I've spent the past few days helping my brother outfit his Canon 30D body with a walk around and a long lens. It's shocking to see how many of Canon's non-pro lenses earn low grades when reviewed by the experts. Nikon's line seems overall better than Canon's in this respect. For instance, I'm having a hard time finding him a walk around lens. At first I recommended the popular $500 Canon 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS, image stabilized, lens only to find it suffers from optical distortions at wide angles and softness peripherally. The new $170 Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens seems sharper and a much better value. We have the 18-55, 18-55 VR, 18-70, as high quality kit lenses. Prior to the new Canon 18-55mm most of the entry lenses were handicapped at best. The long lenses are even worse off. We have the Nikon 70-300mm VR which offers very good quality for the money. The Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS gets no where near the same reviews--though photozone.de does like it more than some. One must jump to the professional 'L' series to get consistently good results. The Canon 55-200mm entry level lens seems to offer mediocre performance at best. The Nikon version gets much better reviews. I eventually recommended the Canon 70-200mm f/4L with a monopod, ($600 lens in non IS form) over the Canon 70-300mm IS f/4-5.6, ($500). I also recommended the Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens over the 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS. Besides saving him money with the 18-55 IS, I figure he can "upgrade" to the 17-55mm f/2.8L when he's ready and not feel bad about spending $169 on the kit lens. Nikon may not offer all the lenses we want but the one's they do have are generally very good in image quality. I think we're spoiled by the quality and forget what we have. To me the grass is greener here than over there.Notice I didn't touch on the Nikon 2.8's vs the Canon L's,(except the Canon 70-200 f/4L), they are all in a different league than the entry level lenses. Granted, I've never used Canon's lenses, I'm only going by reviews from fredmiranda.com, photozone.de, the-digital-picture.com, photo.net, and a few others.