We just bought an automatic '01 Forester S with 136k for $3k and there is a scrubbing scraping noise whenever rolling and only when you push gas. Recommended transmission shop with Subaru experience pinpointed the noise to the differential and suggested the bearing is bad. Don't know how far into it they got but the repair will cost $750, does all this sound on the level?
No. Your getting hosed.
I'd check wheel bearings first. Or even possibly the brake rotor backing plate being a bit bent and touching the rotor. (possibly under load becuase of bad wheel bearing letting hub shift in knuckle.)
Subaru front diffs almost never have bearing failure. Not in the side outputs. Occasionally the pinion shaft bearing will go, but then you get gear whine, and shavings in the diff fluid. This is ussually on turbo or 6cyl cars too, not NA 4cyl.
If you are really considering front diff work, drain and check the fluid first. If the bearings in diff are the cause of the noise, there will be ALOT of shiny shavings in the diff oil.