the new code kept coming up, so I did a couple things in no particular order:
1. detached the battery while the camcorder was in power up mode but before the Eject indicator and new code came up. Reattached it about 30 seconds later, and it powered up w/o any issues.
2. left it powered up without the tape in for about 15 minutes. It kept the indicators from showing up and allowed the camcorder to 'warm up'. After I put the tape back in, there were no issues. I could power down and power back up and operate the unit in record and playback without any issues.
The thing that seems to keep happening is that whenever I charge it up, and then power up(disconnected from the charger), the code reappears. After 10-15 minutes of doing the above, it operates fully without issues.
While it's a pain in the butt, it's still cheaper than a $300 replacement. While I like the way this Sony operates, I'm kind of hesitant about getting another.