First Custom Built Gaming Computer?

Ok, so Im 15 years old and I want a computer for christmas. It's main use? Everything. I want to do some pretty heavy gaming like Crysis and MW2 because my Xbox 360 died. Im really into music so it's gonna have an excess of 10Gbs of music and video on it. Ive looked at retail computers at best buy and... show more Ok, so Im 15 years old and I want a computer for christmas. It's main use? Everything. I want to do some pretty heavy gaming like Crysis and MW2 because my Xbox 360 died. Im really into music so it's gonna have an excess of 10Gbs of music and video on it. Ive looked at retail computers at best buy and Sam's club just to name a few, and price wise the computers just arnt that great. I know a little bit about computer hardware so I considered building one with my father, who built our home computers years back. Our computer now is about 8 years old and its just become awfully slow. I dont need the newest fastest Core i7 Extreme or anything like that, but I do want to play games smoothly at pretty high settings with no lag or hiccups (cause i hate that!). And it needs to last ~4 years until im out of high school being pretty fast and playing new games before it shows signs of lagging behind.

Ive put together numerous configurations on New egg and sites like that, and i want something like this.

Processors: Core i7 or Core 2 Quad (There both quad-core so I dont see any difference, just not Core 2 Duo.) Dosent have to be the Core i7- 975 Extreme that costs 2000 dollars just the average 2.66GHz or maybe 2.8. Dont know much about AMD Processors but ill consider the Phenom X4 or whatever is equal to Intels Quad-Core.

Motherboards: I dont know much about motherboards but I do want one that supports i7 and Core 2 Quad of course and maybe something that supports SLI and Crossfire. Also i want just a name brand like Asus or EVGA, not a brand where you say, "who the hell are they??".

Memory: Around 6 to 8 Gbs sounds like enough. I dont know the difference between Dual Channel (DDR2) and Triple Channel (DDR3). So if you can explain that a little i would appreciate it.

Graphics: Nvida or ATI, leaning towards ATI because they are a bit cheaper and still offer good performance. Im confused with Nvidia becuase it seems like all their cards are just renamed versions of older cards. I want something with DX11, preferably a HD 5870. I know Nvidia hasnt released their DX11 cards yet but Im still considering it. Down the road (like next year in 2010) i might buy myself another identical card to go crossfire in time for Crysis 2 and stuff like that, so i just want it to be compatible.

Everything else is pretty self explanitory. just a 500Gb or something harddrive. DVD drives and burners. Around an 850w PSU that can handle SLI and CrossfireX safely. Im going to need a wireless card and maybe a beefy sound card. Im gonna need a card reader for my camera. And thats just about it besides the case which is my personal preference.

Also looking for a monitor, HD, widescreen and all that around 22' to 23' inches maybe 1080p. Looked at Asus and Acer and im pretty satisfied coming from a 20' CRT at 1024x768.

Some of my previous configurations have been around 1500 to 1700 dollars and thats a little too much considering im going to pitch in a little on the computer and buy myself a monitor, speakers, keybrd, etc.

Im in the range of 1000 to 1500 dollars, I have about 900 dollars and im willing to pitch in a little on the computers TOTAL cost to help out my parents. (With tax and shipping on parts.) Im keeping aside about 500 dollars to buy a monitor (~250) the logitech x-540 (~90) the g9 mouse (~60) a nice lit-up keyboard (~80) and crysis maximum edition and MW2 (Both about ~90) just for starters. I dont want to empty my bank account either. lol

Keep in mind im coming from a Pc with a AMD Athlon XP2400+. A 6600Gt. and 256Mb of ram. So this is gonna be a HUGE upgrade for me.

Ok im done now i know i had a lot too say but i just want something nice for the $$. I really REALLY aprecciate any info or help you can give me. Mainly you computer people. Thanks!!!
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