If you're talking low-level SLR's, Canon > Nikon 8 days out of the week.
CMOS >>>>>>> CCD
Just make sure to get the Rebel XT, not the XTI. The XTI has too high of a megapixel rating for the size of that camera. It will produce too much noise.
If you're looking for a really legit recreational SLR, though, be prepared to spend at least $1,500.