AMD Athlon XP 2600+ 2.1ghz
MSI motherboard that came with original Compaq
Sapphire 9600xt 128mb at stock speeds
1 gig of PC2100 RAM
slow 120gb HD
crappy 200w PSU
Creative Sound Blaster LS 5.1
Logitech Z-5300 5.1-at least I have some decent speakers right 8)
-Want to upgade very soon, CAN wait until Conroe but would rather not.
-Must be AM2 or Conroe Compatible mobo
-already have monitor, keyboard, and mouse although I'll get a new LCD at some point
Don't worry abuot DX10 - it could be nearly a year away.
Why not look at a socket 939 system, which will easily fit in your budget (single core) and still be able to play virtually all games at 1280 x 1024. You can always look to update in a year / 18 months once all the new technology has bedded in then (Vista + DX10, and all the new hardware).
Well if I go single core I might as well go AM2 correct? That way I wouldn't have to upgrade RAM in the future. Newegg has some Semprons and low end Athlons I could buy. Would an overclocked Sempron hinder the performance of a 7900gt or x1800xt type card? Also if I do go AM2, any motherboard suggestions? I know that there aren't too many reviews on the ones out right now.
Yeah it doesn't seem that anyone knows too much about the motherboards. I will probably wait to see what this week brings because I've heard that June 5 Conroe supported motherboards will be available, but then again I heard that AM2 parts would be available on May 23 and not too many were.