DV is nice, but all I have now is a puny 8mm Sony Handycam. It's served me well, and it'll serve me nicely until the end of the year, when Santa said he (actually, she ) will be bringing an XL1s for me.
Till then, this regular 8mm will do just fine...
In your case, it's hard to assume what your interest level is, but I'll tell you this -- it's easy to overbuy. Don't discount Hi8 camcorders -- they're cheap, and produce very nice images for less than the cost of your average digital still camera.
Very inexpensive Sony Digital8 cameras can be had for less than $500 that produce absolutely beautiful images for the casual/hobbyist videographer. You can firewire them into your PC and you're good to go. I highly recommend this route for anyone who just wants to goof around and learn about DV without spending a ton of cash up front.
More serious DV cameras cost more, obviously, but there are a few I think you might wanna consider if you don't think a Digital8 is for you. (seriously, though, check 'em out, you'll love the price and you can use Hi8 tapes!) Buying any single CCD (basically, the image sensor) is gonna be a push -- in my view, they're all about the same in the $799-$1200 price range.
All the models I'm gonna recommend are 3CCD models, meaning they use a different CCD per light spectrum -- the light enters the lense and is then broken up with a prism into red, green, and blue components, each with its own CCD.
Panasonic DVC10 -- A solid 3CCD model that's a little big, but sits nicely on the shoulder. I've given this one serious thought. Can be had at buydig.com for about $1400
Sony VX-2000 -- Helluva camera. A little pricey for its market, though. $3k at best buy, you can probably do better elsewhere.
Sony TRV-900 -- nice 3CCD performer for under $2k. Old handycam-style body, which is a serious plus for some users who value portability and tight-quarters shooting. Worth checking out. Sony is releasing the TRV-950 in June, though, which is an upgrade and looks to compete more favorably with the GL-1 (below)
Canon GL-1 -- the XL1,s little brother. Best optics of any sub-$3k camcorder. My second choice, if push comes to shove. $2k on average, though you might be able to do $1800 or $1900 from a reputable place Going lower than his from a shithole like Broadway video will mean a dogdy grey market piece of shit with plastic lenses and a photocopied chinese manual.
My two cents. A decent treatment of the topic can be found here.