Black Friday is coming up, and I would really appreciate some advice on a new build before I pull the trigger next week. I'm aiming pretty high for this project and my budget is $2700. I'm hoping that these upcoming specials and discounts will get me some good deals that would make, say a $3000 build, possible with $2700.
With that said, this will be my first build ever. I'm an architecture major (recently switched from bioengineering) and I will be mainly using this computer for gaming and probably also as a workstation when I'm not able to go to the lab.
I'm not too certain about the compatibility of my parts, so advice would be appreciated there. Also, could anyone please recommend a motherboard that would best fit the parts below? Any deals that I've missed? And any improvements would be much appreciated.
Approximate Purchase Date: The week of Black Friday
Budget Range: $2200-$2700
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com
Country of Origin: United States
Parts Preferences: I stress quality over price, and would be very willingly to forfeit some of the budget for higher end, reliable, products.
Overclocking: Maybe. I've never overclocked before, but the performance boosts really tempt me too. If I were to overclock, it would be after I'm done the build itself.
SLI or Crossfire: Maybe. I'm thinking about running 2 GTX 470s. Would they be better than a single GTX 480?
It comes out to be $2250 with windows 7 and a combo deal on ASUS P6X58D premium. Where can I improve performance (within the $2700 budget) and what motherboard should I get? How's the compatibility? What is a good sound card and what else am I missing?
1. Who ever told you that a C300 is slower was not well informed. The C300 is almost always faster than the Vertex 2: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/152?vs=194
Crucial, Intel, OCZ, and pretty much every one else had firmware problems with their initial releases. These have been fixed for a while now.
2. If you plan to spend this much, realize that Sandy Bridge is just around the corner. And there is a VERY good chance that a midrange SB CPU will outperform your i7 950 by a noticeable margin assuming the preview against the i7 980X is accurate: http://www.anandtech.com/show/3871/the-sandy-bridge-pre...
3. I recommend you cut your budget down to $1500-1700 or so if you want this build on Black Friday/Cyber Monday. Save the rest and upgrade when LGA2011/Bulldozer comes out.
I agree with the above posts, assuming you're not running a 1920x1080 or higher res; get a 750-850W PSU and CF 6870s. And with Cyber Monday deals, you should be able to buy these or comparable parts for $1300 or less. IMO, if you spend more than $1800 on a single tower, you can find better ways to waste money.