I've been reading through the threads here, and the advice here seems phenomenal. I haven't built a home system in several years (at work we purchase Dell's), so was hoping to get some up to date hardware recommendations. Everyone seems to have really got the price points worked out well here. So without any more chit-chat:
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Before the end of the year (targeting Black Friday purchases would work if that helps much)
BUDGET RANGE: $800 before rebates preferably. That's not a hard and fast limit, if there's a good argument to go as high as even $1000.
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Internet, photos and documents, mid-size databases, light modeling (GIS), Casual gaming
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor (22" Dell Ultrasharp), speakers, OS (Windows 7 Enterprise/Ultimate 64 bit)
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel based-system (I'm just more familiar with them)
OVERCLOCKING: Maybe (but unlikely unless it would be stupid not to)
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No
MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I need RAID 1, for me the peace of mind is worth the $50-$100 required for the extra hard drive (I know it's not a sub for backups). I assume almost any MB will do it on-board these days. I'd like a minimum of 4 GB of RAM, maybe 6 GB if anyone can squeeze a triple channel system in. I get the OS for virtually free (legally) through work, so no worries there. On-board audio is fine with me as well.