Based on several recommendations here and elsewhere, passed on the kit lens for my new XTi, bought the 1.8 and borrowed a 70-300 from my brother in law while I figured out how to use us the Canon (my first "good" camera).
Couldn't be more pleased with the images from this little gem. Images seem sharp and color appears accurate.
Best of all, it makes the XTi in full auto about as simple to use as our old point & shoots so my wife does not get frustrated trying to catch a moment with the kids during the day while I'm at the office. Taught her to use the "foot zoom" (step forward or back) and & she's snapping good stuff all the time. Well worth it.