First of all... WELCOME! This is the best guitar forum and people are great here.
I second most of the advice given. To me, the key question when choosing RGs is trem usage. If you get Vai-olent on the trem, only the RG5xxx series will do. If you don't use it much, I'd go for a fixed bridge, an RG321 (cool thing you can choose between mahogany and basswood). An EPII should work fine too if you don't abuse it.
The problem with entry-level guitars is not so much quality, but consistency. They're all different, there are beauties and beasts, so I wouldn't buy an entry level guitar that I haven't tested thoroughly. One important feature to look at is fretwork. I have a cheapo S270 with a sweeeeet neck, but the frets are totally flat after just 2 years of playing
Cheapo guitars are high maintenance.
Pickups mean nothing to me, because I love trying lots of different ones until I find what works on that particular guitar, but that's just me. The infinity pups are very decent stock pups, you can use them until you decide what you need (and save up for it).
First I'd decide on what type of bridge I want, and then try to get the best bang for the buck. Fixed bridge: RG321. Trem abuse: RG5xxx (perhaps used, you can find them for about $300). Gentle trem use: RG3xxx, good bang for the buck.
Hope that helps, and let us know how it goes!