I know this question is asked a lot here and, trying to get into photography myself, I'll get right to it. Basically, wanting to shoot anything I can, starting with landscapes and possibly basic portraits and things. I'm really looking into practicing a lot and mainly just going out into the world to shoot. I have the option to buy a Canon EOS Rebel T3i as noted in the title for the price of $170. It comes with an 18-55mm lens and a few other smaller accessories. I'm really just wondering if it's a good starter camera. Is that a good price to pick it up at? I know that the camera doesn't really matter, but it's one that is readily available to me. Thanks for any input, guys!!
Not sure. I think it will largely depend upon where you're getting the item from. I would personally stick with reputable dealers.
As an example, B&H used department has a couple body-only T3i's at around that price. They have a T6 (note: not T6i) with the 18-55 for around US 250.
Do you have a maximum budget? May be worth to shop around a bit and check other options.
As you have been well-advised, the condition of the camera body and lens are critical. There is a list of things to check with a second-hand camera HERE.
If the camera passes the test and it's a starting point within your budget then I would say go for it. While the camera is not new, it is still quite a capable unit for stills photography. The following were all takan with this body.
Lens EF-S18-135 IS STM, f/10, 1/125sec, ISO-100
Lens EF-S18-135 IS STM, f/18, 1/160sec, ISO-100
Lens EF-S18-135 IS STM, f/9, 2 sec, ISO-200
The lens will be the thing you want to probably build on. If possible, your next purchase would be either the 18-135mm IS STM (or the more expensive USM), or the 55-250 IS STM (NOT a non-STM version).
The most important things are to LOOK and LEARN:
LOOK: Dorothea Lange, a great photographer said a camera is a tool to teach you to see without a camera. It's about being actively observant - always looking for an image and training your eye to see the possiblities.
LEARN: Join a local camera club or society and engage with the enthusiasts there. Usually they are happy to help new photographers and share their knowledge. You will also get the chance to go on photo shoots with them.
If you are a member of your local library, check the catalog for an item called LYNDA.COM or LINKEDIN LEARNING. If they have that, it gives you free access to a library of education materials that cover all aspects of photography. I know there is a full course on using the Rebel T3i, which will be very helpful for you. The tutorials are in video form, in small units and conducted by very professional tutors.
Take a lot of pictures - with digital, they are free and practise is the way to get experience. Learn your camera's controls so t that you don't have to think about where to find a button.
"I have the option to buy a Canon EOS Rebel T3i as noted in the title for the price of $170."
The T3i is as good today as it ever was. At one time it was the top of the Rebel line. Check it out to make sure it works as expected. After all its only a $170 bucks not much money for a decent DSLR and lens as long as it is in good working condition.