$3,000 get you into nice bike. I made the same jump as you, from mountain biking, a little over a year ago. I would never have guessed it but spend 10 times more time on my road bike now. I would suggest you get something with Ultegra or equal components, carbon frame and look at the wheels. A lot of bikes package bikes with heavy wheels because people don't notice. Wheels are a very expensive upgrade. Some companies are coming out with 2011 bikes and are raising prices slightly or not at all. That means 2010 will have to go on significant price markdowns. No one can tell you what frames to go with. You'll have to get on them and ride. You'll find one you fall in love with and then you'll know. Most large manufacturers bikes are similar and all good at this price point. It's really the sweet spot, in my opinion, at getting into higher end bikes. Good luck and be prepared to fall in love.