I hope I'm posting in the right spot.
Antec 300 Mid-Tower ATX Black Gaming Case
PSU: OCZ GSX 700
MB: P8P67 - M
CPU: i5 - 2600
RAM: 8GB (1600 )
GPU: AMD HD 6870
HDD: 1TB WD - Black Sata 3 / 64MB / 7200
Onboard sound. However AudioBox USB (Presonus) routed for in/out via usb.
Screen 2253BW Samsun Syncmaster.
Now here's where my question comes in.
I am slowly beginning to use my system to made MUSIC.
SW: Finale 2012c / Sibelius / Studio One (Trial) / Abelton Live 9 Suite (Trial). (Footnote: StudioOne - Full, wants - Intel Core 2 Quad, 4GB of Ram / 20 GB hdd space, / 1280x768 res.) Abelton Live 9 Suite - Full wants - Multicore Processor / 2GB Ram / 1024x768 display, and 55 GB of HDD space.
I am also looking at playing some MMORPG's. Nothing as wild as Crysis.
Consider maybe League of Legends, or Neverwinter when it comes out.
I am thinking of going to 2 monitors though. However, the current still works just fine, without a single dead pixel.
According to Windows the peformances are as follows:
The core of your system is fine for what your after, a Sandy i5 and a 6870 will cover you for audio work and those games just fine.
As for whether you need an audio card, the answer is no since the motherboard has onboard audio. But if your sound setup is reasonably high end, then a dedicated audio card will be required to get its full potential.
With respect to the video card update. The card is still selling for $230. or was. I'm wondering though. Since it is crossfire ready, can I add say a 7770 with it and will the crossfire work, and increase performance?
jeez guys he doesnt need a 200$ video card...he can play LOL on medium with a 7770/gtx650.. hes not playing crysis.
noones addressed his misic needs.
i used to be into midi stuff..sf2's..cakewalk. ive done extensive research in this.
i highly reccomend a audio card. it offsets the sound duties to the dedicated card and not the cpu cycles...also the reverb quality and various environments you get with a sound card far outway ac96 or other onbourd sound stuff.
also programs like you have love a fast hdd with a large cache...ive experienced stuttering with slow 5400rpm hdd's with a 2mb cache.
cpu's and memory are so far advanced now that u dont really need to change anything that u have now. back in the day of pentium 4's and athlon u had to be careful of what u got.
so i highly recommend 7200rpm - 10000rpm hdd with a 64mb cache...a cheetah if u can afford it...and a asus soundcard.
dont go nuts on the video card. alot of the guys here are gamers.
You'll be fine with your current rig, no need to upgrade except maybe like you said an audio card to have good shielded input and eliminate interferences when you record/playback... Xonar Essence are awesome and pretty much the best, however if you don't have 200 bucks to spend, forget that !!
Also, if you don't use great speaker, microphone, you'll never see any difference over the integrated audio so plan on a great setup if you don't have one... (it make a really great difference over integrated but you need like 100$+ headphones and a 2-300$ speakers set to really see how awesome the difference is... (i can recommend Corsair SP series for speakers that really worth their price and Sennheiser PC360 for a really really good headset) For a mic that can do almost anything, the Shure SM57 or the SM58 for vocals (but the 57 fits anything, Vocals, Guitars, Drums,etc...) They sells for about 100-150$ with shipping
Hey Guys your response are awesome - thank you! Currently I route it back via usb to the audiobox. I have a secondary output from the sound card, both link into my stereo system, plugging directly into a sony AV receiver, which in tern either sends to 2 mission speakers (2x30 watts) or 2 ADS speakers (2x200 watts) I think I'll hold off on the video card, because it doesn't seem to be worth it just yet. Audiocards locally are like this Xonar: DG - $35, Xonar 7:1 - $60, Xonar Essence $200, Xonar Essence One - $580. Would the DG or 7:1 do anything positive in this situation? Its not that I'm being super cheap, but...I do not like wasting money.
personnaly i dont know the various options afforded on the asus cards..thats something youd have to research on the asus website to see if the options you want and in your budget.
offtopic: you do knopw that going through a second amp in your av reciever causes cross distortion...basicallt you have (when you get a audio card) 3 amps fighting over the dominant one. hard to explain.