Quote Originally Posted by paul_c5x4 View Post
Agreed. If she already has a selection of EF lenses (not EFS), stick with Canon. Go for a recently made body and avoid the older 600 models - Quite a few of the older bodies are suffering from a Canon Wheeze. This is due to the light seals breaking down and gumming up the shutter blinds.

Rather than picking a random body from ebay, I'd recommend being able to give it a close look and exercise the shutter a few times before purchasing. Look for oily smears on the shutter blinds and reject anything that is even slightly suspect.
This was exactly my experience. I started with a Canon 450D and then moved to film soon after. I had at first a cheap canon EOS Rebel G and now moved to an Elan, after experiencing the shutter problem due to the light seals spreading sticky black gum on it. The problem can be quite serious. It can cause the photos to be partly exposed, not exposed at all if the shutter gets stuck or grossly overexposed if jammed while closing, so I can highly recommend as well, when buying, take a very close look and make sure the curtains are very clean and try the shutter at different speeds as well.
Now I'm very happy with the Elan, it has a relatively good light meter and I personally use the Canon 50mm f2.5 macro, a spectacular lens and in my opinion the absolutely sharpest of the whole Canon series. I like it for portraits because if you use it wide-open it does not show too many skin blemishes and at the same time it has extremely low distortion, so the face looks very natural and balanced.