I thought I could just run dual channel with a 1366 board. I've seen benchmarks where the dual channel actually outperforms the tri channel in most everyday task. Regardless, I was thinking that I could do dual channel now and then later add a third stick once I felt I needed it.
1st don't forget about Amazon and tigerdirect=both no sales tax and free shipping
2nd 1156(875k) is more efficent then the 1366(930)
3rd go ATI 5850 or 5870= less heat and less power then Nvidia ...plus runs great 0on games
4th PSU should be at least 750 ...go higher( 850 or 1050) if you plan on SLi or crossfire later
For gaming , start with the graphics card. At 1920 x 1200 resolution, you will get exceptional performance with 5850 that should cost about $310. If your budget permits, the 5870 or GTX470 are also good. By the time you need/want more, then you have options. Either sell your 5850 and get the next best single card, or get another 5850 for crossfire. Only if you can get a 2560 x 1600 monitor would you need more. If you think you might ever crossfire, then I would favor the 1336 socket
Either cpu will drive the strongest graphics configuration out there today. Great buy on both at $199.
You can probably market the 875K for a bit more than the 930 because it is newer. Neither is "future proof" The next generation from Intel(sandy bridge 32nm) will use a different socket. But what you build should serve you well past sandy bridge. Do not worry about that.
For a hard drive, see if you can find the newly announced Seagate momentus XT hybrid drive. It will be about $130 for a 500gb drive that has some MLC cache to improve performance. I like using a SSD for the OS and frequently used apps. You could get a Kingston 64gb for $150 or so, or an Intel 80gb for $210. Add a cheap storage drive. But... if you wait until fall, expect the prices to drop.
Motherboards now are shipping with 6gb sata and usb 3.0 Consider if you will use those features. 6gb sata may come into play with newer and faster SSD's. usb3.0 may be useful for fast external backup. On a new system today, I think I would look for those features. If you do only one thing at a time, like gaming, then 4gb is fine. If you will multitask, then more ram is better; 6gb or 8gb. Windows-7 will try to make use of all the ram you give it, and ram is relatively cheap.
You can get 1080p(1920 x 1080) monitors cheaper than 1920 x 1200. But, I think I would pay the extra for a very good monitor. It is more future proof than the rest of your system.
For any ram you are considering, do your own homework.
Go to the ram vendor's web site, and access their configurator.
Corsair, Kingston, Patriot, OCZ and others have them.
Their compatibility list is more current than the motherboard vendor's QVL lists which rarely get updated.
Enter your mobo or PC, and get a list of compatible ram sticks.
Cpu performance is not very sensitive to ram speeds.
If you look at real application and game benchmarks(vs. synthetic tests),
you will see negligible difference in performance between the slowest DDR2 and the fastest DDR3 ram.
Perhaps 1-2%. Not worth it to me.
Don't pay extra for faster ram or better timings unless you are a maximum overclocker.
if you want fast storage for load times then go with SSD they are little more but they run fast and then you can get a 500g or higher hdd for storage. SSD i would go for intel x25m 80gb...they are the best in SSD but of course it is more expandsive. If u don't want to spend much then i would look into OCZ agility 2 or vertex 2 but price is not that much of a difference. HDD i would go for samsung spinpoint f3 has the best performance...is not then Western Digital black or Seagate 7200
PSU i would go for Corsair, Seasonic or Antec and 750w is enough if you are going to overclock...if not....650w is fine...even if you crossfire
Ram i would suggest Gskill ram...better price and good ram
Case i would go for the Antec 300 illusion....i think is only sold at newegg and is better then the antec 300...more fans
you haven't mentioned anything about you GPU yet but i'll suggest radeon 5850 or 5870 will be able to run at that resolution
So couldn't I just buy a dual channel set and install it? I didn't know I had to install memory in each channel. Am I wrong?
You can install any number of sticks up to the motherboard's max. Ram is not single/dual/triple channel by itself. To get dual channel, you need even numbers of sticks on each channel. To get triple channel, you need three sets of sticks. Some motherboards can do dual channel with unbalanced sticks. In truth, the nehalem memory controllers are so good that they can keep the cpu fed with ram data fast enough so that there is minimal impact on real application performance or FPS. Think on the order of 1-2%.
It is more important to get sufficient ram. One extra stick will get you more performance than faster speed or better timings. I think that 6gb is the sweet spot for most of us; that implies a 1366 motherboard for triple channel.