It depends on your personal circumstances.
I´ve built my first AR from parts and it runs like a champ. I would get the PSA´s and toroughly check them over for function.
All around, they´re good to go IF you are able to check them out once you get them. Like with most manufacturers, sometimes lemons make it out the door!
For the Price of a Colt, you can get one PSA with another one as a complete spare parts kit....
: (or loaner rifle)
Something to keep in mind though:
*I* would like to have at least 10 magazines for each and 500-1000rds emergency rounds that you don´t touch for each.
That single high Quality rifle or the 10 lower Quality rifles will help you absolutely nothing if you don´t have the means to feed them. Can´t stress that enough.
So that´s expenses you gotta keep in mind too.
If 1200 is your total Budget, i´d rather get one gun and spend the rest on mags, ammo, a good sling, red dot sight, spare parts!..... you get my drift!
If i was feeling like cheaping out, i would forego the RDS first because i´m comfortable with Irons.
Maybe a used Colt, that already comes with a few extra mags and good Irons or maybe even an RDS.
Or: PSA comlete lowers with BCM uppers. Not sure if your Budget would do, but the Upper all around is a lot more important for proper function!
For disclosure: my Franken AR is made out of Colt, DPMS and Aero Precision parts and it wears an older Aimpoint CompM2 which can be found for a good Price nowadays. As well as a very good Daniel Defense A1.5 fixed rear sight.
I also have one spare barrel (another Colt), a spare bolt carrier Group (for quickchange should the bolt go south), and spare kits for all pins and springs. I can almost build another rifle from the parts.
Keep in mind, it´s not solely for end of the world SHTF but also for the purpose that my kid can rebuild the gun 40 years down the road when he might not be able to buy a new one but is allowed to still have the one that´s been grandfathered in.
I´m comfortable with that. It´s not the newest stuff out there but it gets the Job done.
My advice is: read alot about AR´s preferably on AR15.com and make up your own mind on what will get the Job done for you.
Safe the 1200 for now and do a couple of weeks of Research, maybe add a couple more Dollars over this time. Don´t rush it. Then make an informed decision and a well rounded purchase including mags an ammo.
Post Scriptum: I am low speed, high drag (as opposed to a high speed low drag Operator), not bad with guns but i´m not the ultimate warfighter. So my guns gotta do. I´m also not a Pro-Racer, so while i would like to own a 600 horseower car and drive fast, i know i´m not THAT good. So it would be a waste. My 150 HP commuter does fine for me.
Buy your gear according to your means and experience, don´t go tooo overboard. You will get much more outta that Approach when it Comes to prepping and free up funds for other important things.
I´d rather have a 2 year food supply and a source of clean water then the XX gun. Then lay low and try not to be seen.
Take that from a gun nut with more then 20 guns. I love guns. But when it comes to prepping, they are but one imortant Piece of the puzzle.... important BUT still an afterthought at least if you have at least a minimum like a pistol (good to hide and Keep on all the time) and a rifle for the more serious stuff.