Im looking for a new set of irons similar to ap2 but cheaper. Id like the ap2s but not ready to spend that much money on a new set. Any ideas?
Cobra Amp Forged, Cleveland 588 TT, Mizuno JPX 825 Pro, etc. Probably for the money the Cleveland clubs will be the cheapest, though they are still good clubs. Just about every manufacturer makes a comparable club to the AP2's so you'll just have to do some leg work and find out which clubs you like and are in your price bracket.
What's your budget, how much can you spend? Will help narrow down your choices. As @FooFader said, the best option might be older AP2 models.
For the AP2 models, check out the larger golf shops and see what they got on trade-in. There's plenty of used AP2s, and on occasion a slightly used set that went for a quick trade.
Some shops chart the recipe of the used clubs (whether lie angle was changed, shaft shortened or lengthened).
Irons don't have to be expensive if you let some other poor mug buy them brand new and you do your bit by recycling old gear. The AP2 is a great iron in any model and can be had for a good price used - meaning you save both ways and it's the genuine article and not "something close but cheap". If you really must buy new clubs (someone does after all) then perhaps you need to start saving - the AP2 is worth it.
Do you have any close-by golf stores or fitters with a selection of clubs? You can probably play with lots of clubs, but there can be pretty big differences to how they feel and work for you. The ideal is in my opinion always to hit various clubs and see how they feel and work, before buying something. Figuring out what type of clubs (blade, GI, SGI etc) you want before going can make it easier. I looked at lots of different clubs online and had 2-3 sets I was interested in. During the fitting, neither of those sets felt good to me and I went with a brand and clubs I hadn't spent much time looking at before.