First real build in seven years


I've decided to do a piecewise approach to building my system.

Here is a rundown of the system specifications:

 ☒ CPU             : Intel Core i7-980X Extreme Edition Gulftown 3.33GHz            $1,079.99
 ☐ Memory        : Mushkin Enhanced Blackline 24GB (6x4GB in two 3x4GB packages)  $1,299.98
 ☐ Motherboard  : EVGA 170-BL-E762-A1 LGA 1366 Intel X58 4-WAY SLI Classified    $  479.99
 ☐ PSU             : Thermaltake Toughpower W0133RU 1200W                           $  364.99
 ☐ GPU             : Two EVGA 015-P3-1482-AR GeForce GTX 480                        $1,079.98
 ☐ SSD             : Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2MH160G2R5 2.5" 160GB              $  459.99
 ☒ Case            : LIAN LI PC-P80 Black Aluminum ATX Full Tower Computer Case     $  299.99
 ☐ Optical         : LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer iHAS424-98 LightScribe Support          $   31.99
 ☐ Operating System: Windows 7 Ultimate - OEM                                       $  174.99
    Total (current) :                                                                $5,271.89
    Remaining       :                                                                $3,891.91
The first purchase is for $1,412.96, and consists of the CPU and the Full-tower case. If you're wondering why I'm selecting high-end elements to this build, it's because I do not build systems very often. My current system is a (prebuilt) laptop that has a 2.00 GHz Pentium M with 1 GB of ram and a 100 GB hard drive. The focus on the hard drive is speed, not size. I intend to use this for gaming and software development, a large portion of what I code can be considered research, which takes a lot of memory and processor power (even if I only utilize one core at this point and time, given time I can adjust.)

Suggestions are welcome; however, please don't suggest something simply because it'll save me money. I don't plan on overclocking the CPU nor altering the GPU's speeds, until I understand how, so comparable performance will be difficult to sell in an i7 920.
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  1. Well, why not get another GTX 480, and make use of that EVGA X58 4-Way SLI Classified?
    Another thing I'd improve on would be the PSU - I would get an Antec True Power Quattro 1200W for $105 less.

    With a budget like yours, might as well get a Blu-Ray drive.
  2. The GPUs are the last component of the system, primarily because I want to ensure that the GTX 480 GPUs will be stable, and perhaps decide by then whether there will be a water cooling option available (I think there are water blocks for these GPUs, but I haven't done enough research on them yet). I want to ensure that when I get the setup, there are no foreseeable issues with it, the GTX 480 puts out a lot of heat, and I fear putting three or four of them in too close a proximity, without alternative cooling, bad things could happen if they're left for a long period of time.
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