i am a beginner, some call me noob, but anyway, i am interested to buy a dslr. i've been going thru the forum to look at most of the 'buy' threads, the comparisons threads, even other poster's want to buy threads, and i've come to a conclusion: oni Nikon D80 and Canon 40D fits my requirement. Nikon due to it's lower price and peer support (my fren has one too, so if need to borrow stuffs, easier), and Canon due to the low priced feature packed model.

Now, i got this problem. this is 2 competing models that's not even from the same manufacturer! my biggest headache would be should i buy just the body, i would have to source the lens from elsewhere, and therein lies my prob. which camera body is more versatile in terms of availability of good, value for money lens either from it's respective maker or 3rd party maker?

i plan to get 2 lens, not rite away, but staggered purchase. prob is, which 2? i know i wan 17-80+mm and another 70-200++mm, but search as i might here and nikon's, canon's and tamron's site, cant seem to find the one i want for the price that i could afford, for either camera.

so, to cut a very long question short, which lens to get if i get a nikon d80 for a budget of less than sg$2300. and which lens do i get if i buy canon 40d for a budget of sg$2500?

my requirements: 17-70+mm for general use, and planing to buy right away, while the 70-200++mm planning to get a year down the line. i donno about aperture...i guess i would be okay with f/3.5, but if the price diff with f/2.8 is not much, i would prefer f/2.8. but brwsing thru the cataloqs looking for such lens is hard work, and after looking up several promising candidates, found out they cant be used on canon...or nikon....arghhh! this is frustrating.

i know i am writing alot. please help. thank you! thank you!