I built one up myself for about $2300 with excellent components. Found a lightly used 2006 frame in my size for $750 (with a 5th element coil that I sold on ebay for $200, then bought a lightly used 2006 dhx-air for about $350.) Looked around for deals on all the components. Marzocchi All Mountain 1 was a new '05 for $400, and here's the rest of the build:
Wheelset Hope hubs/dt swiss rims $300.00
Headset Cane Creek S-6 $30.00
Brakeset Magura Louise FR $290.00
Shifters/R Der. SRAM Attack/Shimano XT $70.00
Front Der. XT $0.00 (came with the frame)
Crankset/BB XT $145.00
Cassette SRAM PG-970 11/34 $25.00
Seatpost Thomson Elite $0.00 (came with the frame)
Stem Hope gold 70mm 31.8mm 25 deg rise $50.00
Handlebar Race Face Deus XC 31.8mm 1” rise $45.00
Seat WTB $0.00 (came with the frame)
Grips ODI Ruffian Lock-ons $17.00
Pedals Crank Brothers 50/50 XX $70.00
with a lower-end brakeset, wheelset, and suspension, it could have easily come in under $2k. Take your time and shop around. Buying a used frame will cut the costs significantly.
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