Help with a new build please

Hello all,

First, and foremost, let me start by thanking you all for taking the time to read this post, and offering any advice you have for me. So, Thank you all!

I am looking at building a computer for Gaming at home (games such as WoW, Warhammer Online, possibly Crysis etc... and some future games like Diablo III etc... ), nothing spectacular, but a solid build with components that have the potential for overclocking later on if necessary. Looking at a build around $1500 and trying to get a good "Bang for the Buck" on most components. If possible I would like this system to be a viable gaming machine for such games for 2 - 3 years.

Here is a list of what I have looked at, and really like (as far as reviews, and info available) so far. I would appreciate any feedback and I really like to know the reasons behind decisions, so if you have an opinion (good, or bad) about a selection, please let me know what brought you to that decision. Also, if you suggest a different component, please let me know why. Again, Thank You! I know this is a lot to ask, but it is greatly appreciated.

I also have one other really basic question, but it has been bothering me, so I will simply ask. I was looking at a motherboard that supported memory slots with 1.5V (it was a DDR3 board) but had no information regarding ram that was rated for 1.7V etc ... do you need to stay strictly within the manufacturers information for the Ram to generally post or run properly, and if not, how do you know what the accepted range for the memory is?

Okay, heres my list :) ... be gentle, remember I'm new at this lol.

1 Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

1 XION AXP Lan-Party Edition AXP-800R14HE 800W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS 12V 2.92 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
$149.99 ($20.00 Mail-in Rebate reduces price to $129.99)
(not sure I really need something this big, but if I expand later on, I want to make sure I don't over tax a PSU and would rather have a bit more, than not enough)

1 GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
$134.99 ($20.00 Mail-in Rebate reduces price to $114.99)
(love the reviews and possibility of this board, plus it apears that DDR3 is not yet worth the higher investment when DDR2 is almost comparable at lower timings and a much cheaper price, but again, please let me know what you think)

1 Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80570E8500 - Retail
(not sure if the E8600 is worth the extra $80.00, although the E8500 doesnt appear to have E0 Step but the C0 and not sure how much that will effect the possibility of overclocing later)

1 XIGMATEK dark knight - s1283 120mm CPU Cooler - Retail
(really like the looks and reviews of the Core Contact Freezer by Sunbeam, but you have to do some work to get it on the board I am currently looking at, so not sure if it is worth it)

2 G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1100 (PC2 8800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-8800CL5D-4GBPI - Retail
$159.98 ($79.99 each)

1 SPARKLE P980X+ GeForce 9800 GTX+ 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
(never dealt with Sparkle before, but havent seen a review for em thats less than 4/5, and almost all were 5/5 so very intrigued with the build and potential of this card, i know its a bit more $, but looks promising)

2 Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
$129.98 ($64.99 each)

1 SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S223Q - OEM
Verbatim 4.7GB 16X DVD-R LightScribe 1.2 30 Packs Disc - OEM
-$5.00 Combo $42.98

1 Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM

1 Scythe KM02-BK 5.25" Bay Fan Controller - Retail

1 Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - OEM

1 BELKIN BE112230-08 8 ft. 12 Outlets 3940 Joules Surge Protector with Telephone And Coaxial Protection - Retail

So, there it is. I am sure it could probably use a ton of tweaking, but again, any input is appreciated and constructive criticism is always welcome.
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  1. I'd go for regular pc6400 memory; newegg, fry's or zipzoomfly always have 4 gigs for less than $40 after rebate; zip had some patriot for $19.99, but sold out this morning. Newegg had a pc power and cooling 750w for $69.99 after rebate.
  2. Only thing i would change in this setup is the psu, ram and vid. card. westerm digital caviar eh.. does the job hopefully.

    PSU OCZ, thermaltake, antec.

    RAM - OCZ Reaper

    and for gaming your video card needs to change.

    HD 4850 or HD 4870.

    the Sapphire 4870 1gb is down to $200 and the sapphire 4870 512mb is under $200

    will give your more info after work.
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