To start with, this SSD will give you much faster everything than the Velociraptors and at a lower cost. Less storage of course, but the Velociraptors can't even touch SSDs for speed. The 160 GB version is $500, but if you're really trying to stay under $2k, stick with the 80 GB version. You could then get 1 or 2 1TB Samsung F3 or 1 TB Seagate 7200.12s for additional storage.
If you want to go 3-way SLI in the future be sure to select a motherboard which PCIE slots run all three @ x16... this one will handle the lanes as x16-x8-x4 and belive me... Fermi cards running in PCIEx4 will completley SUCK... and that would be your third card... as for the second one running x8 well maybe that will not be much of a trouble, but will not scale as good as you belive, again, due to the lanes thing. Oh by the way PCIE 3.0 is expected to come to new motherboards in Q2 2010... and it will rock!
Oh by the way PCIE 3.0 is expected to come to new motherboards in Q2 2010... and it will rock!
I don't think that is entirely accurate. My understanding is that the specifications of PCIE 3.0 will be released in Q2 2010, which will then have to undergo fairly rigorous testing and validation before they are released to the industry. When the specs were still expected during 2009 people thought it would be possible to have PCIE 3.0 gear on shelves during 2010. Now that the specs won't be released until April-June of 2010, there's definitely no guarantee of PCIE 3.0 hardware this year (quite the contrary, the president of PCI-SIG has said that he does not expect PCIE 3.0 compliant hardware until 2011).
coldsleep & restatement3dofted: I like your thinking. SSD with the 1 TB backup is an excellent idea.
grossemesser: point taken. Although I won't be going 3 way sli, I am considering a 9000 series card for physx in the future. Problem is I can't find a reasonably priced X58 mobo with two PCIe 16 2.0 slots.