System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Light work, Light video, etc.
Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, hard drive, DVD-RW, and monitor.
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg tigerdirect amazon. Pretty open to other good sites.
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: Considering Intel because I'd like to have a viable build for ~4 years. However, if we can build something that would be good for ~2 years, then maybe AMD.
Overclocking: Maybe - probably not initially, but down the road I might.
SLI or Crossfire: Maybe - Not initially. Perhaps. I currently have a 9800 card that is SLI ready that I could salvage, but I was considering purchasing a 450 (see below) for future SLI.
Monitor Resolution: widescreen resolutions 1200 and above.
Additional Comments: I'd like to be running Starcraft 2 at high settings. Also, I'm confident that when the next Elder Scrolls game releases, I'll be getting into that. I know that building for 4 years out is difficult to do, but longevity is something that I want to keep in mind.
Hmm. I've never overclocked before, but I imagine the option would be good down the road. Do you think it's worth it to setup for overclocking or do you feel that the cost/benefit isn't there.
Yes regarding the resolution. The 6850 sounds good, and please forgive my ignorance, I've read the SLI/Crossfire guide, but want to be sure I understand correctly. Does crossfire link cards the same way SLI does? Do you think the 6850 is a better way to go than to pick up another 9800 and SLI those cards?
Overclocking can be worth it and it can not be. It's always good as a learning experience, but I feel if you are going to spend an extra ~30 on the CPU and ~$30 more on a HSF just for a minimal overclock, it's not a good value. On the other hand, most of my machines are overclocked.
I would get a new GPU. Yes, Crossfire is pretty much an exact equivalent of SLI.