Get a good grounding in the basics (is that a tautology?) before you read all of the conflicting opinions. There are, generally speaking, two camps here; those who believe in magic and those who don't. Unsurprisingly, it is NOT magic that works.
Hi ChiyanDC, best thing to do is take your time, read plenty and follow posts in different topics. Reading the opinions of others will help you decide what you want from a sound system. I'm new to this too, but I read the posts for about a year before making up my mind. I decided to build a small SET valve amp (parts are still in a cardboard box), fullrange Fane 12-250 tc speakers (built but not fully assembled) and I put together a RPI- Hifiberry DAC.