Hi all, I need help buliding a new comp!

Hello everyone! I'm new here and am a computer newbie! I need some advice on buliding a new computer.

I'll be going to college this fall, my major is computer art so my new computer needed to be able to do some hardcore rendering and video editing. But you bet I'll do most of the overnight rendering on the school's computers, that's why I pay them 1k :) In addition to that, I'm sort of a gamer, not yet the hardcore level, but still serious enough. I have a budget of $1500, I might be able to get $200~300 more, but that's as much as I'll ever get.

My first priority is stability/safety(of the computer), followed by price and performance, so please keep these in mind when giving me advice :) Also keep in mind that I will get the computer in June or July, so the top-of-the-line now will be the next to top-of-the-line, also will be more affordable for me. I'm also hoping there will be a $100 to $200 drop on the price of the components by then.

So far, I was able to compose a computer that I think would do the job fine from Tom's guide:

CPU-Pentium 4 3.06 Ghz
Mobo-not really sure on what to get for now, but maybe I'll go for the Asus P4G8X Deluxe, HT is the most important thing I'm looking for in a mobo.
Memory-1 gig DDR
HDD-Westerndigital 120 GB or better
Sound Card-SB Audigy 2(I honestly don't care as long as it is compatable with the newer games, I don't pay much attention to the sound)
Video Card-for now, Radeon 9700 Pro, if by summer the price of the 9800 Pro drops to a reasonable level then I might consider getting that instead
Case-Enermax CS-1018
ROM-16X LiteOn XJ-HD165H, might get a DVD/CD-RW hybrid later.

That's all the thing I can come up with up until now, I have no idea what PSU to get, or the other things. Any advice is greatly valued and appreciated :)

PS-figured I'd change the title a bit to attract more attention.<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by MegaCharger on 03/19/03 05:47 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
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  1. If you can afford those specs, I envy you. They look impressive. Don´t know if you can afford all that though... Not now, as you put it, put by July, you might just make it! Good luck!
  2. You need a monitor. Check prices at New Egg .com Great prices fast service. Plus lots of free shipping.
  3. If you really dont care about the sound all that much its silly to spend almost 100$ on an audigy 2. I would reccomend a hercules fortissimo 2, or if you insist on creative labs maybe a sb live. Or you could even go with the onboard audio if money is really tight. Its got 6 channels and sounds ok.
  4. Right on. If you don't care much about the audio, just go with onboard, and put the money into a DVD burner, bigger monitor, or bigger/second hard drive. Would be a pity to waste money on a good add-on sound card when you don't care about the sound.

    When you say "1-gig DDR", get a good brand like Corsair or Crucial. Don't just get Billy-Bob's Discount Bonanza brand. And get the highest or 2nd-highest speed compatible with your MB. There's more than just one speed of DDR.

    War Eagle
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