shooting for around 800 bucks, with monitor and os. any advice to lower the cost without losing performance would be great, this is my first build, but i'm somewhat familiar with hardware. kind of. right now i believe that the processor is my weak link, but let me know if i'm wrong, thanks!
To be honest that looks like a professional build. I could not do any better for that price. The x3 445 is a great little budget chip that may even unlock into a quad, and even if not overclocks pretty well. Great use of combos.
That ram is marginally faster and it would add about $30 to the build while adding basically no performance at all unless all you ever do is run memory benchmarks.
The hard drive is definitely better however.
The Hard Drive is better. I did not even click to see what you had selected as the 500GB Samsung Spinpoint F3 has been $54 for months now so I just assumed that is what you had chosen. The rest of your build looks great.