Another $1000ish New Build -From a Newb!-

I want a new system that will last for 3-5 years with options to upgrade perhaps along the way. I'm budgeting for around $1000+ I'm focusing on a game oriented machine. It should also be noted that I'm interested in safely overclocking, so any comments, insights, or suggestions along those lines would be appreciated.

So far I've accumulated a lot of suggestions, read a lot of articles, and other new build posts and have come up with the following. Some of these are ORs because I'm really not sure which direction to go.

Processor - E8500 Wolfdale 3.16

Ram - Kingston Hyper X 4gb


Ram - G.Skill PI Black 4gb

Mother Board - I can't even come up with a suggestion, obviously a P45 but which and at which price point to fit this rig?

Video Card - Sapphire 4870 1gb
(I've selected this video card so that down the road I can crossfire it and be "back in the game" as far as performance)

Hard Drives - 2x Western Digital Caviar SE16
(I've read that running a RAID array is the way to go for a gaming machine, or is that a misunderstanding on my part?)

(PSUs are almost as bewildering as mother boards, is this a worthy selection, and will it fit the bill for safe over clocking and a future Crossfire configuration?)

Cooler and Bracket - XIGMATEK HDT-S1284EE 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler
XIGMATEK ACK-I7753 Retention Bracket For 4 heatpipes


First, I want to know if I'm making any foolish mistakes with these part choices.

Second, which RAM kit should I go with and explain why.

Third, could somebody please recommend a reasonable P45 that will allow me to do some safe overclocking and will support my option to crossfire later.

Last, If you are going to recommend an alternative part choice, please explain why.

I think this forum is awesome by the way, thanks for all your help and advice in advance.

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  1. I would definitely go with the G.Skill RAM. The standard voltage for DDR2 RAM is 1.8v. Anything over that is factory overclocked/overvolted. DDR2 800 RAM will still allow you to OC the E8500 to 3.8GHz which is plenty since you said you were aiming for a "safe overclock".

    I've had great luck with Gigabyte boards lately. This one is an awesome overclocker:

    GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $136.99 -$20.00 MIR

    The P5Q Pro is also pretty popular around here.

    ASUS P5Q Pro LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $114.99 -$15.00 MIR

    This PC Power & Cooling PSU is on sale right now for less than the 750TX.

    PC Power & Cooling S75QB 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI NVIDIA SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail $114.99 -$35.00 MIR
  2. As shortstuff_mt said, go with the P5Q Pro and go with the bundle deal with the E8400 instead of the E8500 you have picked out. Will save yourself $50 :)
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