1) Are there any areas that I could potentially gain great performance for minimal money?
2) With the memory chosen, will timing and latency be an issue?
3) I have considered a SSD but am leery due to rumors of instability and high prices/lower capacity. Would my best course of action be to begin with a reliable 1TB Sata 6gb/sec drive and then upgrade to SSD primary (OS and heavy usage programs) down the road as prices drop?
4) I listed the Thermaltake Toughpower because that is what is currently running my PC at home and I was considering reusing the same P/S to save money. Any issues with doing this? Or any recommendations on a modular CrossFire ready and efficient P/S for this build? I know nothing about them except if you choose the wrong one, major problems occur.
Thank you greatly for your time and your responses.
P.S. I apologize for not following the standard format for posting such a thread when I first posted. I immediately returned and edited as soon as I realized my mistake. Although not perfect, I hope this is a bit more clear.
1) If all you are doing is gaming switch to the amd phenom II 955 black edition processor which will save you alot of money, I read that you did not wan't to OC but the black edition processors OC extremely easily on air and will give you excellent performance in games since most games only utilize 3 cores. So 6 cores is probably not extremely necessary.
I would also try to find a pair of ram that has C7 timings, has better latency which will improve frame rates slightly.
The asus crosshair formula IV is a great high end AM3 board, but if you dont need the absolute best Gigabyte and Asus have some excellent bang for your buck AM3 boards with sata3 and usb3.0 for around $130-140.
Video card choice is great for a single card choice, I really like AMD's offerings. However if you aren't extremely impatient AMD should be releasing their 6970/6990 cards this month so I would definitely wait for those. Also XFX is a great brand because of their double lifetime warranty, cant beat that.
For a power supply, 750W power supply would be plenty for your build. However if you ever plan on xfiring I would get an 850W silver plus certified PSU. A good one would be the corsair HX850W.
2) It won't be a huge problem but generally ram with lower timings have better latency and improve frame rates slightly.
3) In short yes, there are some great 1TB 7200rpm drives that would work well for boot drives. They won't match SSD in terms of performance but work great for both storage and boot drives. Samsung spinpoint F3 1TB is a good HDD.
4) Seems like an okay PSU, but after reading the reviews I would be questionable of it's quality. Anyway if it works for you it wil probably be fine.
Definitely better, only reason I chose the 955 over 965 is because if you were planning on oc'ing urself, you could get the 3.4 ghz clock speed of the 965 with the 955 by just changing the multiplier (black edition processors have unlocked multipliers). But in all honesty its up to you. The 965 is great value as well. I would also suggest bundling up items if they go together to save some more money but overall looks great.
I would suggest xfire 6850 for $340 over the 5870 or wait till the 69xx series comes out. HDD wise i would get the 1tb f3 samsung that comes out to $54 with promo code the wd hdd sata 6 has alot of issues doa and such not very reliable for a new build main hdd