Start here - then tell us what is on your short list.

In your budget, don't forget a tripod (or at least a monopod), wide-angle lens, extra hi-cap rechargeable battery and an external mic (so be sure your camera selections have a mic-in jack).

What kind of computer is it?

Does it have FireWire?

A DVD burner?

How much available hard drive space do you have to transfer video on to?

How much RAM?

What application are you expecting to edit with?