Reasonable Price = Outstanding Performance; Exorbitant Price = Insane Performance
Having seen what you can get in a $750 PC, you might wonder why you would want to spend more than that. That's like being at a great restaurant and saying no to the dessert menu because you just ate. Something might tempt you, and you might at least get something to take home (or, in computer terms, get an upgrade later).
Dropping $1000 on a gaming PC will get you similar performance, but twice the storage, a Power Supply that is ready for serious upgrades, and a nice CPU cooler for sweet overclocking.
Our $1500 dollar gaming rig takes the graphics to a whole new level. We're now at a price point that lets us step up to not two, but three GPUs, by combining a 4850 X2 card and standard single processor model. Hard drive storage is still 1TB as above, but we add a small SSD for better boot and load times. We also went with a full 8 GB of RAM, a good piece of future proofing with such low DDR prices. We also get a nice Antec 900 case.
Spending $2500 on a gaming PC is getting extravagant, and the part list is indeed an optimisitc Christmas wish list to most. The Cooler Master Cosmos S case is one of the best in the game, and we're running 2 4870 X2s for an almost absurd 4 GPUs. That sucks a lot of juice, but we have 1Kw of Thermaltake power. We also up our Phenom II to a Black Edition for better overclocking.We're still at 8GB RAM and 1TB bulk storage, but we swap out the tiny SSD for 300GB of 10k RPM goodness from a WD Velociraptor. Its almost as fast and now you have room for all your games on it.
We've also added Blu-Ray. Of course you could squeeze Blu Ray into a much lower budget, but these are gaming PCs. For gaming and media use, the $1500 dollar system would still be a killer gaming rig with only two GPUs, and get Blu-Ray for HD movies.
If $2500 is no compromise, than our $5000 gaming PC parts list is almost a money is no object scenario. We have most of the same goodies as before, but we've switched the 'Raptor for a Intell SSD. More importantly, we stepped up to the Core i7 X58 platform, including 12 GB of DDR3 RAM. We're actually not sure if this is a gaming PC or a professional graphics workstation, but the point is: good luck finding something that will make your frame rate stutter.