Case: Antec Nine Hundred Case
Video Card: ATI Radeon 3870 X2
Power Supply: OCZ GameXtreme 850
Motherboard: Asus Formula Maximus X38 board
Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 2.5GHz
RAM: 4GB OCZ PC2-6400C4 800MHz Reaper
HDD: Western Digital Raptor WD1500
Optical Dive: Pioneer DVR-215BK 20x
Sound Card: Creative Soundblaster Fatal1ty X-Fi Platinum Champion Series
How cheap do you think I'd be able to get that build for? It looks to me like it'd run well over $1000. What could/should I change to keep it below that? IDEALLY, under $850, but I doubt that's a possibility without sacrificing performance. It should be noted that I'm in Canada, so anywhere that can't ship here isn't really an option, unless I were to go to the states, in which case I don't know what duties I'd have to pay when bringing parts back.
I was considering the Q6600 instead of the Q9300, as well as 2 8800GT's instead of the 3870 X2, if it would keep cost down significantly. The HDD is also of concern to me, should I go with a 10,000RPM and another slower, larger drive, or simply one big slow beast? I think the sound card might be unnecessary, what cheaper alternatives would you recommend I go for?
I know that's a lot of information and a lot to ask for, but any answers however incomplete would be fantastic, and much appreciated.
Get an 2 HD 4850s, even a single 4850 will outperform the HD 3870 X2 on most cases. I would get the Q6600 over the Q9300, especially if it'll save you some money. Also just get an X-Fi Xtreme Gamer, the extra cost for the Platinum isn't worth it, trust me... I have an X-Fi myself.
Raptors are honestly a waste of money, with the newer 7200RPM drives you shouldn't be able to even feel that much of a difference, I say get a WD Caviar 640GB and be done with it. You'll get the best out of both worlds.
CPU - Q6600 and overclock it
Graphic card -HD 4850 crossfire them on that board later if you need more performance.
HD - Western Digital SATA 640GB 7200rpm
I'd wait on the sound card till you've worked with the sound on the motherboard.