i just recently bought my mom a sony minidv one of the newest ones out with the 1.something mega pixel picture capturing. the one we had before that was also a sony.. couple years old. the video quality on this newer one is soooo crisp. be sure to get a camera with steady shot. both our sonys have em and i wouldn't even think about one without steady shot.
i've used my friends brand new panasonic videocam its also a minidv.. and it doesn't have steadyshot. it really sux coz i like to put videos together and allthe vids fromthat cam suck balls and move around too much. its not a matter of keepingyour hand steady either. coz the camera is soo small and light. any movement is seen on the tv.
im just an average consumer.. and thats my opinion.