I would recommend, although you can develope with ASPX template, i would not. Portal method is the preferred method as it gives control of the environment through the web portal. With ASPX templates, you have a hard-coded master page so you want to make any changes, you have to do it in code. Along with that you cannot add webpart zones or adjust the layout without going into code.
I haven't found anything you can do in ASPX that you can't do with Portal.