Currently, I am a rising senior, and I plan to game a decent amount in college. I am going to build/upgrade my new rig around June-ish ... And yes, I'm going to bring my desktop to college, and buy a new laptop.
Right now, I have this rig I built about 3-4 years ago:
Cooler Master Scout
Intel Core i7 920 OC to 3.2 GHz
XFX 4870 1GB
G. Skill 6gb (3x2GB) Tri-Channel DDR3 1600 MHz Ram
Corsair 750W PSU (The orange one, the non-modular one)
640 GB WD Caviar Black HDD
EVGA SLI LE Motherboard
Scythe Mugen CPU Cooler
So in June, should I fork out another 1.2k and build a completely new desktop? And get a mediocre laptop ($400-$600)
Or should I spend $300 for a new graphics card, and like $100 for another HDD? And save the money, and probably buy a decent gaming laptop for the move? ($800-$1100)
I'm not sure if my i7 920 will bottleneck or not ... it's the oldest i7.
And I could get an SSD, but I don't feel like spending that much. I will wait the extra 20 seconds or so, it won't kill me.
Yes, you'd be fine with just a new GPU. I think you'll be OK up to around 570/6970 level (the 570's better).
An SSD would be pretty badass. If you're considering dropping $1200 on a desktop, you can probably afford $110 for an M4 64gb for your OS and a couple of apps. Go run WinDirStat and tell us about the data distribution on your HDD at the moment.
You should be able to clone the OS to the SSD without a reinstall. WinDirStat! What's making up the bulk of your data, and how much data do you have in total?
Why would you need a new drive if you've got one?
Seagate, like most HD mfgers, provides cloning software to make it easy to replace your "C" drive, or any other. More frequently now they are using a special version of Acronis software. Check this link and skip to page 8: