I'm an amateur looking to step up from a point and shoot to a digital SLR. I'm looking to spend $500-$600 total on the camera and lens. Automated functions are always good, but it'd be nice to have manual settings to play with for more artistic shots. How many pixels do I really need? I want 10mp simply because that seems to be the # for the top amateur SLR's and also because it's a round number.
Feel free to convince me I don't need 10mp although I do enjoy editing images. I have moderate photoshop experience, but will most likely be using a less powerful machine and will have to resort to either gimp or paint.net freeware for any editing.
What do I get? Does brand matter? I'd like to be able to buy additional lenses for my camera. Perhaps get a less mp camera to be able to purchase an addition lens?
Thanks for any help,