Forgot to add this:
I am thinking of using Windows 8.1, I have heard there is a lot of backlash, but mostly with the UI and Because I'm coming from Apple, the fact the the UI is different doesn't bother me. Maybe there are more issues with 8.1 that I'm not aware of... if so let me know if I'm making a huge mistake.
I may be slowly acquiring parts over the course of this spring... OR if there is something coming out soon should I wait and buy it all at once.
Are sound cards important any more, 10 Years ago I thought about building and I remember looking at sound cards and they seemed like a big deal back then, how about now?