PARTS PREFERENCES: I currently would like an AMD processor. It may seem a touch 'fanboyish' but I had been kinda waiting for them to make a comeback. The only other specific would be a nice looking motherboard that's not rainbow colored that fits the needs of my system and provides a little future proofing. I currently bought an Antec 902 case (900 revision), so I'm good there.
OVERCLOCKING: Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe
MONITOR RESOLUTION: I like the resolutions 1024x768 or even better 1280x1024. Sadly I took the route to use my 32" HD TV as a monitor, mainly cause at the time I couldn't afford another. I'm unsure if that's adding stress/heat to my system trying to output to that.
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Quiet would be nice. I liked Nvidia back in the day, but I heard ATIs play nicer with AMD chips, and AMD has recovered alot of ground. I don't need PhysX and am happy as long as I can play my games without having to worry about overheats, crashes, or power shortages as opposed to the biggest bling my computer can wag. I'm open to new technologies and overclocking, though my experience with overclocking is little. The current setup I was looking at was this...
I'd probably go with this Gigabyte motherboard strictly for CPU support. This board accepts your selected CPU without requiring a BIOS upgrade. It's also $40 less.
I tend to stay away from overclocking (just me), so I'd probably go with DDR3-1333 as opposed to DDR3-1600(OC) RAM.
A quiet PC is nice, but I'd rather have spent $600 on a noisy PC that I can use than a $600 silent PC that doesn't do what I want. You can probably drop the Arctic Silver 5 and the Zalman cooler and put that cash towards this graphics card - The Sapphire HD 4670 GDDR3 for another $70. You're also missing a hard drive. You can pick up this Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB drive for $55.
Total price shipped is still under $600 before rebates.
Whoops! I forgot to mention I already had a hard drive. Is the 1600 overclocked as is? I thought that was a pre-overclocked setting. Also, mind you, I don't want things to overheat. I heard good things about the 955's stock cooler but still.
You say that your main usage will be gaming, but no video card? Personally I would drop the quad core and get a decent dual or triple core to save some money and throw in a decent video card. If you don't care about future proofing a 9800gt will murder at 1280x1024. Also don't underestimate the value of a newer hard drive. I recently got the samsung f3 1tb and noticed a huge difference in speed as apposed to my 4 year old drive.
KK just did a build and you have plenty of budget left over if you are reusing case psu and hard drive... also do you need a dvd burner?
I did mention I had a 7600GT OC, or at least I believed I did. That will probably last me till I have more money as everything else shy of the hard drive and optical disc is old. I did spy a look at one of the ATI 5750s, but as I said, when I have more money. This is mainly to update my computer and hopefully allow for growth on the graphics card at a later date.