GPU selection and mobo/CPU Advice.

Approximate Purchase Date: Ideally this month but I'm not under any time constraints.

Budget Range: Would prefer to spend under $800 on upgrade but if extra hardware is added I can spend a little extra.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming + watching movies, often at the same time. Lots of multitasking, other usage is pretty standard.

Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade: Definitely GPU and RAM. Seeing as the last time I did anything major was 4 years ago I'm also interested in potentially upgrading CPU + motherboard. Not keen on upgrading power supply or cooling unless absolutely necessary for GPU.

Current Build:
Asus P6T mother board
Intel i7 920
Gigagbyte Odin 800W Modular PSU
Kingston 6GB 1333MHz DDR3 Triple Channel Kit
Noctua NF-P12 120mm Pressure Optimised Silent Fan
Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme Heatsink + Fan Holder + 120mm Fan
GTX 295
WD VelociRaptor WD6000HLHX 600GB 3.5" SATAIII
Western Digital 1TB Cavier Green WD10EADS (storage)
Pretty heavy duty full size case, no idea what the make/model is.

Do you need to buy OS: No, unless I update motherboard.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: No preference, other than somewhere that ships internationally.

Location: Australia.

Parts Preferences: I would prefer to stick with Intel and NVidia.

Overclocking: Maybe. Something that's perfect out of the box would be great but I'm not opposed to minor tinkering.

SLI or Crossfire: No

Your Monitor Resolution:
1920x1080 x 2

Additional Comments: My Dad built the original PC but is no longer around so I will be putting everything together myself. I understand the key concepts of PC hardware but don't know much about the finer details like compatibility. Also worth noting that my study gets pretty hot in summer so parts that aren't going to be too temperamental with extra heat would be great.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: GPU has been a little sluggish lately in high performance games (modded skyrim, BF2, etc), also been getting some errors. I have a feeling it doesn't like my dual monitor setup. Time for an upgrade and my old parts will find a new home in my brothers crappy PC :).

Include a list of any parts you have already selected with descriptively labeled links for parts.
Links will be from newegg, however I will have to purchase elsewhere as they don't ship internationally.

I've been looking at the GTX 680, however I have no idea what the difference is between the various brands. I read somewhere that the GIGABYTE GV-N680OC-2GD GeForce GTX 680 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card has the best cooling?

RAM will depend on if i keep my current motherboard. Either way I'll be upgrading to 16gb.

The big question is whether I should upgrade the motherboard and/or CPU. Would I notice a big difference? Furthermore, is the GTX 680 is compatible with my current setup? Ive been looking at the Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K as a potential upgrade. No clue what I should be looking for in a motherboard.

Apologies for any noob mistakes :).
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  1. Best answer
    The gigabyte branded card has a great cooler on it but the ASUS Direct CUII series cards will generally have better temperature performance.

    this card has rebates and will only be 20 bucks more and will give better cooling, but it is a triple slot card, and does not come pre overclocked, so the decision is yours, the gigabyte one is smaller and beter out of the box, but the asus one has more potential to clock higher.

    with the i5 added in you will only have 100 bucks left for a motherboard and that is not enough for a performance board but some close. Here are 3 boards. The ASROCK one is good, but their support is not the best. The two MSI boards have all modern PCIe slots, are great for triple or normal SLI and crossfire. The most expensive of the three will give you the best overclock performance and best general stability and performance.
  2. Best answer selected by cable_cat.
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