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Major Upgrade

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July 13, 2012 4:31:11 AM

I went through all the hoops so if you want to skip some of this just skip to the line of dashes about midway through.

Approximate Purchase Date: ASAP when sales present themselves.
Budget Range: I'd like to stay under $400 if possible
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming
Are you buying a monitor: No
Parts to Upgrade: [gonna move this to the end]
Do you need to buy OS: No
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: The cheapest price as long as it is reliable
Location: Virginia, US
Parts Preferences: Lean slightly toward nVidia, plan to continue using my AMD cpu if possible
Overclocking: Maybe
SLI or Crossfire: Not with current mobo, perhaps in the future
Your Monitor Resolution: 1600x900
Additional Comments: The quieter the better, but price comes first. A window would be nice, not a deal breaker.
And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Running on a 3-4 year old rig, want to get the a better experience from current and future titles

Ok now that the formalities are out of the way, down to the gnitty gritty. First are the parts of my old rig I'm hoping to salvage for the new one (at least for a time).

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Deneb 3.2GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GA-MA770T-UD3P (Socket M2) Mobo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

4GB of some no name Cas 9 1333 ram (I will probably upgrade this whenever/if I get around to upgrading the mobo for CF/SLI, which also raises a whole set of questions as to if I should get an Intel board and new cpu. But that's for another day. Or just put some 1333 cheapo 8g RAM as a temp, or maybe even some G skills if some money is burning a hole in my pocket)

And I already bought a new power supply for the new build since it was 20 cash off at the time plus a 20 dollar mir:
PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 750W High Performance 80PLUS Silver SLI CrossFire ready Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you think any of these things I've listed so far must go, is simply too outdated let me know.

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OK, so onto the tough decisions that I came here for you fellows' expertise on. Let me know what you think of my choices here, which would be the rest, or if they are all terrible choices and what I should buy instead.

For a case I'm looking at the following and hoping they go on sale soon, nabbing the Coolermasters or Antec at 40ish would be awesome:
Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
COOLER MASTER HAF 912 RC-912-KKN1 Black SECC/ ABS Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
COOLER MASTER Elite 430 RC-430-KWN1 Black
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Rosewill CHALLENGER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think my preference of those 3 would be to get the COOLER MASTER HAF 912 and slap a couple of these on it, and rearrange the smaller fans they would displace from the original arrangement:
COOLER MASTER Megaflow 200 R4-LUS-07AB-GP 200mm Blue LED Case Fan
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For GPUs these were my considerations, if you know of a specific manufacture of the particular card that is cheaper or better let me know (also if this www.ascendtech.us is reliable, I've never really heard of it prior):
Dell GeForce Gtx 480 1536MB 2x Dvi Video
http://www.ascendtech.us/dell-geforce-gtx-480-1536mb-2x...
EVGA 015-P3-1480-KR GeForce GTX 480 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
MSI GeForce GTX 560 Ti Twin Frozr II OC 880MHZ 1GB GDDR5 Dual DVI Mini-HDMI DX11 PCI-E Video Card
http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=58303&vpn=N560GTX-TI%2...
Galaxy 57NKH3DH5PXK MDT X4 GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Multi-Display Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
XFX Radeon HD 7850 860MHZ 2GB 4.8GHZ GDDR5 DVI HDMI 2XMINIDP PCI-E Video Card
http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=71671&vpn=FX-785A-CNFC...
SAPPHIRE 11188-22-20G Radeon HD 6950 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card (OC Edition)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Well that's all, sorry for making it so long, this is my first real post here, and almost my first real build compared to what I was running on. So let me know what you think, all criticisms and suggestions welcome!

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July 13, 2012 7:13:20 AM

The good news is for single GPU configs, a PhenomII x4 is still a decent performer for games generally but @ your 1600 x 900 resolution all those cards are overkil unless you are planning a 1080p upgrade? If so Egg has an OCed HD 7850 with free game/ship as well
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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July 13, 2012 7:40:45 AM

Hm, yea I suppose I'm over doing it a little. I'm just hoping to future proof some so I don't have to upgrade for a couple years and can scrape by on what I get now.

Edit: That is a nice price on that card compared to the one I put up.
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July 13, 2012 7:59:50 AM

HD7850 is a brilliant card and IMO is the best compromise between price and performance today.
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July 13, 2012 8:08:51 AM

So would getting any of these cards as future proofing be a good idea or a waste? I would like to get high fps (or bearable in the case of stuff like BF3) on the highest settings for most games out right now. Would I be able to max out most games and get ~60 with say a 6850? Because if I could, I would definitely do that, and just buy another "bargain" gpu when the opportunity came around.
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July 13, 2012 8:18:52 AM

If you're not planning to upgrade your screen then yes, 6850/70 should be enough for max.
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July 13, 2012 9:07:56 AM

Okay thanks. Got some thinking to do... hm. Probably won't replace the monitor for a year since I just bought it, so I should probably go with a mid range.
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July 23, 2012 5:41:27 AM

Best answer selected by taydee.
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