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In addition, even the cheapest consumer versions of Vegas provide a feature I find essential to video production. Vegas can send the program out signal to a video monitor via the Firewire port. This enables you to see what your program will look like on an actual TV screen, by far the best way to judge colors & contrast. Although you can buy video monitors with a Firewire input, I find it easier (and cheaper) to run the Firewire to my camcorder (set in the play position) and use the video outs on the camcorder to connect the monitor.
Good Stuff. I’m setting it up now. Where were you 15 years ago when I was trying to teach myself this stuff. (or better asked, where the hell was I?)