I built my current gaming computer about 3 years ago (with a little help from a very tech savvy friend who no longer lives near me) and now that I have graduated college and have a REAL job I am looking at building a new gaming PC and passing the older components on. Unfortunately, in the last 3 years I have really fallen out of the loop as far as technology is concerned and have a few questions.
1) In reading some of the other topics on the site I have gathered that intel Core 2 Duo is the top of the line atm for mobo's. I have always been an AMD guy and want to know how significant the difference is betwen the 2 brands (I'm not sure what the top of the line AMD board is atm).
2) What specs should I focus on most when choosing my mobo? What specs don't matter as much? What should I look for in processors?
3) What should I look for in a HD (other than size)? Did the faster HDs catch on? (My friend was ecstatic about his raptor HD 3 yrs ago, I believe it was 10k rpm)
4) I want a video card that is [bleep] near top of the line, yet I want to stay with nVidia. I have also always been partial to Asus cards...are they still a solid brand or no? What would be other brands to consider? (I want something reliable that will have no overheating problems...yes I have a well ventilated case, but I have had cards in the past that did not have sufficient heatsinks)
5) I plan to use my current 450W power supply and my current x-fi creative sound card..are there any compatibility issues I should be aware of?
6) I want to get 2GB of RAM..will this be sufficient? What specifically should I look for when purchasing said RAM?
7) I will likely need to put in a new cd/dvd drive, my current one is probably the oldest component in my PC. I am also potentially looking at a DVD burner for this. Will a DVD burner operate fast enough to keep me happy or will I want a 2nd drive for loading software quickly? Do DVD burners also burn regular CDs?? What else should I consider?
Any other advice would also be greatly appreciated, I'm really looking forward to having a powerful and smooth running gaming PC, this one works, just doesn't handle the newer games at the level of play I am used to.