I'm looking to build my first PC. I've been gathering as much info as I can, and was quickly referred to this site. I was assured I would get all the help I need here. For a bit of background info, I got into PC gaming about six months ago and have been using the Alienware m14x gaming laptop with highest available specs all-around. I believe it's finally time for me to step up to the next level and build a killer machine. I'm mainly looking for advice from experienced PC gamers on what sorts of brands and parts are best for me. Here's the details:
Approximate Purchase Date: (e.g.: this week (the closer the better))
Budget Range: 1500-2000$ Before / After Rebates
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Light Video Editing/ Graphic Design, Light Internet Usage
Additional Comments: I'm not looking for an exact build, but rather to get a better idea as to which direction to go in. I hope to increase my knowledge on the subject as well as get input from experienced PC owners on a first-time build. Any advice I can receive will be greatly appreciated.
CPU: You want to go with an i5 if your doing mostly gaming. Some people still buy Sandy Bridge, but there is no reason whatsoever to not go Ivy Bridge. i5-3570K if you want to OC, otherwise the non-K version.
Mobo: Depends on the features you want. You won't gain any real performance here. I'd go with something similar to the Asrock Extreme4 (feature wise), it will allow you to CF/SLI in the future and has plenty of features. Move to something similar to the Extreme6 if you think you need more SATA ports.
PSU: Your looking for something from Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, XFX here. Look in the 550-650W range if you won't ever CF/SLI. Or go to the 750-800W range if you want the ability to do that later.
GPU: For gaming, in my opinion nothing beats the GTX670, unless you want to get nuts and shell out $1000 for a 690. Yo could go with the 680, but you don't gain much more performance for the extra $125 you will spend. A 670 will dominate any game on the market and you could CF another in a couple years if you need it.
Case: Mostly personal preference on looks here. You could find a couple you like and ask about them. You don't need to go bigger than most mid-towers. Look for something with good cooling and cable management.
Ram: 8GB of most any 1600 1.5V DDR3 ram.
On your budget, I would get an SSD probably in the 120GB range and an additional 1tb or so drive for storage. Then get any old cheapo dvd burner, unless you want a blu-ray burner.