Honestly... to be bold... I'd drop the video card to 7950GT. The 7950GT goes for $250 or less and would be just fine for everything. A 8800GT is a really great card, but its a lot of wasted horsepower right now and wasted dollars that could be used on a better CPU or on a real soundcard if you value sound that much. The price will most likely drop and you can get that great card for the price it should be ($200 not $450) soon.
A X-FI Fatal1ty Gamer Pro goes for $150 and you'd need a decent speaker set or sound system to get the real sound out of it. To save money, drop the card and go on board... not worth your time with an SE. Great sound could go for as much as your 8800GT or more.
Motherboard... I'd go with what qwazzy is saying... ASUS or ABIT. I've had little issues with both. Could go down to a $110 board versus a $150 if you don't intend on using RAID.
I agree with the suggestion to go with 1 GB right now... $250 is steep for 2 GB. I'm betting the price will drop considering some motherboards can take 16 GB now and Vista will actually support going over 4 GB.
Disagree with dropping the HS/F... I never would go with stock considering how noisy they are or the job they do with cooling. If your like me, I like my CPU running at 33-35 C. However, I bet you could find a cheaper HS/F than $60 that'll be just as good.
Curious what your final setup will be and what you'll decide but thats my 2 cents.
Take that to 1GB of ram. I would personally go with 1 1GB stick to leave room for upgrading in the future.
That will save you about $125 Savings: $125
drop the HSF or go with an Arctic Freezer 7 Pro. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1683...
that will save you about $35 and you can find it for 5-10 buck cheaper if you try another site saving you about $40. Also you won't need the Arctic Silver 5(the Arctic Freezer 7 Pro comes with pre applied paste) so that will save you another $6 Savings: $70 stock HSF or $45 AF7P
Also I agree that you should drop the Soundcard until you can get a good one and just use your mobo sound.
that will save you $26 Savings: $26
you can shave off a few more dollars by going with the gigabyte GA 965P S3 motherboard. Overclocks well and only difference formt he DS3 is lack of solid state capacitors that from what I've read are hype anyway. Going down to 1 gig of ram is a mistake since games like Battlefield 2 and a great deal of other titles comming out use lots of ram. Your video card will probably make up the difference with raw horsepower however till you upgrade later.
U also want to get Win Vista if u want to play DX10 titles cause win xp wont offer dx10. And u might want to wait for the new AMDs coming out later this month wish they claim to recrown again. Right now intel cant declare winner until wee see the new amds.
I find that you will always be waiting for the next best thing if you do that and will never actually buy a pc. Although waiting for the R600 may be a good idea... but its not due out until mid feb I believe.
I believe the first DX10 Games arent coming out for a good 8 months or so? Correct me if i'm wrong