I am a novice in the current state of video editing. I have done some video editing on computers back in the late 90's when I was in high school, but haven't done much since. I have done a lot of reading on the net and talking with experts at camera stores, computer stores, etc, but they are all biased by their inventory and I'm not getting the full picture. I'd appreciate it if some expert could point me in the right direction.

Project Overview
I work for a technology company that wants to have low-res videos posted on our company websites and included on demo CD-Roms we send out. I'm pushing for doing it in-house rather than outsourcing. We have a semi-tight budget (not really defined, but low prosumer quality I suppose would be most accurate). To add a level of complexity to this, we also want to be able to send news stations some of this footage for broadcast so it needs to meet news station standards for broadcast b-roll quality.

Right now, the camera I'm leaning towards is the Sony HDR-FX1. From what I've been told, it would be broadcast quality for b-roll footage for years to come. I know I could get by with less than HD but doing it in that format would allow us to use it for much longer. Maybe HD is overkill but I think the higher quality is better long-term. And at $3,400, that's not bad.

First question, would the default microphone be OK for talking heads on camera? The only audio we need it to record is interview footage.

Another specific question I have about this model is it's lack of 24P capability. I read a review posted by someone saying that you could get it to look like film (without using their low-res Cinemaframe feature). The poster didn't explain how to do it. Any thoughts?

And is additional lighting recommended if you're doing news-like interview footage?

Right now, I have a 2Ghz, 1 gig of ram, Pentium Celeron. Will this handle editing HD video? I suppose that could depend on the software I use but I'll get to that in a minute. I could up the ram 2 gigs and I'll definitely need a fast external drive as my machine is running out of space.

Alternatively, I could possibly talk my bosses into purchasing a MacBook Pro or iMac. Are Macs truly more efficient at editing video? I've heard that for years but I'm never sure if it's true or not. If it's a close call, I think using the PC would be the ideal scenario.

Back in the late 90's, I messed around in Adobe Premiere but I used Ulead Media Studio quite a bit which I thought was a pretty decent poor-man's alternative to Premiere. For doing HD video editing, I'll need new software for sure.

I'm guessing if I get a Mac, I'd use Final Cut Express. But for PC, is there something cheaper than Premiere that I could get by with?

I'm sorry to come on this board and post all of these questions. If someone could breifly answer any part that they're an expert in, I'd really appreciate it. I've just had a hard time finding any unbiased, definite answers. Thanks.