If there was ever a better reason to buy a Mac, this is it. I have a Sony miniDV that just plugs into my mac and works out of the box. Still not being able to convince anyone to actually buy one however, I'd suggest trying the following stuff:
1. You mentioned that you tried to connect it via USB. My Sony Handycam TRV-22 has both USB and firewire (iLink or IEEE1394). The USB is only used to transfer STILL pictures from the memory card (if you have it) or to use your camera as the worlds most expensive webcam. You will need to connect your camera via FireWire (Apple's name), iLink (Sony's name), or IEEE1394 (geeky engineer assigned name). This is the ONLY way of importing video to your computer. If you do not have any of the abovementioned ports on your pc, then you will need a PCI card that does. I bought one for my PC for 20 bucks a couple years ago (before switching to the dark side of Mac ownership).
2. I have had problems importing video on my old PC. In fact, i never made it work. It was probably because of the POS card i bought. I heard that some cards don't like to work with certain cameras etc. My girlfriend has firewire on her new laptop and has had no trouble getting video in from my sony.
3. What program are you using? I use Final Cut Express (mac only) and Amanda uses some cheap program that came with her laptop. I think it's windows movie maker... It works, but isn't nearly as powerful as Final Cut (free vs. $300). For a PC, i'd suggest getting a decent editing program and actually learning how to use it. Otherwise, you'll be doomed for life using the shitty cheap programs that abound for pc. I actually have one of those programs that came with my DVD burner for work. I'll mail it to ya if you want as i don't edit much video at work
Programs i'd suggest if you want to ever get somewhat serious would be Adobe's Premiere for $600, Avid's Express DV v3.5 for only $1599. I used premiere and initially found it very hard to use. Avid will be the same, but pro programs can have a steep learning curve. Avid rocks, actually, but for that money it better damn well do that
There are some programs for PC that are around $300, but i don't know myself which are any good. I heard Apple has actually the best bang for the buck with their Final Cut Express. BTW the program i have is made by ULEAD and the program i have is DVD Movie Factory 2SE. Again, i'll send it to ya if you want it. I won't even charge ya, you sexy bitch
Ok, to sum up this book I wrote... Buy a firewire cable. Your camera did not come with one (WTF Sony?). Get an editing program (you'll need it to actually control the camera and import your video clips). Finally, PM when you have problems.
I'm always helpful with geeky video and photo problems
You can call me on my cell at 630-915-9973. In fact, it would be easier, because we could discuss this stuff a lot quicker than pm'ing each other back and forth. I'll be in chicago between the 23rd and 28th, so if you're really stuck i can come by and help you with it some evening....