Well, like most people who seem to post in here I'm looking for gaming performance on high to highest settings in new games at 1900x1080 res. Unfortunately, as I'm upgrading from a laptop I do need a monitor and keyboard.
Parts I've selected are as follows:
Case: Corsair 500R Black $140 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
This case is well-reviewed and I think it's gorgeous, plus it seems to have solid air flow. Was considering an 800D but that seems like overkill for what I need and after seeing a friend's full size monster (it was a coolermaster, looked blocky, red LEDs on the front, HAF?) I like the idea of something a little smaller.
CPU: i5-2500K 3.3GHz $230 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...)
Not much to say about this guy. I'm interested in maybe a little light OC, though I'm not experienced with doing it I'd like to learn. From what I've read there would be no reason for me to upgrade to the i7.
GPU: MSI HD6970 2Gb 256-bit GDDR5 $390 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
Was debating between this and a GTX570, saw that these perform a tad better for around the same price. Not sure what the best brand is, but I've heard good things about MSI and the clocks on this one are a little higher. I'm sort of tempted to wait for the 7950, but it seems like that might be overkill, and prices will likely be pretty high for a little while after release. I'm not sure though...
Mouse: Cooler Master Storm Spawn $40 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
Looking to replace my 6 year old Creative Fatal1ty laser mouse, which has been a great one but is on its last legs. This one is well reviewed and for claw-grippers like myself. I'm assuming it will track fine on the original Icemat surface I use.
I'd love suggestions about any of these parts if I've erred in my choices. I believe all of this should be compatible and good to go (I'm praying that the CPU cooler will fit in the case--any one with knowledge on this?). Looking forward to seeing what people think of this build, I'm very excited to order the parts and get started as I've been waiting for 5 months to do this but held off until taking my medical school exams...no way would Skyrim or BF3 have left much time for studying!
2. You want low-profile RAM with a large CPU cooler like the Silver Arrow. Pick up the low profile Corsair RAM with a high quality Corsair 750W PSU (brands such as Corsair, SeaSonic, Antec, XFX are of proven quality):
I'd considered 560 Ti's in SLI, but after reading all of the horror stories about microstuttering I got cold feet and thought maybe a single GPU solution might be the safer bet. So you think a 750W PSU would be appropriate?
And yeah, I did forget Windows. I've been running linux on my laptop for the last year or so, so that'll be an adjustment.
There's a lot of good components you've selected but these would be my recommendations:
1. $160 on peripherals IMO wouldn't be the best idea. I'm really in the minority here when I say this is the least important part of the build. You should just get a $30 Logitech wireless keyboard / mouse combo (I use the MK260 and really like it) and then put that money into getting a 7970.
2. The Corsair Vengeance RAM is a good line but make sure that you get the low profile version. And you don't need 16GB either - you can get by with 8GB and be perfectly fine.
3. You are right about not needing to upgrade to i7 - it's not needed for a gaming system.
4. PSU is a decent choice but 600W is way underpowered for your system. I'd recommend looking at a 750 - 800W just to be on the safe side. Something like the Seasonic X750 Gold.
5. I would not recommend the Silver Arrow - it's insanely expensive and I've actually had better luck with smaller coolers like the Hyper 212 and the EVGA M020. Get one of these instead and put the difference toward getting a 7970.