I don't need a new machine, though. I just want to upgrade my existing machine to make it somewhat current. Somewhere along the line, I'll completely replace it with something new, but atm, I'm looking at adding a couple more years to my current investment.
I understand. However, think of it this way:
1) within a few months, your upgrades will be obsolete;
2) within a few years, your upgrades will be unable to run the newest version of Windows and its apps
3) your current PC can be used to run your current programs and/or as part of your home theater/audio setup
4) your new system (which will probably be better than the current system with upgrades, unless you are sure you know what you are doing) can be upgraded in the future (if you want) when you have more $$$ rolling in.
If you are really into upgrading:
processor (E6850 min)
2 gig Corsair RAM (4 gig if you go Vista Ultimate)
8800 nVidia (min)....within 2 or 3 years, though, expect to have to upgrade to SLI