-As I'm running two 19" LCD monitors, is the graphics card overkill for what the pc will be doing?
If I drop to the Q9550, DFI LT TR2 X48, 4GB Crucial PC2-6400, Palit Radeon HD 4850 and a 160GB SATA 2 WD (16MB Cache, 8.9ms seek), it would save about £240.
If the main thing this PC is doing would be video encoding and playing games such as SupCom, would there be a huge difference in performance for the price? My current rig has lasted almost seven years now, with incremental upgrades. So I am preferable looking to keep some sort of upgrade path open.
I am open to any other advice on parts (PSU power etc) - and thanks in advance
The HD 4870 is not overkill IMO, but it can handle two 19" monitors, no worries. Maybe it won't give you 60 fps, but it will still be decent. Your MB and PSU allow you to add a second one if needed.
The Q9550 build is good too, but I don't trust Palit much. Also, the Velociraptor would make your video encoding go twice as fast as the 160GB WD. I'm not kidding. An older WD with no perpendicular recording can do about 60 or 70 MB/s average read/write, while the Velociraptor can do 120.
Maybe get two WD 640GB disks (average rate 90 MB/s). That would be way better than a single hard disk, even than a Velociraptor, as long as compressing operations have the source file on a disk and the target file on the other.
With the graphics I'm not looking for 60fps or so, just something that can stay in the computer for a few years before it struggles on medium game settings and needs swapping/dual carding (bearing in mind both monitors will only be at 1248x1024, and I think SupCom is still the main game that actively uses two monitors?)
And thanks about the HD information, will have to look into that (tempted to get the VR for OS/gaming, and a 640GB for files/encoding target)
Checking the scan site, I'm guessing you mean the 32MB cache drives?