Building New System, Need Advice -$1200 limit

I am going to make my current system I'm using into a Linux server for my home network and gaming. It is a great system but I figured since I was building a new system I would get some of the latest and greatest. The problem is I'm not that familar with the latest and greatest, it seems hardware has changed so much over the last year. I can't even seem to find a decent motherboard that has AGP 8x since they all seem to have PCI Express and I am not familar with how well those cards stack up.

My system is pretty much used to play games both online and regular games (City of Heroes, Everquest, Lineage 2, ROSE, Ragnarok Online, Vampire: The Masquerade, Sims 2, etc). I also use Photoshop and Premier to do graphic work, create anime music videos and various little things. So the system needs to be able to handle gaming, high resolutions and allow me to do my editing. This is currently what I'm using:

Motherboard: GigaByte GA-8KNXP
Memory: 2 512 MB DDRAM 3200 MUSHKIN (2-2-2)
Video Card: ATI A-I-W RADEON 9800PRO 128MB 8X
CPU: Pentium 4 2.8C GHz 800M
Hard Drive(s): 2 120GB Western Digital SATA
OS: Windows XP Pro

My current budget is around $1200. I had originally wanted to stick with GigaByte since I've always had excellecent results. It is also one of the few motherboards that I can get my Mushkin RAM to run at 2-2-2 stable and without having to overclock my system. I'd probably stick with the Western Digital SATA drives since I've always had good experience with them. The three main things I don't know is what kind of video card and possibly other motherboard suggetsions and what kind of Processor I should get. I was leaning towards the 3.4 but there seems to be a C, E, and LGT or other weird variations. LOL! Anyone have any good recommendations for a new build?
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  1. I would definatly lean toward athlon64 for a low budget high performance machine.
    Here is what I'm thinking:
    Athlon 64 3500+ ~$280-290
    GIGABYTE GA-K8NS Ultra-939 ~$110-120
    Mushkin 2x512mb PC3200 DDR ~$130-140
    PNY Geforce 6800 GT ~$380-390 (I'm an ati fan myself but this card has slightly better bang for the buck than the x800pro)
    Western Digital Raptor 74GB ~$150-160
    Antec True480 PSU ~$90-100

    I think that comes to somewhere around $1100-$1200

    Take the plextor and at least 1 120gb drives from your old comp. A server doesn't need a dvd burner and unless you want it to be a file server as well it doesn't really both 120gb drives. If you can't find a cd rom drive layin around to use on your old machine you can pickup 16x dvd drives for like $20 or less online.
    The case will be up to you bec you have to look at it all day. It isn't worth it to sacrafice other components for the case though. A $20 case will hold all your stuff just as good as a $200 case it just wont be as pretty. Its alwasy amusing when someone carrys in an extremely gheto looking computer to a lan and it ends up being better than everyone elses, lol.

    <A HREF="" target="_new">My precious...</A><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Folken on 02/05/05 06:22 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
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