Time for some PC advice

I need a new computer. Luckily enough I can actually afford to buy one. It’s just that the options are so varied. I know what I want to do and I think I’ve got an idea of what I need, but I’ll list the criteria here and see if anyone has any better ideas.

Mostly I want to do graphics- the comics and photo stuff, video editing and 3d. Poser isn’t a Maya level 3d engine, but it does use raytracing in the new version’s renders. It’s getting a bit much waiting 4 hours for a preview render only to discover I’ve got the hair colour wrong. I’m not that fussed about gaming at the moment, and I’m more likely to play real time strategy than first person shooters, but it would be nice to shoot things every so often.

So I reckon processor power, RAM and hard disk space are very important factors. An external drive for backups might also be a good investment. A nice, large flat screen monitor. I don’t need a bundled camera, scanner or printer (crap as the current printer is being at the moment), because I’ll pick my own when I want to get them. And on-site warranty would be nice.

Not a lot to ask for, really. Any suggestions anyone? I have to sort it out by Christmas as well, because that’s when I’ve promised my parents they can have my current one.

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