Additional Comments: I'm fairly new to tech specifics of all these components so I will need major help on this. I'm looking for a future-resistant gaming build that will give me the option to upgrade a few years down the road. Price/performance is a big value factor for me too. I also want an SSD HDD AND a regular HDD for speed and storage. Please also recommend a wireless NIC card, a case, fan, cooling etc. (whatever is necessary, again I'm new)
What I'm looking for is a budget gaming pc now and can also be a budget gaming pc in the future.
GTX 560 ti? Radeon 6950 1GB would be a better option. Good brands for it include Asus, XFX, HIS, and some others. Gigabyte is also good at stock but I've heard Gigabyte's cards don't overclock as well as the others I listed and some more brands I don't remember.
i5-2500K is only good if you want to overclock. If not then a non-k i5 would be good, i5-2400 chips are also a great option for not overclocking.
I agree on the other points as well made by the above poster about the motherboard, RAM, and PSU. Best memory brands include Corsair and G.Skill, I prefer G.Skill but Corsair is just as good. There are other decent brands but Corsair and G.Skill are the best from what I've read. I have never had to solve a problem involving either brand here on the forums.
I would wait instead of build a new computer now. Within a few months Intel will have their new CPUs, AMD will get more of their new cards out (The 7970 is out right now but nothing else from their new cards is out yet), Nvidia should get their new cards out, and we will probably have a few other surprises.
Intel's CPUs are expected to sport a 10-15% performance per clock improvement, a slight clock rate improvement, and huge improvements in power consumption. Right now Intel's best quad core sandy bridge chips have a TDP of 95w, a pretty small power consumption for their performance but these faster Ivy bridge chips coming out this year will have a 77w TDP... They are about 10-15% faster and have a lower TDP, overclocking headroom may be heavily increased as a result.
Theoretically they could be more like 20-30% faster if overclocked on cheap coolers (cheap being sub $40 coolers) and Intel claims they will be at the same price ranges of the Sandy bridge chips they replace. Sandy chips will be cheaper to compensate.
AMD's video cards are proven to have significantly higher performance then their current cards with similar names (6770 vs 7770, 7770 almost catches the 6850 in performance) while having similar TDPs to the cards they replace. Price wise, the only card released form AMDs new Radeon 7000 series is the 7970 and it is in the same price range as the 3GB GTX 580 but 15-25% faster, much more value then Nvidia's current top single GPU card. The cards based on AMD's new arch are the 7700, 7800, and 7900 series cards only, the lower end ones are re-brands of the low end 6600/6500/6400 and 5400 series. Admittedly, most of those low end cards were re-brands of low end 5500 and 5600 cards already but oh well, low end cards aren't for serious gamers anyway. These re-brands do not have the performance and power usage improvements of the higher end cards because they use the older VLIW5 arch.