Not me per se, I'm still tracking down the last few cards I need for my masterpieces sets. Interestingly enough, I still get quite a few emails asking me various questions. Some of these are from people that frankly want to know what to buy.
There are a few things to consider. First, what's your budget? Honestly, if you have to worry about a budget of $30-$50....save your money. Am I taking all of the fun out of this? Sure, but take it from someone that knows. You are going to end up hating yourself for buying a box and not getting much. If you truly have a couple hundred bucks to spend, ask yourself what you want? If you want to have some continuing fun, build a set then find a set builder box like Ginter or Heritage and buy a few of those. Right now Heritage is the best deal going. Ginter is incredibly expensive and the hits aren't worth a damn; conversely, for 3 boxes of ginter, you can get 6 boxes of Heritage. You'll get some extras, maybe a chance to pull some SSP's and some trade bait of jersey cards. With ginter, you are essentially paying $50 for 2 more jersey cards and no real SSP's. Sure you get mini's but...they aren't worth the extra cash. To me, Ginter is worth about $50 a box and Heritage about $40.
Basketball N/A - There isn't a current Basketball set that is worth buying to build a set.
So what else is there? Well there's always going for the big hit. What's the best way to go about this? Hmmm, that's a good question. Here's my view. A hit product is one of those where you esentially get an entire case worth of hits in a box, more or less. You just don't get all of those lovely base cards. I will warn you, the excitement is there when you open the pack/box but the let down can be quick and brutal. For example, 2007 Topps Triple Threads Football had one of the worst returns ever. These were anywhere from $125-$200 depending on when. Same with Topps Progression...yuck.
So it comes down to finding a value break where there is some reward. One of my favorite breaks is 2007 Upper Deck Premier.
See a break here: http://iamjoecollector.blogspot.com/2010/01/january-2-boxes-2007-premier-football.html
Each box runs about $90 from Atlanta Sports cards: 2007 Premier But beware of 2007 Ultimate, it was so bad that DA Cardworld used to give it away with a purchase of a certain amount. Anyway, Those rookie jersey autos are pretty nice even though they are sticker autos. The alternative is to go for a box of exquisite. That's about 4 boxes of Premier for 1 box of Exquisite. The RPA's are 1 per box but these are more easily searched. Basically, you can pick the A level RPA box out of the case of exquisite so don't buy a cheap orphan box off ebay. Obviously these days Exquisite is a college uni product which isn't for everyone and costs a ton of money. Your two best bets are National Treasures and Topps 5 Star, lots of good hits. Contrast that with buying 4-5 boxes of Topps Chrome. Yikes. You are playing with taking a massive loss and having a ton of base cards whereas 5 star and NT are full of alternative hits other than the RPA's to get value from.