Whatever you decide to do, make sure to take the files that you CANNOT imagine losing and write them to something that is not permanently connected to your computer. Don't rely on raid to protect against a catastrophe. $625 sounds reasonable. Just get a mobo with enough sata ports that gets reliable reviews on newegg and your set. Intel raid works well enough for what it is. Never messed with the amd raid stuff, but a friend of mine has been running a raid 5 for about a year with no problems.