Well, $2000 is a lot of cash to spend on a new rig if you have speakers and whatnot already especially if you build it yourself which i would recommend.
Firstly, you need to get all your parts to build your own computer. I would recommend getting most or all of them from the same place.
Case: For the case just get anything that looks good and is Standard ATX. If it is Standard ATX it will fit all the parts you need. I got a reasonable case for about 40 pounds which is about 80 dollars.
Power Supply: Most cases come with a power supply inside but check the wattage and quality to see if it will power the system you want. 400W and over is a safe bet.
CPU: Personally i use Intel Pentium 4's but AMD will do just as well. You want something around the 3.0ghz mark. AMD tend to be cheaper and run at lower temps. You could also go for an AMD 64 which is a 64bit processor and good for games.
Motherboard: The Mobo really depends on the rest of the system. For and Intel based board go for something made by Abit. I use the Abit AG8 on my current gaming system. Its a nice board and a reasonable price. You get a uGuru clock which gives you the temperature of and speed of fans in your system on a external clock.
Memory: Go for about 1GB of memory if you can. Use DDR 400 or DD2 but again this depends on what your mobo will support. Try to find out the CL of the memory. You want a CL of 2-3 on your memory. Something to note about CL of memory is that DDR2 memory with a CL of 2.5 will be slower than DDR memory with a CL of 2.
Hard Drive: Not much to say here. Just depends how much space you want. Most Mobos like my AG8 will support either IDE or SATA.
Graphics: For a gaming system and one you are looking to be 'furture proof' i would recommend a PCI-EXPRESS video card. PCI-EXPRESS is the new faster slot used for graphics cards and having this slot will ensure your ability to use future cards. I would also recommend an ATI card as they are very good performers and much better than Nvidia. You want the ATI X800Xt or X850 Radeon.
CD Drive: Just preference here. Whatever drive you want. If you play and write to DVDs get a DVD RW.
I could give you some links to some good items if you wish but i use www.Aria.co.uk and i dont think they will deliver to the States.
Edited by QzXx, 27 June 2005 - 05:53 PM.