted off the corners, and proudly walked home with the best rolling camera to date from Canon. The camera still looks new and performs perfectly.