I have a bit of a tough decision ahead of me, and I was hoping for some advice from the good folks here at Tom's. I will be building a system for my friend, but I will also be building a system for me. I'm going to focus this thread on mainly his system, but he will be getting parts from my old system and I need some help figuring some things out. First, let's look at his requests.
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: 1 week
BUDGET RANGE: $600
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, multimedia, internet
Now onto the tricky stuff. I will be building a Core i7 system in addition to my friend's build, but I'm going to be upgrading some components. The PC P&C Silencer 610W that I currently have will be going to my friend (as shown on the wishlist) and I will most likely be going with a PC P&C Silencer 750W to replace it. I want to get a card that will tide me over at 1900x1200 until decently cooled DX11 cards come around and hopefully some price cuts (5 months from now). When I upgrade to a DX11 card, I will sell my card to my friend and he will then have a nice CF/SLI setup for his resolution.
So, what card should we both get now so that they will match when I decide to get a new card in 5 months, and when he goes CF/SLI down the road? I was thinking something like a HD4850 or HD4770 but I'm not sure. Also, what PS should I get so I can comfortably CF/SLI down the road?
Also, if you want to to save a little cash on your own system, especially if you are only going with the i7 920, you may want to check out the higher end phenom 2's. For what you are doing, maybe consider like a phenom 2 955 or 965. The 955 is 200 on newegg, which would save you like 80 bucks vs the i7. Look at some benchies, but from what I've seen, the phenom 2's are in the same general areas for gaming as some of the lower i7's such as the 920. Plus the phenom 2 should have some upgrade options down the road. Then for your gaming, maybe pick up a 4870 1 gb for better performance until you upgrade.
In fact I think newegg has an asus 790 gx mobo in a combo with the 955 for 316 right now. So something to consider there.
Thanks for the advice on the Phenom II, but I'm going to stay with the i7. I'm going to be doing tons of video transcoding, and the i7 seems to display a clear advantage with multi-GPU setups (what I will be eventually doing).
So it seems like a HD4850 would be the best for the time being, and for my friend when I upgrade to DX11?