Tell us more about your system.
Windows 7 64-bit OS
64 bit quad core 2.8Ghz processor (Intel if I remember right)
3 separate (non-raid) HDD, 1TB, 2x2TB
ATI Radeon 5700HD GPU
Welcome to the forum.
What are the full specs. of the AVI file? This ARTICLE will give you a bit of background on the AVI (and other) format, and tell you how to determine the CODEC, and other aspects. Very likely something in those specs.
I am using .avi files downloaded from the internet
It's very possible that's your problem. Stick to using media you shot yourself using a supported camera format, and things should be OK.
Unfortunately I cannot always have complete control over the media format, codec, camera it was recorded on, etc., especially since I have to work with whatever media is given to me.
I read the article mentioned above about codecs...but once I have the information on the codec used in the .avi file via G-spot or some other program how do I configure Premiere to work appropriately with that media?
I downloaded the latest 5.0.3 update and it did not help this issue.
I used Adobe Premiere 5 (not CS5, not Pro 5, just plain 5 back in 1999ish) for similar things and it worked fine - no errors.
Once one knows the proper CODEC, it's a two-step process. First, one finds that CODEC on the Internet. Here, I will normally try to go to the source, even if it means buying that CODEC. I seldom reach for the "free" versions first. Next, one installs that CODEC on the system, and reboots. Then, the CODEC will be available. Note: as stated in the article, just having a CODEC properly installed on the system is no guarantee that one's NLE can work with it. In most cases, it can, but not all. Also, having a particular CODEC might ONLY work with something like Export, but not editing.
What CODEC was in those AVI files?
If something like Indeo, DivX, Xvid, then there will likely be incompatibilities in PrPro. If MJPEG, or many others, just installing the CODEC should work seamlessly in PrPro.
I have to work with whatever media is given to me.
In that case, always request the original camera media.
My point was, with Internet video, things don't always go well. There are just too many variables that can cause issues like the one you're seeing here.
Using the original media from a supported camera, things normally go pretty smooth.
Tried all of the above options and none worked.
Just ended up unlinking the audio and setting speed to 99.968% of normal.