On Friday morning, B&H Photo in New York received a shipment of 50 Canon EOS Rebel T2i bodies. I thought, okay, that's cool, I'll post a little item about it at 6:30 Saturday (Central Time) when B&H returns from its weekly Shabbat break.
Too late. All gone.
This camera is likely to be the hottest seller in all of cameradom for the foreseeable near future. If it isn't yet, it's a matter of supply. We can debate all we want to about the advisability and desirability of putting a mega-mega 7D sensor in a Rebel body, but the combination of Canon's best APS-sized sensor and the responsive, small, well-made and not-too-expensive entry-level body—from the still-leading camera maker—seems to be hitting camera buyers smack in the pleasure center of the brain.
I've never used a Canon Rebel. In fact I haven't used any Canon in recent years except for the 5D Mark II. I really should try a Canon some time. This is the one that tempts me the most. I regret that it doesn't have a way to stabilize the kind of lenses I use, but other than that, seems like catnip.
One of the essayists I follow regularly, James Surowiecki, who writes the "Financial Page" in The New Yorker, wrote this week about how consumer goods are soft in the middle but strong on either end—that is, bargain goods and luxury goods are both doing well, but mid-market products aren't. He makes his case with the iPad and automobiles, but it made me wonder how that trend might be playing in the camera market. It would seem to predict strong sales for T2i's and 1D Mark IV's, and weakening sales for the 7D (which is, you'll notice, being offered with several rebates, so maybe he's right). The key is that I don't really know what "the lower end" of the camera market really is in the mind of the market itself—$800 for a Rebel body still seems kinda mid-market to me, with "the lower end" being point-and-shoots, up to tasty morsels like the S90. But who knows? Maybe that's just the view from here.
I'll try to give you a more timely heads-up when the next batch of T2i's hits New York. My bad.
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Original contents copyright 2010 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved.
Featured Comment by Sandro Siragusa: "I wish the Rebel and Canon well, but the 2-year-old Nikon D90 sells for $25 less (Amazon prices) and bested the new Rebel in a recent head-to-head in focus acquisition speed, mirror black out time, shutter lag, kit lens quality, high ISO noise and resolution (impressive since it's 12MP and the Rebel is 18MP), ergonomics, pentaprism vs. darker pentamirror, metering, flash control, dynamic range optimization, and menu customization. So I think sales of the Canon, well-deserved as they may be, are going to those who equate newer with better and more megapixels with better, and are not looking at all the available choices."
Mike replies: ...And don't forget the DxOMark Sensor ratings, where the D90 is still the highest-rated APS-C camera. That camera really is a "hit."
Featured Comment by Zaan: "Comparing this to a two-year-old Nikon is all fine and well, until you mention that the Canon does full HD video. You can use all the nice glass that you already own or will one day and create short and long movies that a similarly priced camcorder couldn't even come close to. So whereas $25 more might cost you a (slight?) reduction in image quality, it will give your creativity an entirely new realm to explore."