I haven't built a system since 1999 and of course a lot has changed since then! I've done my research as best as I can but still needing advice on a few things. Primarily I'm looking for FAST performance in my chosen applications below.
I want to stay as close to $2000 USD as possible but I'm finding that very hard (limit is definitely 2500 USD). Keep in mind I've quoted Australian dollar prices (as i'm in Sydney), the lowest I can find on local online wholesalers.
System use in order of priority:
1. Video editing (Premiere pro)
2. other Adobe CS5 apps (mostly Photoshop)
...and of course a daily intensive web browsing, email and MS office use...
Here is what I've got so far, OS will be Win 7 64bit:
CPU: Intel i7-930... $350
MB: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R...$249
GFX: 2x Gigabyte 5850 via CrossFire... $700 total
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 (II) Series 100GB... $480
HDD: WD Caviar Black 2TB 7200rpm...$239
RAM: Corsair TR3X6G1600C8D 6GB (3x 2GB) PC-12800 (1600MHz) DDR3...$245
CPU cooler: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Plus...$37
PSU: Seasonic SS-750KM X-Series 750W PSU - 80Plus Gold...$222
Monitor: Acer G245HBMID 24inch Wide Black 5ms VGA DVI HDMI Spker...$225
I'm already at 2700 AUD (around 2400 USD). What do you guys think?
Obvious choices to save cost would be to trim the SSD (excuse the pun) but all my research tells me it'll make a substantial difference to boot times and performance of my chosen apps.
I also read a i7 860 would be great for video editing but over here it's the same price as a 930...
Should I be adding more RAM?
If I ditch the second GFX card will i still get good to high performance for the latest games eg battlefield, farcry, crysis etc etc??
Would also really appreciate suggestions for alternative monitors suitable for my uses (haven't put much thought into this one yet) and an elegant looking case (as the wife wants it to look as nice as a big computer case possibly can).
^ Have you thought about the new AMD 6-Core CPUs ?? For video editing, even they would be very good, and mainly you can save on the overall platform cost...
Some places where you can reduce the price -
1. PSU - Yes the Seasonic is a very good one, but check out the Corsair HX 650/ 750W PSU...they are very good and would save some money without any sacrifice in performance...
2. RAM - Check for GSKillz...you could get same speed RAM for less...
I agree with Gkay he has some nice tips, generally the AMD 6 cores work VERY well on multi thread programs i.e video editing, photoshop, and you would save a bit of sash as well. For professional work, 6 GB seems a little low, again as Gkay said you could find 8 or even 12 gb for a similiar price.
OMG people let's get back down to earth. This is a working pc mostly. No OC(or so I think anyways) and gaming not a priority.
460gtx sli is the cheapest high end GPU solution at the moment. Not only that but there are no downsides to it like it's thermi cousins. And most importantly it's got CUDA which speeds up cs5 and other proffesional apps. 460 sli may not be as upgradeable as a 5970 but it costs 150USD less and performs similarly while having CUDA.
Sure it's slightly less upgradable than a 5970. But when tri-460s get out of shape It'll be time to replace for something newer anyways.
And when you use nvidia you need intel. Which isn't a bad thing by miles as I would get an i7 anyways. It's simply got far better cores. They overclock much much much better and even at stock on 4-5 threaded apps a 930 will have an a rather large edge. with 6+ threads a 1090 will take the lead. but I prefer having an amazing quad than adequate hexa. But I suppose that's just an opinion.
Then people will argue am3 is a more future proof platform as it isn't dead yet. But seriously isn't upgrading to 980/990 a worthy upgrade? overall a 980 is around twice as good as a 930. And even if amd comes up with something that's 3 times better than a 1090t to fit in an older am3 mobo are you really comfortable putting such a cpu in a comparitivly lower class mobo?