True, there aren't any high-end graphics card options for the 390t. Then again, I'm looking for application performance (Poser, Photoshop, Sketchbook), not gaming, and I suspect that is the wheelhouse for this particular HPE model.
Here's what I've spec'ed out for a little $2k:
HP Pavilion Elite HPE-390t customizable Desktop PC
Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-980X six-core Extreme Edition [3.33GHz, 1.5MB L2 + 12MB shared L3 cache]
12GB DDR3-1066MHz SDRAM [6 DIMMs]
1.5TB 7200 rpm SATA 3Gb/s hard drive from 1TB
1GB ATI Radeon HD 5570 [DVI,HDMI, DP, VGA adapter]
No speakers (integrated sound)
Blu-ray writer & Lightscribe SuperMulti DVD burner
Wireless-N LAN card
15-in-1 memory card reader, 1 USB, 1394, audio, video (for TV Tuner)
TV tuner, ATSC-NTSC with PVR, remote
The HP monitors aren't priced particularly competitively, so why bother with'em?
I also knocked off the sound card. I'd rather use the card slot for something else, like a SATA card so I can add a couple of 60GB SDD's in RAID 0. And if I decide I want a sound card, they can be had cheaply enough later.
I lowballed the graphics card. Again, if I decide need one later, there are plenty of budget options. Anything more than $200 is an extravagant indulgence IMO.
Could knock off $200 by going with the i7-970, which is also six-core, but my understanding is that it's weak at overclocking.
Looking at other systems labeled by CNet as "budget performance" models--the Dell XPS 9000, the Maingear Vybe, the Velocity Micro Edge Z30--the 390t with the i7-980 comes off looking pretty appealing for its price.
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