We got a new Sony AVCHD video camera at the office - and the camera/video is fantastic! But the format is so new, it seems that only newer software/editing tools support it. Before you go out and get it, make sure you have the software to edit it! Could even be more than the camera itself!?! Here is some detailed info on AVCHD (Advanced Video Codec High Definition). The codec is now being used by Sony, Panasonic and Canon in their new HD cameras.
CoreAVC, a reasonably cheap($15?) and quick h.264 decoder for Windows, can decode AVCHD as well as a variety of other h.264 formats (info via doom9).
Some peeps are using this $30 converter for AVCHD (windows only).
Supposedly Mac supports AVCHD native with iLife 08 (via amazon). and FYI - the swiss army knife for Quicktime (Mac OS) is the Perian codec.
And in related news... 'DVD Jon' frees your media with DoubleTwist.
*Much thanks to Jeff Gray and Michael McReynolds for info posted here.