I honestly do not know which is BETTER but I bought the SX40 and I am never going to look back I LOVE IT! It's fun and cool. You wouldn't want it for fast flying birds but it works for everything else. I have to try street shooting with it I know it would be GREAT. I just love the camera it's so much FUN right out of the BOX! I only am on my second time out with it and now I am going to do my C1 etc. now. I am getting used to what I like to shoot in certain areas but the first time out of the box I just took her and thought I will get used to the buttons etc by shooting. We shot all day and never picked up the 7D (I still have to learn that got that also), we were simply having so much fun. Some of the others might be better who knows, not me but I find this camera great on colors, easy to post process, very little noise, and WONDERFUL reach!!! So I am a happy camper as that is all I wanted from it, I knew it was no speed demon. As far as videos I am really not interested :).
'You can observe a lot just by watching'