Excellent price on that lower, thanks Gatekeeper.
BB - true, the prices for a complete gun right now (dropping daily), versus building one yourself, it's hard to justify building.
But one only has to read about all the crappy builds out there, regardless of brand, to make yourself want to build one yourself, if for nothing else, to at least guarantee that it will go bang. And for the newbies to the AR platform, or to those uninitiated to it, it offers the opportunity to understand what makes it work, how to put it together and take it apart, and to be able to customize or repair it in the future. You don't get that with an off the shelf gun.
For someone who doesn't have a butt load of money to spend at one time, it allows that person to buy the pieces when they can, hopefully on sale to save a little. Sure, they could just wait until they have saved up enough to do it all at one time, too.
Where I've found it hard to match up the $$'s, go buy a complete build, say you've spent $1300. Now, that could be a complete Colt LE6940 right now, give or take a few $$'s for background check, etc. But, after browsing the forums, you've found out that the latest Mall-Ninja free float tube is out, or the latest fashion color in Magpul UBR/CTR/PRS w/ matching MIAD grip is out, or the latest BUIS from whoever just came out, etc. Now, to keep up with all the latest in Tacticool, you would have to strip down your beloved Colt, hopefully be able to recoop some of the $$'s from the parts that came with it, and then fork out more $$'s to get all the new stuff.
OR....you could have just been watching/reading about all the latest in gear from the SHOT show/forums/latest Tact Mags/etc. and saved the extra money, along with the money for all the base parts (receivers, barrels, parts kits, etc). and when the time was right, bought everything to make your ultimate weapon/tool, and still would have saved some $.
That is taking into account that if you would want to change/upgrade whatever weapon of choice you bought off the shelf, or leave it stock. Anyway, that's what the build or buy comes down to...in a nut shell.