I've been working with my hands since I was very young, and I've decided to make my own computer. Make a new nightstand? Let's go to Home Depot. Change your oil? Gotcha. Mittens for your nephew? You called the right girl. This, on the other hand, is turning out to be harder than I expected.
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: As soon as possible.
BUDGET RANGE: Around 2 grand(ish).
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming for me, photoshop stuff for work.
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, mouse, speakers.
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: SE USA
PARTS PREFERENCES: I've only had Intel CPUs, and I'd rather stick with them because they haven't let me down yet. My last three cars have been Toyotas, and I feel the same way about them.
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: I'd like to keep that an option in the future if the 5870 isn't doing it anymore.
MONITOR RESOLUTION: Here's the thing about that - I'm buying a little 1920x1280 right now, but I'll be getting a big honking monster of a monitor next year.
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'll get to that after I show you what I have so far.
PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply I don't know that I need more than 750, but if I ever decide to go dual GPUs? And with the overclocking and such, it just seemed safe. I tried an online power calculator for this, but if there's anything that I learned from match.com, it's that you can't trust anything that anyone tells you on the internet. Which is why I'm asking you here. On the internet. Maybe I didn't think this out very well.
Case: I'm having a really hard time with this one, and here's where I really need some help. I want something that's got good cooling and plenty of room for that giant video card. Everyone likes the HAF 932, but I'm a girl, and I don't want something that looks like Darth Vader's dehumidifier in my bedroom. I don't mind paying extra for something pretty, but it can't be too crazy. If you can find me something simple and nice to look at that would be great. I don't mind spending up to $200 for it. I'm looking for something with Ikea sensibilities here, but just plain is okay too. Any suggestions?
Wireless Adapter: Not a clue here. Should I just get whatever is ranked best on Newegg?
Anyway, thanks for your help. Please let me know if I've any of these parts don't work together, and I'd love to hear your advice on the RAM. And please, please, please for the love whatever, help me find a nice case.
Yeah, intel will be dumping out everything, they never support a chipset more than 2 years. I'm a bit of an AMD fanboy, so I'll just mention that the X6 1090T is really nice with Photoshop C5.
With the i7 you'll want triple-channel ram, meaning 3 (3x1GB) , 6 (3x2GB or 6x1GB), or 12 (3x4gb, 6x2gb) Gigs of RAM. G.Skill is probly the least expensive, reliable brand of RAM right now. 6 GB in a 3x2GB is probably all you need for heavy manipulation. 4 is all most games use.
The online Power calculator is actually pretty good. If you're worried, set the TDP and Peak loads to 100%, add 20-30% capacitor aging, and a couple USB devices, and run with the wattage that suggests, rounded up to the nearest 100.
A 750 should be more than plenty with the single 5870. if you need to crossfire it, an 850 won't be enough, you'll want a 1000.
For the case, Look here. This guy selected 114 cases from Under $50 to over $200, any of them will make great game cases, though for some you might have to buy extra fans. Pick the one you like, it'll link to that case on Newegg.
If its not girly enough, any case can be stripped down to bare metal and spray painted pink with rainbow stickers!
as for wireless. Wireless N is fast, but for gaming, I generally still prefer an old fashioned ethernet cable. Still faster and much less threat of interference. If you want it, I recommend one of the 3 main wireless brands: Netgear, D-Link, and Linksys
Your existing monitor is probably fine, and its actually a nice one. still the really big displays are always nice.