Thank all of you for being so generous with your information. Using your collective knowledge I have put together a parts list for my build.
My computer is getting old and need to upgrade so I can use the latest Photoshop and Chief Architect and thought it would be fun to try to build my own computer. I will keep my current monitor (Dell 20” UltraSharp 2005FPW) but also add another for a two monitor set up.
Approximate Purchase Date: I am ready now, but before I put the cart before the course I was hoping to get some comments from you knowledgeable fellows.
Budget Range:: I have not thought about a budget just looking for performance/value and I hate junk. If it is worth buying it is worth buying correctly. I use my computer a lot and want it to be an enjoyable experience.
System Usage: from Most to Least Important: Mostly research on the web for projects like this one. The reason I need higher end components is to edit my pictures so they look professional (using Photo-shop) and to render images for the house I am planning on building. My son may game on it if he is lucky enough to find it unused.
Are you buying a monitor:: Yes the new DELL ULTRASHARP U2713H 27 inch and as stated will run it with my old monitor in a 2 monitor configuration
Do you need to buy OS:: I will make the plunge to windows 8 for good or bad.
Preferred Website(s) for Parts:: New egg has been pretty helpful but I have not looked at there shipping policy to Alaska. Amazon is great for shipping here. Other than that I am open.
Location: Anchorage,: Alaska, USA
Parts Preferences:: None Overclocking:: Maybe SLI or Crossfire: : No
So here is what I came up with. Please comment, any info will help.
That Intel SSD is a Sandforce controller drive, known for choking up when presented with inocmpressable data, which is exactly what youl be dealing with. There are beter drives out there with custom controllers.
Samsung 840 Pro 256GB. $250 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
You no longer need Proffessional to take advantage of more than 16GB of RAM, standard Windows 8 will be enough.
Unless you have a significant sound setup already, the sound card is pointless. On a pair of $50 headphones or speakers you wont notice the difference between a $20 sound card and a $100+.
My experience with Windows 8 has been that of mine with Vista in it's initial release-unstable. It's a much better OS no doubt, but the instability can be a real issue. I'd also go for an M4 but that's just my preference. If you can, get 4x8GB instead as it will be a little bit faster and cheaper as well.
I recently added in an ASUS Xonar DGX (~$35) soundcard to my rig, using a Razer Carcharias headset. To be honest I havent noticed any improvement. It might just be that im not an audiophile or my headset isn't good enough to take advantage of it, but far as I can tell there isnt any benefit to a cheap sound card.