I am glad to hear that you have moved to Version 9 as it seems to be much more stable and the menu problems solved. You are going to love the pan and zoom feature and the chroma Key is awesome. I also started with Version 8 and found it to be very easy to learn. I had no experience whatsoever in the Video Editing world and now I have completed several large projects for my church that they are most pleased with. By no means is this anywhere near what you can do with other larger programs out there but for a entry level program at a very reasonable cost, I find it hard to beat. If and when I require more than what I am being asked, I will be looking at a new program such as LE or Premier.
I am sorry you are having difficulty with your capture. I have been capturing and editing from Analog devices with no problems so far and not sure what to say. I am using basic analog cables plugged into both a standalone DVD player and standalone VCR into Pinnacle 9 that plugs into my video card. I will be back in the home later today and take a look at my set up to see if there is something that could help you. I am sure it will be something very simple in the fix. Hang in there.
AMD Athlon 3200
Asus A7N8X Dlux
1 Gig Mem
Windows XP Pro
2 Seagate ATA 160 Gig HD,1 Maxtor 120 Gig HD
Sony DRU-510 DVD/CD Burner
Pinnacle 10 PlusMediaSuite
PremierPro 1.5 Suite
Sony HVR-A1U 1080i HDV Camcorder