I built a full cage from scratch and am in it about $500 in materials.
Which is why I was going to go that route, until I factored in the fact I'd still need to buy a good bender and notcher, and I don't really have the work space at the moment....
And that's why I have the synergy kit on the way. A little extra flavor and it should be more than enough for me and cost me less in the short term. If I had a bender already I'd be going a different route.
Genright had talked about making some stanchions for the JK like they offer for the TJ/LJ, but I don't think they ever developed. It would be the easiest way to go if you wanted to skip the a-pillar snakeing struggles, but alas... I don't think any one makes them.