Need advice on an(a couple) upgrade(s)

TL;DR template first:

Approximate Purchase Date: can buy it right now if strong consensus

Budget Range: not too crazy, <$400

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Remote Desktop to work, Visual Studio/Eclipse development, watching movies, minesweeper, notepad.

Are you buying a monitor: Nah (unless that's the general opinion)

Parts to Upgrade: That's the question - what should I upgrade? (thinking video card)

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: amazon due to FAST shipping, but newegg's good too. Don't have a preference if i can get it quickly.

Location: City, State/Region, Country - Boston Suburbs, MA, USA

Parts Preferences: None really, prefer Nvidia > ATI due to driver stability (long time ago, don't know if it's still true)

Overclocking: Maybe - if you think it's a safe (stable) option for me

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe - I'm open to doing so

Your Monitor Resolution: 1080p monitor + sometimes hook up 1080p 47" TV

Additional Comments: Windows 8 + Ubuntu 12.10 (damn Unity runs slow)

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: I cannot believe that a simple OS GUI is bringing my computer down, that's just sad (Ubuntu's unity. Gnome runs much faster (less effects). Plus it's holiday season and I can hehe

MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-Z68XP-UD3P motherboard
GPU: ASUS GeForce GT 430
CPU: i5-2500K
RAM: 8GB (2x4) GSKILL DDR3 1600
HD1: 1x Intel 520 240GB SSD - Windows 8
HD2: 1x Crucial m4 64GB SSD - Ubuntu 12.10
HD3: 1x Seagate 3TB HDD - data disk

Thank you all in advance!!
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  1. Hey zdbc13, that looks extremely interesting! I'm quite tempted to jump on that, but I think i've finally learned to corral in my twitchy shopping fingers haha

    While it's an excellent deal for the performance, would my relatively low graphics requirements (stopped playing real PC games a few years ago) necessitate such an investment? Is my graphics card that large of a bottleneck in my current current build? If so, I'd gladly purchase this.

    also i'm assuming PCIx 3.0 is backward compatible? My mobo only has 2.0 x16.

    Thanks again!

  2. Well, I just threw a great card out there that fit your budget. Yes it will be overkill for your usage but you never know, you might find some fun game you'll want to play. It won't bottleneck your I5 although you have the wrong motherboard if you want to overclock it someday. PCIx 3.0 is backward compatible, just runs at the older specs. But that won't slow you down much.

    Actually for your current needs you could go as low as this and anything in-between:
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