This coming from a hardcore Intel guy, i almost built my new rig an amd amx2 4800. Until my intel rep contacted me with info on the core duo2 intel.
Now i am happy to say they are back on top of the heap ragster.
Duo Core 2 knocks out Athlon 64
Photoshop may like amd, but it LOVES Intel.
I would suggest a 150gig Raptor for a C Drive and a good size 400gig + for a D Drive.
Programs like photoshop, autocadd, hi end graffix stuff like to run their cache on a secondary drive that isnt the install drive.
For a chassis i would suggest one of the Thermaltake series. Good cooling, rubber mount hard drive bays, very very nice. 3 of my PC's are runnin in
the Tsunami and Tenor cases.
For Vid the Nvidia geforce are good all around video cards. Im partial to ATI but only if u are well versed in screwing with drivers.
For Ram you can get away with some Patriot and no less than 1gig in dual channel mode. 2gig would be better.
Kaminski Opterons are HiEnd Server Processors, not designed for everyday box use. and definitely not budgeted for everyday box use either.
With the release of the Duo Core2 processor, Intel got smart and went with AMD's idea, stop pushing the ghz barrier and start dealing with the
bandwidth bottlenecks in todays PC's. And they did it Well. And donot go for the Extreme Edition, way too pricey for the horsepower vs wattage usage
Look to Asus for ur motherboard. Zipzoomfly is great for ram. Newegg is great for CPU's and Motherboard combos. If you go intel, go with intel
chipset. If you go AMD go with the nforce, stay away from SIS bigtime and Via is ok but Nforce is much better in routing the bandwidth.
It would take a month of sundays to explain the difference in Bandwidth vs Processor Speed vs Northbridge processing vs Watt usage.
Look at toms hardware, anandtech, maximum pc for reviews of all of the above suggestions and make an educated decision for yourself.
As always these are just my opinions, but since i build PC's for a living, i would like to think these are educated opinions. but as always, make ur