Okay stupid me (yeah I'll admit that) bought a 512Mb stick of DDR4002 Buffalo RAM instead of DDR400. After changing out virtually everything on this build (including IDE cables and drives both optical and hard) I popped out the memory and made my discovery.

Loading in a standard stick of DDR400 RAM allowed Windows XP to load successfully.

I wish when memory manufacturers went to dual channel, they did something different like mounting keys to differentiate between dual and single channel memory. I spent almost four hours banging my head against the table trying to figure why the OS wouldn't load. I even tried the Vista beta dvd and hit the same problem.

Word of advice, if you cannot load Windows check the RAM first.