Here's a configuration. Including the monitor, it goes over your budget, but not by much. And I think the configuration here justifies exceeding the budget.
i5 3570k -- Pretty much the standard gaming CPU of today, since as I said you do not need an i7 for gaming. LINK
ASRock Z77 Extreme4 -- In my opinion, best all around board in reliability, overclocking, and other features for its price. LINK
CORSAIR XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 -- RAM is cheap. Another $38 would get you 16GB total. Not necessary for gaming, though. LINK
HIS IceQ X H785QN2G2M Radeon HD 7850 2GB 256-bit -- Runs Black Ops 2 on 1080p at high settings, comes with A FREE COPY OF FAR CRY 3 HOLYSHITLIMITEDTIME. Not a balls-to-the-wall card, but good nonetheless. LINK
CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750 V2 750W -- solid PSU, gives you room to expand/upgrade/overclock and even add a second 7850 if you want. LINK
Solid State Drive
Kingston SSDNow V+200 KR-S3020-3H 2.5" 120GB SATA III -- Great value SSD for its performance. 120GB should be good for OS and a few games that would benefit from fast load times. LINK
Seagate Barracuda ST1000DM003 1TB -- for your other non-program stuff. LINK
Pick a DVD burner. They are 20 bucks. If you even want one. Search Newegg or go to Fry's.
I'm not going to choose a case for you since the designs vary, and I don't know what your tastes are. Go here: LINK
The link should have them sorted by best rating. These are midtowers, so expandability is limited but not totally out of the question. Full towers cost more. I prefer them, but many others do not. You can expect to pay between $50 and $100 for a decent case. Pretty much anything on the first page of results is fine. I don’t have personal hands on experience with every single one of them, though.
1080p monitors will be about $150 for the 21-23 inch range, and higher for 27” range. There are also the Korean IPS monitors for $350-400 on ebay. Just grabbed one myself.
Including a $150-ish monitor, this totals to between $1050 and $1100 after rebates and depending on the type of case you choose.
Additional Recommendation: Replace the stock cooler with at least a budget aftermarket cooler such as the Corsair Hyper 212 Evo ($30-ish), or you won't be able to overclock that k-series chip very much, if at all.
If you're a software junkie like me, upgrade the SSD to a 240gb.
This post was edited on 11/16 at 12:20 pm