The 40d I just got is my first dslr and it is amazing. A friend of mine has a Nikon D2X and he is gonna show me what I need to know to take great pictures. I am sure that either camera you buy will work great for what you want, and I think that nikon and canon are definitely the best cameras as far as dslr cameras are concerned. What put me over the top with the 40d (I was going back and forth between the 40d and digital rebel xti) is that the 40d handles low light situations a whole lot better. It's actually comparable to the eos 5d, which is a $2500 camera.