When I was buying snowshoes what I ended up basing my decision on was three things: Weight, crampon size (I know that sounds dumb), and binding. I've had a couple of different pairs, both of which I've liked. I currently have the Tubbs Mountain series but those are a bit pricy ($250). I've had the Crecent moon Permagrine before as well, but upgraded. You can find the Crecent moons relatively cheap and I love the binding system they come with. Sherpa also has a great binding system and are of moderate weight, check out thier Khumbu Climber or Pembu Mountain. MSR's are great, but weigh a ton. MSR's are nice because they will last you a lifetime, have a great binding, and can be adjusted for the type of shoeing you're doing. (ie. the lenght can be adjusted for flotation). Keep in mind that when you see the great price on MSR's you still will probably have to buy the tail. Tubbs has the mountain, the pinnacle, and the altitude, all of which are decent. Try and stay away from shoes that say Hiker or Adventure.....those types of shoes tend not to hold when you get to the harder base of snow....you'll see what I mean. Also, I tend to think that Redfeather and Atlas are a bit cheaper shoe, not made as well as the others. If you're looking for SUPER light, look at northern lights, but they are expensive and generally not for ascents on steeper/rougher terrain. Check out www.snowshoecenter.com.
They have great prices and good service. Also, do a search on the internet once you find the shoe you like....some price shopping.
All in all:
-Sherpas have the best binding and good crampon system.
-Crecent moons have a good bindings and are pretty light.
-Tubbs are very durable, have a decent binding and one HELL of a crampon system.