I've been gaming for years, but this will be my first experiment in system building. I've never even owned a desktop computer, only a variety of gaming laptops, so this is going to be interesting. With that in mind I am open to any suggestions and tips to get me started. I can't really post a components list because I have no experience with any of them. I like the look of some of Marest's sample builds, but I have a few questions about things I've heard of but am no expert in.
I'll be mostly playing WoW and Diablo III and would like to be able to run both at max settings. I also want something that can run the more demanding titles well enough, although I don't play any of those at the moment. I'm looking to stay within a price range of $1000-$1500, and that will need to include a monitor and an OS.
I'm interested an SSD if the performance increase is as dramatic as I've heard. I've also heard a lot of great things about the new Ivy Bridge processor, but I don't know that much about it, either. Thanks a ton for the help and advice.
Above build from hapylol looks really good and will definitely handle any of the needs you listed. SSD is for your OS, programs and games, it'll makes everything load faster, feel smoother and snappier. It will not have any performance gain FPS wise but it's well worth it. Only downside is, you never not want an SSD again =p
Just stick with the i5-2500k, especially if you can get it at $180 at MicroCenter, in fact I'm going there right now to pick one up
i5-3570k is a little better clock for clock and use less power but overclocking is a little trickier and requires tweaking, avoid anything above 1.2-1.3v or you'll be able to fry eggs on it.