Everything is great, the only thing I would change would be.. The 500gb, change it to the 640gb version, and the fan get something higher quality like a yate loon or kaze, because I assume you're using it as intake.
Newegg is offering a free upgrade from Vista to W7, it might be over though. In any case you could just get a pre-ordered W7 (Might also be over) for cheap and use RC before the release.
I will upgrade to the western digital 640gb version, what about the cpu fan? Will I be able to get by with the one that comes with the cpu or will I need to upgrade to something better? If I should, any suggestions?
Since you are buying all new system, I would recommend you price it out as ALL AM3 newer parts - because then you are good for future upgrades - i.e. the future is ALL AM3 thru 2010.
The mobo is excellent - but there is a comparable mobo with Socket AM3.
An AM3 sys will cost slightly more - but the upgradability is desirable.
You could change the quad idea, if you want - it is useless in gaming - and get a Ph II 550BE cpu @stock 3.1Ghz - it oclox EZ above 3.6++.
But you say you won't be oclox anyway - yeh right - when you discover AOD AMD Over Drive, and how easy it is to oclox, you might just try it - the Black Edition makes that way too easy with AOD - it's a mouseclick - you can boost it to 3.4 with stock heat sink fan and be safe 24/7. But that's not necessary either. You won't lack performance in gaming - games are single or dual threaded. Triple core is also an option. Or quad, if that's what you want.
Future games might go quad threaded - but that's my point - you don't need quad now - and future = you can upgrade to quad WHEN NEEDED - it's a drop-in cpu and job done!
What you designed here is good - but going to AM3 will give you better futureproofing - cos all the new stuff is AM3.
I am planning this same sys myself. I will use a 750w PSU to cover this future upgrade idea where I might go quad or xfire, etc and might need more power in future, so I won't have to upgrade the PSU. That's minor.
So unless you save a lot by using ddr2 and AM2+ parts, or unless your budget is tight - that's my recommendation. The other thing to consider is that AM3 CPU's are fully backward-compatible with socket AM2+ (check with mobomaker for a bios upgrade to make this possible). That can change the game a little - you can think about those possibilities. But that locks you into only the ram type really, the big diff is bandwidth of ddr3 - currently that give approx 5% perf boost only.
The thing to do as I already said - compare price difference of all AM3 parts.
Congrats on a Smarter Choice. And sleep well knowing you did not support monopoly and antitrust activity; but instead supported collaboration. o yeh, I am really into it. I used to hang at amdzone.
Only two changes I would suggest:
1. a 64bit OS --xp64 or vista64 (you can buy vista64 with the free win7upgrade and just install windows7 beta and skip vista altogether if you like.
2. don't buy a single hard drive, buy two and tell the motherboard to put them in raid0. two 250gb in raid0 are faster than one 500gb, or two 320gb raid0 instead of one 640gb. you'll get an improvement in many many aspects of usage.
A. take a quick look for a silver (or bronze) rated power supply at the same price range if you want to save a few $ on electrical.
B. personally, i'd go for a scythe case fan instead
c. everything else looks great, the am2 build is very stable and will last you 5+years while allowing you to upgrade componentry along the way if you wish.
One question: why does everybody recomend the Wd caviar black 640gb over all other hard disks? can anyone explain why it has better performance then the others (even better then the 1tera version?)
I have no clue why it is said to be so good but I just bought one because I always read here how great it is.
Back to the topic, your system is good the way it is.
If you would like to have upgradeability I would reckomend you the Phenom II x3 720, if you dont plan to upgrade just get the system you wanted in the first place.
wd caviar black is faster than the caviar green. there is some uncertainty as to how well the green drives will hold up over time due to their having a variable speed motor 5400-7200 instead of only 7200. the price on the black is not significantly more expensive...