I posted a little while ago with the specs I am intending for my next computer:
Thermaltake Toughpower 850W W0131
MSI P6N Diamond
Intel Core 2 Duo E6750
Zalman CNPS9700-NT nVidia Tritium Super Aero Flower Cooler
4Gb (4 x 1Gb) Crucial Ballistix PC2-6400
MSI 8800GTX OC edition
2 x 150 Gb Western Digital Raptor
1 x 500 Gb Western Digital MyBook Premium ES
Optiarc AD7170S-0B DVD-RW
Netgear WPN311 Wireless PCI adapter
Logitech Ultra Flat Keyboard
Logitech MX Revolution Mouse
LG L245WP-BN Monitor
Now, I got all the little bits already (case, PSU, DVD-RW, mouse, keyboard) and I'm planning to order the rest halfway October. Now, I know there are some of you out there who'll say I'm wasting my money on the Raptors or that the Zalman isn't the best cooler out there. However, I have made my decision on those items. The thing that I'm not sure about is the E6850 and the 8800GTX. With the CPU I'm thinking maybe I should get the E6750, but I don't know how much performance I lose there. I'm mainly interested in RTS, Supreme Commander is very CPU intense and I was wondering if anyone has seen the difference between the 2 there?
I know the 9800GTX (or whatever they're going to call it) is coming out late this year and I'm not sure if I should wait for that. Does anyone know if it's going to be PCI-E 2.0 and/or if it'll slot into my chosen motherboard?
I have been thinking about this too. Personally, when to build relies heavily on what you want and how long you want it to last. Personally, I plan to build a computer that will last at least 4 years with a few upgrades here and there. If you can wait/want to save money I would recomend waiting until November when companies have their Black Friday sales (right after thanksgiving).
As for the technologies. The new intel x38 chipset is supposed to have PCIe 2.0 and DDR 3 on it. The PCIe 2.0 does double the memory bandwidth, but it also increases the watts that can go through the mobo to the graphics card. The x38 chipset shoudl be out by late september early october. Waiting until November means the price will drop some. Also the G92 nvidia refresh is around the corner, some say october, others say november. When they come out the prices of the current 8800's will drop, as well as they may have PCIe 2.0 cards.
Personally I am going for the long term saver, I will get a cheap dual core proc on black friday, as well as a used graphics card, or a cheap ($50-$100) but effective one (on par with geforce 7900 gs). Then a year or two later after the 45nm procs have been released, and drop in price I will upgrade my proc, also I will get the 9800 gtx graphics card after it has been out for a while to have the prices mellow out.
I will do my build this way b/c most the games out now will run on my initial build, and Crysis will run on lower settings, then a year later the computer will run all gamesout plus the next years games with ease.
One last thing to consider is that the LGA 775 socket will end soon from intel, in a year or two they will switch it out I believe. Personally I like to build a computer when the current technology has been fully developed and bugs worked out. Basically equivolent of building a pentium 4 with 800 fsb just before the EE came out which the pentium Ds shortly follwed. My P4 handled everything I needed it to back then, and it still is kicking today.
Also, about the HD's, I would go for one raptor for a primary HD with Vista on it as well as any temp files, and then go with 2 x 500 GB WD's in a raid for data storage and games.