I just bought my son the following computer based on the Budget Intel-Based Gaming PC Configuration. It is an amazing computer! Here it is:
Processor Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge-based 3.3 GHz CPU $220
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Motherboard $119
RAM G.Skill Ripjaws 8 GB DDR3-1066 Kit (2 x 4 GB) $48
Graphics Card Sapphire Radeon HD 6950 2 GB $265
Hard Drive Seagate Barracuda 1 TB 7200 RPM 3.5" Hard Drive $55
Case Cooler Master HAF 912 Mid-Tower $55
Power Supply Corsair Enthusiast TX750 750 W 80 PLUS $110
DVD Burner Lite-On iHAS124 24x DVD±RW Drive $19
The only change I made was that I upgraded the hard drive to a OCZ Vertex 3 120GB SSD. The computer is so nice I'd like to build something similar (but better :-p). The only difference would be that I would like to run 2 24" monitors as I code in PHP a lot (maybe 27"?)- could I get some help with these too?
I'm willing to spend another $500-$1000 or so. I play WOW, League of Legends and will play Diablo III.
I don't think I need to use SLI or Crossfire. I want something very stable, I'm not that interested in overclocking. I like very quiet systems!
that's more mid range system, not a budget system. nice build though
if you jump to a 27" monitor that is more than 1920x1080/1200, you going to need a beefy GPU to drive it if you want good frame rates in games. using 2 monitors won't be an issue even on a card like you son's 6950, as you only game on one (generally) running an extended desktop can be done easily on a $50 GPU.
since you have a good amount of budget. I recommend either a GTX 680 or HD 7970 if you go with a single large monitor (2560x1440/1600) or for 2 monitors (@1080p) a HD 7870/7950 GTX 560Ti /448. nVidia is releasing the GTX 670 soon and it looks real promising, of course it will depend on pricing.
you can follow the same basic foot print with the sandybridge or you can jump to Ivy (only 6% performance increase) you would need to look at the cost difference and see if its worth it. for your stated use there is no advantage to going with Ivy other than its the newest "thing" (and maybe Dad should have the baddest system in the house )
if you are looking for an exact build we can post also, just give us a budget.
I game with 3 x 24" 1080 p monitors and use a GTX 590 and it is tiresome to set up from 3 individual screens to being one big screen all the time. I am seriously thinking of just going to a single 27" or 30" Dell or Samsung. you can always have a 27" monitor now and get a cheap 23-24" on as a secondary for coding later if you need it.