After posting in a forum and receiving feedback I have gone away and done some more homework. I managed to cut about 800-900 off the total and am fairly happy with how the system stands. Your feedback would be great.
I'm now looking at about 2000-2200 and right now I'm just under 2000. I am planning to over clock but will need some help with a cooling system which can support this (although from what I read, high quality heatsinks are able to deliver what is needed.)
The system is:
CoolerMaster Full ATX RC-840-KKN1 Case Black
LG LG RET BH10LS30 BLK BluRay Burner, 10xBD-R Read/Write, 16xDVD+-R Read/Write, SATA, Silt Play, Win7Comp.*bonus 6speed BD-R*
My 212 EVO keeps temperatures reasonable at 4,5ghz no problem, results may wary though.
Depending what cooler you end up getting, you might want to consider getting the low profile version of the vengeance ram (especially if you want to fit 4 sticks, on my Asrock E3 G3 tall ram would be quite the squeeze in the first ram slot) And please do get an even number of ram sticks!
A gold rated 850w powersupply is overkill for any single GPU, and you might have low efficiency as that GPU idles quite low.
- As far as cooling goes, one really good option to try, especially if you're worried about RAM clearance or noise, is the Zalman 9500, which is probably one of the most underrated air cooling units out there. Zalman really knows how to make CPU coolers; only problem is that most of them are just so amazingly huge that who knows if they'll fit in your case. This one will. CoolerMaster really only has the 212 series that they luckily nailed the ball out of the park on, but the rest of theirs are just big honkers that try to get by on size and airflow volume like everyone else. I'd take the same sized Zalman cooler over an CM cooler any day. Newegg also happens to be having a huge sale this weekend that includes the 9500, so I'd look at that: http://promotions.newegg.com/NEemail/Feb-0-2012/Preside... www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683511800...
People make a big deal about the quality of the manufacturer on power supplies, and rightfully so. This is the #1 area where you need to choose blindly between a Chinese knockoff that's a piece of crap, or a Chinese knockoff that does OK. Basically every power supply out there is a Chinese knockoff, and it's hard to tell what's what. This article, should you find it interesting enough to read, will tell you what's going no with that: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/power-supply-oem-ma...
go to "N-R" for OCZ and "S-T' for Silverstone's real manufacturers. Basically, you'll find that they use some of the same manufacturers who are both OK (FSP, Sirtec, Impervio), OCZ uses one who is known for best quality (ChannelWell), and Silverstone throws in a few random unknown brands. But Silverstone charges double the price. I'd definitely go with OCZ in this case.
- You should reconsider whether you need a $400-$500 video card. In my experience, if you spend about $200 on a video card, you will be able to enjoy your games fully, and nobody except a hardware geek will be able to tell the difference between your GPU's performance and that of a GPU that's double the price. Your $200 video card will be good for several years, and toward the middle-to-tail end of that, indistinguishable from the premium GPU. Right now, that would mean you'd be looking at about an HD6950.