With all the information out there i know it can be very overwhelming just trying to figure out where to start. planning is what i believe makes a sucessfull and cost effective grow. so you may ask how do i start planning well the first thing you need to figure out is what do you need out of your grow. are you just looking for a personal stash of high quality smoke, or are you starting to set up a grow for profit operation. by asking yourself some questions about the scope of your operation you can start making some decisions about your budget. i'm not going to go into the advantages of certain equipment over others. there is plenty of other information about this out there on the forums if you just search. but the basic things you will need to include in your budget everything that your plant will need. the basic catagorys as i think of them are: media or the material you will grow your plants in : Containers : your seeds or clones : Growing envirnment, and i use this term usely as it could be anything from a closet to a custom made envirnmentally controlled room : Lighting i prefer HID for veg and flowering and t5's for mothers and seedlings or clones : nutrients : and one more important thing that many people forget is ventilation: everyone you ask is going to have a different opinion on what is going to work and why it works the best. unfortunatly the fact of the matter is that everyone is in a different situation. some people are going to be growing in large rooms with lots of ventilation which will allow them to use larger more powerfull lights and heavier amonts of chemicals without burning. or like me you may be in a small cabinet which would limit the amount and size of the light because of heat issues. if you take one thing away from reading this it's that piss poor planning provides poor product. take the time to write everything down draw some pictures, make a list of supplys and dont buy everything at the same place and don't over complicate things, simple things are easy to replicate with the same results.