Gaming & Photo/Vid Editing New Build $1200-$1600

I am getting a bonus for around $1500. While I'd love to NOT spend it all, I wouldn't mind since I haven't had a new PC in almost 6 years. I am a heavy gamer that loves all the newest games at the highest settings possible. And my rig is so old I can't even play any of the newer games so I am going insane. I also do a lot of professional video and photo editing. I use many heavy programs and sometimes simultaneously (Photoshop and Premiere etc.). I also have to have dual monitors if not more than two. I have all the monitors and peripherals I need. This is just for the PC.

Please pardon any "generalized" answers to the template questions. Think of this post as "If you were me, and just handed that money and told to build a good PC for these activities, what would you do?". I am a hardware idiot. While I have built a PC (my last one) I am so far behind the times you can bet I will be recruiting some of my geeky friends to help me put this together. And I prefer OVERKILL since you can see I do not get to build a new computer as often as I should. I don't want to be stuck like I am right now, not being able to join my friends in the latest games. Or always having to turn all settings off and run at 10fps. So no worries about overkill.

Approximate Purchase Date: 2-6 weeks (gotta convince the wife to let me blow my money on this lol)

Budget Range: $1600 before rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming, photo/vid editing, general computing, movies and entertainment

Parts Not Required: everything outside of the box (mouse, keyboard, monitors, etc.)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I am completely clueless here. I hear newegg is good. And I have a TigerDirect one exit up from me. And a Fry's about 20 miles away.

Country of Origin: US (Georgia)

Parts Preferences: No preference.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Last I was educated on this, SLI was the new 'cool' thing. So no preference since I have no clue

Monitor Resolution: (1920x1200)

Additional Comments: The PC only runs when being used, so power consumption is not that big of a deal. Ventilation is, the room tends to be a bit hot and the PC location can get stuffy at times as far as the desk and furniture etc. "Bling" I do like cool looking cases and lights. But they are VERY far down the priority list.

Thanks in advance for any advice and help!
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More about gaming photo editing build 1200 1600
  1. Wait for Intel new CPU's releasing 9th Jan, 2011. As they are based on new sockets hence new motherboard release as well. In a week or so AMD will release new GPU's. So just wait till mid of January and then ask for opinions as the price of CPU/MOBO/GPU will define wat other components u can get in your budget.
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