for the most part i am going to be using this rig as a gaming machine. also i am going to be playing at 720p on an lcd televsion. was thinking about a core i3-2100 series and a radeon 6850. would this be overkill for most games at 720p? any other recommendations for a good pairing?
well i figured it would i just wasnt sure about the processor at that resolution, because from what i have read the cpu is usually the bottleneck at that low of a resolution. would it be better to maybe shell out for the core i5 and drop down to a lesser graphics card such as a 6770?
If you will be playing just one game exclusively, then look for benchmarks of that game at your resolution.
Past that, few games use more than 2 or 3 cores, making the i3-2100 an excellent gamer, and a quad will not be that much better.
My rule of thumb is to allocate twice your cpu budget to the graphics card.