I've read a number of resources, including those in this forum, and I'm torn between how to get started. Is it more wise to pick up an older $200 hybrid and modify it slightly to be CX ready or is it better to find a lower end CX-specific bike, or is it better to buy a CX frame and slowly build it up?
I'm not opposed to building a bike from frame up, just not sure what is the smart play is as I give Cx a try.
CX specific. You can get something serviceable used off ebay for under $700, or new from Performance for about $900 (if you join their "club" and get 10% back). If you don't stick with cross, put on some slicks and you still have a decent road/commuter bike.