My n00b thread never made the transition from the old forum, so I'll use this as a substitute. I think my goal for my rebuild of my tower is going to be to keep it under $500. I can keep most of the hardware I already have. I've got a good PSU, an SSD, and a brand new GPU. I've got a wireless N card for WiFi, but at the moment I'm hardwired to my router. Parts I will be looking to replace to be up-to-date: - CPU - Mobo - RAM - CPU cooler, if necessary I'm leaning towards AMD, because this would put me in 1600 range and give me 6 cores and a decent enough stock cooler that I could always upgrade later if I was tight on money during the build. If I go Intel, I'm in i5 territory and I don't feel like the pricing is worth it. Obviously, the market is going to start moving quickly, so this is subject to change. I do have a question though. I currently have an Auzentech Forte X-Fi soundcard. They went out of business and there were never updated drivers for Windows 10, so I'm using community-created drivers from Creative's forums. The drivers work, but not without sporadic but uncommon issues, like once in a long while there will be some distortion for a few seconds before correcting itself. Am I just better off using the onboard sound on whatever mobo I end up buying? I originally bought the card because it was an affordable X-Fi chipset, the card had an headphone pre-amp for music and I had read that sometimes the card can take load off your CPU. I don't know if the workload part is true or not and I doubt its significant. I also never use the pre-amp port. The X-Fi chip is not specifically utilized in any games since the last decade. I don't know if it is worth migrating to the new build. The only reason I can think of to keep it is having a dedicated soundcard has to be better than not having one, right? Also I'd love to here some thoughts on hardware options with a $500 budget. If anyone wants to play along for fun.