Looking to run a E8400 which I hope to overclock maybe 20% max, and a single ATI 4850 or 4870 which I will run at stock speeds (hot enough as is).
Basically, I will not be running things hard, but I want something stable, cool (I like seeing the heatpipes for the chipset, not sure how hot the board itself will run), and something that will last me 5 years (like my current Asus).
What would you pick (be it one of these two or something different)? Hoping for $150ish, less if fine.
Either would do the job. Don't anguish over minor differences.
If you have had a good experience with Asus, go with them.
I like the 8(vs. 6) rear USB ports on the Gigabyte, and have been satisfied with Gigabyte.
I would not expect anything you get to die within 5 years, but I would not expect to see any new CPU's become available for current motherboards.
In October, you will see Nehalem and X58 chipsets launch. None of the new cpu's will run on any of today's motherboards.
------Can you wait?------
I prefer the ASUS P45 boards and I personally would go with the P5Q-E for the onboard eSata, dual Gbit LAN, and right-angle SATA and IDE connectors.
One thing to note about the P45 boards is that they're still relatively new and have immature BIOSes. ASUS and Gigabyte have both been putting out a lot of new BIOS revisions to fix bugs, provide better memory support, etc. It's recommended to try the stock BIOS first and flash it with the latest revision if you run into any problems.
A P45 is a great motherboard, though a decent P35 will be fine as long as you keep the overclocks to a reasonable level. (EX. E6750 @ 3.2 stock voltage, Q6600 @ 3.0 stock voltage) The MSI is supposed to be the absolute best P45, and when I built a system with it I would honestly say it might be the BEST motherboard I've messed with. Again, unless your looking for an overclocking board there is no real reason to spend twice or more for the P45. That said, Gigabyte and Asus (except the Striker series) make great boards and will serve you well.