Looking at the cameras you posted, I would also like to recomend you look at the Pentax KR and other similar models - who knows maybe your daughter might like the feel and handling of the cameras.
Remember, most of the decision doesnt come from specs and price it also comes from the feel and usability of the item - Thats why we take test drives of cars. I didnt buy an entry level canon when I started becuse I preffered the feel of the Olympus, but now I can afford a higher level canon I bought it because it was my original choice of feel and useability.
Here are some things to think about
- the Rebel T3 shoots photos and video - and its a newer version
- the cheaper one, the XS shoots only photos
- the lenses they come with are the same so image quality would be almost hard to tell the differnce between the two - yes, 2Megapixels might be great but it means nothing if you arent going to make enlargements
So heres some questions to ask yourself
1) Is this going to be your daughter's first camrea and/or first DSLR?
2) Is she studying photography?
3) Is this a camera style she has been asking for - if so does she like taking movies or photos or both?
4) (this is just because I work with teens a lot) Does she want one because her friends have one? If yes, will getting her a DSLR that does NOT shoot video cause social issues for her?
5) Has your daughter held these cameras yet? If its a gift take her shopping then just stop at a store and ask to see some cameras and hold them yourself then pass it to her and ask her opinion as if you were getting for yourself.
So once you asked yourself that - you can make a stronger decision - If its only photos that she wants to take and is starting to learn photography, then by all means, save some money, spend the money you save on the memory card, the bag and a UV filter for the lens.
If your daughter is trying to get in with the crowd then I guess the newer one is good too but ONLY if you want to spend more money on the three upgrades - newer, 2MP and video.
If your daughter is good at photography and wants to get better and just doesnt ahve a DLSR, then by all means get her the best and just cut her allowance in half for it
hehehe, kidding, but its something to think about.
Also remember, if shes learning photography or good at it already and needs a DSLR, then Id also look at the prices of the lenses and other accessories like flahses to see the longevity of the camera. Dont be scared to stick to the two you are looking at, they look like decent buys just depends on what your daughter will be using for. More or less Id choose the cheapre version for 90% of the answers you might have, and unless shes already really good or learning Id get the newer one.
1) Olympus OM1 [Zuiko Auto-S 50mm f/1.8]
2) Pentax MZ-60 [Sigma 28-90 & 100-300]
3) Canon 7D [EF-S 15-85 & 70-200mm f/4 IS]
Leo's Flickr Page