Hello to the esteemed photoforumites.
I quite like photography and have been finding the compact cameras I've had up till now rather restrictive (especially in poorer light conditions). I would also like a more responsive camera, with better IQ and that nice clicking shutter sound that the SLRs make (that's quite a biggie for me ). I haven't got any experience with SLRs and my budget won't stretch to anything too obsene (man, you look at a £500 camera and think, oh, jeez, that's pricey... Then you start reading up and looking around and it's "ooh, I guess I can stretch to £800"... Then you force yourself to stop looking if you know whats good for you...)
With that in mind I am about to buy a Canon 600D (looked at similar Nikon, but think I prefer the Canon). I am trying to decide what lens to get with it. I could either go for the standard 18-55 kit and then get a telephoto lens later, or I could get the 18-135 now, and not bother with a telephoto unless I really start missing it.
My thoughts are that with a 18-135 I get a bit more choice, don't have to worry about lugging 2 lens around. However is it as good a performer for normal shots as the 18-55 which seems to be IS II not IS. Secondly it'll mean a larger outlay from the beginning.
18-55 - cheaper to start with, possibly better quality (help?). Can save for an additional telephoto lens and have a more capable kit in the end. But more money overall and may be stuck lugging an extra lens around.
Remember I am a beginner - it's holiday snaps, portraits, etc. I am unlikely to go on a dedicated photo shoot, but I'll probably enjoy walks more if I can spot something nice to snap.
I'll also welcome any other advice, from best shops/accessories to anything else you can think of.