Since getting the filter adapter, I've been playing with a 500D close-up lens to see what it can do to overcome the macro deficiency of this camera. It doesn't make a big difference when zoomed out, but does when zoomed in. Usable for flowers, but never ever going to do insects.
The only Canon accessory that justifies the removable ring around the lens is the macrolite adapter, but it doesn't do macro, so that's a bit of a waste. That ring rattles. I put some removable tape on the inside and made it stop that, improving the feel of the camera a lot.
The hood is good. It is small and unimposing, and you can leave it on to protect the front element (more than anything), and not have to bother with the lens cap so much.