thanks guys quick question wouldn't I save money and get comparable performance if I crossfire two HD 5770s?
I wouldn't recommend it, only if you already owned a 5770 would it make sense, imo. However crossfire 5770s are roughly a 5870, and in some cases a bit better. But in some cases where crossfire is poorly utilized in the game you will be stuck with the performance of one 5770 which is alright but not that good at high res. If you go with a single card you will have higher minimum fps, more than enough horsepower for the present, and ridiculous power if you ever decided to crossfire it... really if you wanted to crossfire that bad I would grab a pair of 6850s which is about $360 total (over your budget) but will deliver top notch performance and often times better than the 6970/gtx580 fyi.
overall I would say no to crossfire 5770s unless you could get a killer deal on them for like 100 a pop I wouldnt go for it, for that matter you would be better off with a single 5870 now, imo.... but then again if you were going to go that route and that price range I would just grab a 6870 for around 210ish AR now... there are so many options, not even mentioning the gtx 560 again but if you want crossfire I'd go for 6850s/6870s and maybe even crossfire 5770s if you got a $175 or less deal on both of them say.. lots of things to consider but in the end I think you are better off with the faster single card or at least the newer tech. good luck