After a couple weeks of careful research and consideration, I bought a Canon EOS Rebel T2i (550D).
I made this decision after reading many online reviews, and comparing features with the upcoming 60D. Overall, for my use, I decided this was an excellent upgrade for my photography.
I decided to purchase this camera body and a Canon EFS 15-85mm IS lens separately. This lens is a lot better than what usually comes with the camera. It’s more expensive upfront, but will ultimately be a lens that I will continue using with my future cameras as well. This lens features superior image quality, better sharpness, and a wider zoom range.
To protect the lens, I have attached a UV filter. This type of protection makes sense for expensive lens, as it eliminates the need to clean (and potentially damage) the lens itself.
I already had the horror of seeing smudges appearing on the filter, and they wouldn’t come off. None of the microfibre cloths I had already would clean it, so I purchased some cleaning supplies, as well as an extra battery and carrying bag. I’m ready to go now!