The faster you wish to go the more it costs. Personally I like AMD merely because they're so much cheaper than their Intel counterparts. I'd go for a MINIMUM AMD 2000+, and I mean minimum, these retail for around £60 now with their heatsink and fan, if you can afford more then all the better. Have a look at the websites and you'll see the way the prices work, they go fairly steadily up until you get a fairly high price hike as you reach the newer faster processors. I prefer to spend the cash saved by not buying the latest processor on a decent motherboard, graphics card, hard drive and memory. Try to get a motherboard which will take a faster processor than you wish to install at the moment, this will allow you to upgrade, if you wish, in a year or two to a faster processor.