Re: Want to Build Multimedia/Gaming machine
first of all, i wouldn't say the mobo is the "heart" of your rig, more like the foundation of a building... you CAN skimp on it and the building MIGHT still stand up for a while, but do you really want a pile of rubble after a couple years?? didn't think so!
the mobo choice isn't really influenced by any of the things you've listed there... the main 2 are budget and CPU choice... so,
if you wanna stick with Core 2 to keep the budget down a bit, i'd recommend the Gigabyte EP45-UD3P.
if you wanna splurge and grab an i7, i'd recommend the Foxconn Renaissance which was going for about 265 last time i looked
i'm not really too up to date on AMD motherboards, but i know Gigabyte has the MA790GP-UD4H which is supposed to be an absolutely amazing board, but you'd have to ask one of the AMD guys, cuz i've really got no idea