When buying a new camera, you need to remember that the glass available really can effect your image quality aswell.
This is why that when I upgrade I am pretty certain that I will get a Nikon, probably a D40/D60, but because in the future I will be able to get the 18-200mm VR when I have the extra money which I have my heart set on, because the lens seems great quality and is extremely practical, which is very important to me.
If I brought a Canon, I would be stuck as to what lens / lenses to buy, because the sigma and tamron counterparts do not have VR/IS.
I know that you shouldn't base completely on the glass, eg, you will get a 18 - 200mm VR when you have a small budget which will only mean you can afford a used D40 and your really old unbranded memory cards!
When looking at a telephoto option, IMO Nikon have the better option for me too, because both Canons 55-250mm and 70-300mm don't have internal focusing, which I need because I am a regular user of the polarizing filter, where as the 70-300mm VR does!
So It all depends on what type of photography you're into. Maybe you like portraiture and you may get an EOS 40D and some nice f/2.8 lenses and still get good image quality, and you have the wireless transfere when in a studio. Ok, the 40D isn't budget, but you get my idea, because if you do have a portrait studio, this is probably one of your options.
Just thought I would add this little snippit of information here!