Unless you have money burning a hole in your pocket, start with the 2x4 set up and see if you like it; then start to buy toys. Spend the money on a decent iron, a non-steam one, that will last. I'm not saying $100 on a pro ski wax iron just the best you can get at the local hardware/home center. A couple of decent plastic scrapers and one or two small blocks of wax to cover a range of snow temps will get you going.
Try your local ski shop to see what they have. Usually, they carry what works in your area. Besides buying the wax from them will ease your conscience since you'll be saving all the money on doing it yourself. It is in your best interest to keep those guys around for when you need base work or boot fitting.
I have never met a back shop employee that doesn't respond well to donations of beer in return for information.
With all this talk of fluoro and hydrocarbon wax you need to keep in mind that fluoro waxes work best for wet snow. If your local conditions are dry and light, don't feel you need to spend a fortune on fluoro.
Liquid wax is easy but there is solvent in there to keep it liquid. It will never get as deep and stick around as long as a good iron job with a stick wax. Even paste wax is better that the liquid stuff. A good base of wax deep in the ski will protect the bases and provide the glide you're looking for. Paste is good for when you get the wax wrong and end up sticking, usually end of season or in unpredictable weather when there is a big swing in conditions.