Am I broken? Am I stuck? Do I have to return my audiophile card now?

Hi Everyone,


I hope you're all doing well!  I am looking for a little advice or input and see if others have experienced this, or am I broken?


First, I want to say I am a Wilson fan boy.  Love 'em, hate 'em, whatever, but I love their speakers.  I will also fully admit that I've been in love the with the idea of owning Wilson's since I was a teenager.  Well, about a year ago things worked out - I had the money and we moved into a house (from a condo) - so I auditioned a few different speakers but the Wilson's were what ended up being my choice, specifically SabrinaX's.  I LOOOOVE them.  I drive them with an RME ADI-2 DAC into a Luxman L-509X.  To me, it sounds fantastic.  What one reviewer said about the Sabrina's is what I feel most accurately expresses how I feel about them.  It was something along the lines of, "I enjoy every moment I spend listening to the Sabrina's and think about listening to them every moment I am not listening to them."  


But the Sabrina's have one flaw.  They aren't Sasha's, or really, WATT/Puppies as those were the speakers my young self always wanted.  But I wrote off the Sasha's at the time because they were more money, and are MUCH bigger.  Life was good.


But then my dealer had a Wilson event and I met the one and only Peter McGrath.  What cool dude.  Anyway, I mentioned to him my love for Sasha's and he fired back that the DAW's were going to be soon replaced that my dealer could probably work out a pretty sweet deal on a pair. 


My dealer auditioned the DAW's for me with a pretty modest (relatively speaking) amp, at my request.  A Hegel H120 using the internal DAC/Streamer.  Well, the DAW's easily blew my Sabrina's out of the water here.  The imaging was far, far sharper, bigger deeper, taller stage, far more detailed, actual SLAMM and the dynamics...  Oh brother, the dynamics....


So here's the thing, my dealer is amazing just doesn't know how to say "no" so he's offered me a smookin' good deal on a trade in for my Sabrina's for the Sasha's.  I can very comfortably afford to do the swap.  My wife is fine with the size/looks of the DAW's.  Everything is a go!  But...  But I come home and listen to my Sabrina's and think, "This is friggin amazing!" and so I am left not pulling the trigger.  I'm actually happy with the sound, despite knowing that there is better.


The other side of this is that I used to want to pursue a better amp/DAC for my Sabrina's but now I don't really.  After having heard the DAW's I know the Sabrina's will never reach that level, regardless of gear.  So spending on a amp/DAC seems silly when, if I am going to spend the money, I know I should just get the DAW's as that will offer a greater improvement.

It's like I've stale mated myself!  

I don't want to change my Sabrina's because they sound so good.  But the DAW's do sound better.  But I am happy with the Sabrina's!  And so the circle goes...

So am I broken?  Am I to be stripped of my audiophile card?  Has anyone else experienced this where they can fully acknowledge that there is better than what they have, but still not have the motivation to make the leap?  Or maybe I'm just being cheap (I do also want to support my dealer because he's amazing)?

Maybe I'm alone here in how I feel.  But I suspect there are a few audio-friends who may understand.

Happy listening,




It's not a life or death decision, so it really doesn't matter what you decide.  Kudos for getting your wife's input.  If it was my choice I'd keep the existing system and take the wife to Barcelona for a week.

Wow. That is a conundrum. 

How about this. Talk, or pay your dealer to audition the new speakers in your home. Then let your ears / heart decide. The problem is you are actually comparing a known with and unknown… You have not heard the new speakers in your acoustic environment. I think this might make the decision easier.

My take is, if the cost is not a problem, you will always long for the Sasha's, trade in your Sabrina's and enjoy. Life is too short to begrudge yourself.

But you are an audio nut (like me) who will always search for something better. Next step will be upgrading your amp... It never really ends.

Enjoy the hobby!


There is always something better.  And remember, your dealer stays in business by selling. Your dealer has no problem taking your Sabrina's in on trade. Until you try other speakers in your room, system, setup - no telling what is going to be "better".

Agree with @ghdprentice to try for an in-home demo especially since your dealer has a hard time saying no. That’d obviously be the optimal scenario and would likely firmly and confidently answer all your questions in about an hour or so.

Last thought — I think your DAC, while not bad, is not up to the rest of your system and big gains in imaging, soundstage, tonality, and musicality among other things can be had FWIW.  Anyway, best of luck with this and let us know how it works out if you could.

Like others said, try them in your home and if you like them, trade in your present speakers.  They may or may not sound as good as what you heard at the dealers.  Your room has a lot to do with the sound. 

+1 @ozzy

My experience is: when you have the itch, you itch. (All things being equal like “affordability”.) The itch will go away, at some point, afterwards…


And @bigfatpaulie yes you are crazy. We are all crazy here. But it’s okay. Because music is that special and trying to reproduce it to the best of your ability is super cool. 

Adding my voice to the chorus:

1. the in-room performance is very important; I'd not buy without a home audition (or the possibility to reverse the deal within the first, say, 24 hours);

2. I had the ADI dac and I returned it. It was... decent. My current Accuphase DP 550 player / dac is really something else: richer, more complex and realistic timbres, much more musical etc. By all means, do try to listen to a few dacs in the $4000-5000 range in your own system (with a good power cord!). Weirdly, I feel the need to say "Please!".


I say do it ...  but as an owner of a RME adi2  I think it may be somewhat of a bottle neck.   It is a great little DAC no doubt,  but I think a better DAC that is on par with the rest of your gear would be a good move even if you don't upgrade the speakers. 

I agree with @donquichotte it's not about if the Sabrina's or Sasha's or better it's which sounds better in your room. It sounds like you have a good dealer see if he can loan the Sasha's for a trial or do a trade with a right of return.

Also agreed you don't know if something is a bottleneck in your system until you replace it so it's quite possible you could get the Sabrina's to sound even better.

Am I reading this right? The Sasha's weigh 240Lbs?

Doesn't sound that easy to move them in and out for a trial demo. Unless your dealer is Tyrus..


@bigfatpaulie what size is your room? The reason I ask is the Sabrina is more room agnostic than the Sasha. Too small and the Sasha's may not even sound as good as your Sabrinas.

It sounds to me like you haven’t finished your experience with the Sasha’s yet. You are being pulled due to the opportunity and the savings on a future upgrade. While the urge to upgrade will always be there, the urge to ‘downgrade’ - or ‘holdgrade’? - is unusual and deserves some attention. Maybe the only feeling worse than what could have been is what you had but let go. I’m guessing if you talked to the dealer he would hold the deal for a while. It couldn’t hurt to find out how long.  

I have a pair of Sabrina sans X . I retired then sold my car 😆 and still bought them pre-owned. Love them. Sure I'd love the DAW or even the Vs. the Sabrina construction is very different from the larger models via separate compartments. If you have positive WAF quick , get em before she changes her mind 😆. Happy listening 🎶

OP, You say you’re happy with the Sabrina’s. To me you sound like a man who knows what he likes. I think @onhwy61 Barcelona idea is a good one. ;-)

If your system sounds great to you now then that might be a sign to just enjoy it. You can always upgrade later. 

“Upgradeitse” has no cure and is a slippery slope. The SabrinaX is a very good speaker. A friend has a pair.  It will not stop with the DAWs. You will want new electronics. A new DAC.  Better cables. Footers?  

Focus on fully treating your room once you get to the Wilson level dude. If wife won't let you ( i.e.,  u don't have a dedicated room), just quit buying sht. Buying things of a certain caliber without a fully treated room is the silliest thing that audiophiooliacs tend to do 

All the incognito dealers covertly advertising sht on this forum (the very pathetic ones watching out for their wallets all day, while posing as regular forum helpfuls) will now attack this comment in 5...4...3...2...1...secs. 

A close friend did the same upgrade to the Sasha

They sound terrific.  He is thrilled.  Try them in your home.   They come with wheels so you can move them around much easier than other speakers.




Having heard both and now owning alexia v’s  as long  as your room isn’t too small you won’t regret making the change  the daws are clearly a step up. Much better presence and soundstage
as has been stated if you can try them that of course would be best but they are beasts. If not I’d  still say go for it you won’t regret it. you can afford it and have your wife on board😎

of course you will want to upgrade other components

but that is a separate journey

Having heard both and now owning alexia v’s  as long  as your room isn’t too small you won’t regret making the change  the daws are clearly a step up. Much better presence and soundstage
as has been stated if you can try them that of course would be best but they are beasts. If not I’d  still say go for it you won’t regret it. you can afford it and have your wife on board😎

of course you will want to upgrade other components

but that is a separate journey

I was a Wilson Watt fan from when I first heard them decades ago (mid to late 80s or something). I couldn't afford 'em, but now I could easily...however...I now think pretty much everything Wilson (and many other expensive "drivers in a box" designs) sells is stupidly overpriced relative to their sound. Speaker boxes made from some special cement-like compound in any color...meh...drivers in a box. More care and manufacturing skill goes into a $4,000 Collings guitar than any $10,000 count me out. Maine based company...driver cones in a box for more than a 911.


I can very comfortably afford to do the swap.

My wife is fine with

Are you nuts? Get the better ones!!!!!

@wolf_garcia - what is the relevance of comparing a Wilson speaker to a Collings guitar. They are completely separate things. There's a lot more complexity in my Apple computer than either - so what?



I agree with the issue of the DAC first then the speakers. Take your time to research and test other DAC’s before making any decisions about speakers. And in the middle of that testing regime bring the bigger speakers in for a test… while you have a great DAC on hand. You’ll know when.

.......better to '' build '' your system around those speakers which will not be for sale for a long time. I would do the '' swap '' now and get used to the DAW's sound and bulld around that sound that you soo enjoy.  

Just do in home session to compare, then pick. ONLY way to do it for ANY speaker on ANY budget on ANY system.

STOP torturing yourself. Your ears are your ears. Be happy with what sounds good to you and not other people or especially dealers! We would all need three jobs to pay for everything dealers or manufacturers told us we need. 

It sounds to me that you have found contentment in the quality/sound of the equipment that you have currently. You know you, so it’s up to you to decide if this ends up being a small improvement in sound reproduction will you still be happy that you spent the additional money. If regret isn’t in your future then go for it. Deals will always be had in the future. But if regret is an old buddy of yours then maybe you should consider investing the funds somewhere else? Say your DAC? There is a point with diminishing returns and ever more expensive components that you eventually need to stop. Even if you have your wife’s blessing. Maybe you know you are at that point. 

About 99% of us do not have as good of a system as you.  Most of us are still happy with what we have.  Unless the $$$ is burning a hole in your pocket,  I would suggest staying away from your HI-FI for a few days or a week.  Then go ahead and see if there is any excitement to be had.  Then make your own decision.

Seems like you love what you currently have, but have not maximized close to their potential? Like others have said, room size and treatment really matters most. It’s possible the DAWs could way underperform in your room. I’d keep the Sabrina’s, treat your room, get a pair of REL 810s or carbon special subs, upgrade your DAC, make sure your equipment isolation is adequate and then hear what the Sabrina’s can really do. 

OP if I were you while your wife is giving you the go ahead ,do the trade ASAP, If you love the Shasha you will continue to dream to see them in your room.But prepare yourself to match them like what you have now.Twenty years ago I dreamed of having Andra Eggleston and bought them. Iam still happy I bought them.

You are screwed. If you make the trade you will always wonder if your old speakers sounded "better". if you don't make the trade you will always wonder if that was a mistake. I speak from years of experience. I would do it just to scratch the itch.

I don't see a Stalemate being the created situation to be resolved.

I would suggest it is a dichotomy or dilemma which is being faced up to.

Here is my take, maybe the Sabrina's used with your system in your listening environment are producing something quite special as a sound.

Maybe a little more investigation into learning how to couple the Speakers to the Room in a improved manner and learning how to control room reflections and room modes, will bring even more to the forefront, resulting in being further impressed by the qualities of the Speaker.

It will be a punt to believe that bringing another Speaker Home, even a sibling Speaker from a similar design ethic, will be the next level of sound quality.

Keep in mind the day the Wilson Speakers come out of the Manufacturers Testing Facility and commenced on their Journey into the homes of their owners. The speakers are already on a slippery slope, when it comes to matching the performance as a comparison to the one the design team were experiencing.

A end users listening environment is quite capable of trashing any speaker, it takes a thought out approach to offer a Speaker a suitable environment, to offer some of its best traits designed into it.

I was in a similar quandary.

I'd gone back and forth between Devore and Joseph Audio speakers, ended up buying original Joseph Perspective speakers when they'd just come out with the new graphene version.  My idea was to eventually send them for the upgrade.

Over the years I had an "Audio fund" account where I'd put little bits of saved money but mostly if I sold any gear the money went in to that account for new gear.

I'd finally used up almost all the funds, and had sold my last bit of gear more fun money to play with.   Then Devore came out with the O/baby and I was also considering grabbing those to have the Devore sound around "at hand."  Or, put the money in to some things I needed to upgrade for my home theater.

So the question was mostly whether to put that last bit of money, and it was still a substantial amount, to upgrading my speakers.    It was so easy to rationalize either way:  "The Perspectives already sound AMAZING.  What do I need the upgrade for?   Just use the money for an actually NEW speaker for the collection like the Devores, or finally friggin' do that HT upgrade you've been needing!"

At the same time I sort of saw the Josephs as my end-game speakers.  They were the most expensive speakers I've owned, and no way I'd be throwing any more money to upgrade to a different speaker.   So I wanted them to be "the best they can be."   I just knew that despite all the rationalization above about "they sound fine!" that...just being audiophile me...I'd continually wonder about how they would sound with the upgrade, so maybe just do that and call it quits.

So I decided to pay for the upgrade.  Result:  yes they sound amazing.   Way better?  Not necessarily, but  But it does seem to have eradicated my upgrade itch.  They are as good as they can be, I used the strategy of "throwing money at it until I can't throw any more" so I don't even contemplate money going towards new speakers (or other gear).   I'm set...partially out of necessity.  And in that way it's sort of freeing :-)



When is your birthday? You sound like a Gemini! Not that that is good or bad just I live with one and know how this goes.

You don’t have to turn in your audiophile card. In fact, you will be issued an Audiophile Platinum card.

Go for it!

You like the sound of them. You have the space for them. You obviously have the money to get them without having your house go into foreclosure. Mostly, score high on the Wife Acceptance Factor. As a Platinum Audiophile, you will deal with what issues may come ahead.

An Audiophile is Broken or Stuck when their Beer budget can’t keep up with their Champagne taste.

Anyway, I mentioned to him my love for Sasha's and he fired back that the DAW's were going to be soon replaced that my dealer could probably work out a pretty sweet deal on a pair.

Playing the devil's advocate, what if you like the DAW's replacement better than the DAW?  

Yoyoyaya (!) comparison (did you actually read my post?) simply regards the crafting and parts cost (not counting research...still...) aspect of uber expensive speakers...and your complex  Apple computer isn't relevant because it's made by robots and slaves and arguably not ridiculously overpriced. 

Okay, round 2.  I replied but Audiogon had a pop up - something about a wanting my phone number or whatever - and it ate my last reply.  Sick programming.  Anyway...

First, thank you to everyone who took the time to reply and provide input.  I really appreciate it!!  Thank you.  I want to go though the main points brought up as they are really good.

Second, I want to talk about the suggestion of an in-home demo.  My dealer actually suggested this right away and offered it at no cost (I mentioned they are awesome, right?).  I passed because, well, frankly, I know it's a lot of work for them and I'm not sure it would give me any new information.  When I auditioned the Sasha's I did so in the same room that I auditioned my Sabrina's.  The Sasha's were positioned in the same place relative the walls, each other and me as they would be in my home.  Yes, their room sounds different than mine, but I have a good enough of a baseline to contrast having heard the Sabrina's in both rooms. 

Another comment was about size and the Sasha's being possibly too big.  I'm not really worried about this for a few reasons.  First, I know a few other people who have Alexia's in rooms smaller than mine and they sound great.  Second, my wife doesn't think they are too big.  And, I mean, isn't that the ultimate test?!  If your wife doesn't think the speakers are too big for the family room, they simply aren't too big right?!  HAHA!  :)

Third: DAC's.  I hear ya, I really do.  A while back I mentioned getting a better DAC to try and increase the performance of my Sabrina's to my dealer.  Before I could finish the sentence he was loading a PS Audio DSD Mk2 in my trunk for me to try.   I should point out my dealer rocks.  For me, the DAC was better but the difference was honestly pretty subtle, especially given it is thousands and thousands of dollars more.  I'm certain the PS Audio is a great DAC, but to my ears, it didn't offer the incremental increase in MY system that $7-$8k more would need to make for me to justify it.  I also want to talk about a few of the DAC's I've had a home are various times over the years.  I've had an MSB Analog, Bircasti M1, Schiit Yggy, Lampizator Lvl4, ANK Level 5, Chord DAVE, dCS Debussy and others. DAC's definitely make a difference but, to me, in MY experience the hierarchy of what has an impact goes something like this:

Room Placement
Room Treatment
Speaker Cables
Power Cables
Digital Cables

Now, this is MY experience.  YMMV.  And I know, you are 100% smarter than me, know more and my opinion is dumb and the most important thing is actually something different, etc, etc, etc.  That's okay, we can have different opinions and don't have to hate each other because of it.  I'll respect your view, so please extend the same courtesy.  The above is just based on my own personal, limited experience. 

So, to me, speakers make a much more significant impact to the sound than a DAC, and in this case the delta between the Sasha's and Sabrina's is smaller than the spend I would need to improve DAC's by a significant margin.  Basically, bang for my buck, right now, the Sasha's are the ticket.  

I also want to cement this idea by saying again when I auditioned the Sasha's I intentionally asked for a relatively modest amp/source.  The Hegel H120 is a great integrated but I'm willing to bet the DAC is at best as good as mine and the amp is inferior to the Luxman.  Basically, my kit behind the Sabrina's is better at home but the Sasha's were still by far and wide the better performer.  Even with a better DAC the Sabrina's will not reach the Sasha's performance. 

So why am I hesitating?  

Someone very nicely pointed out that my stereo is better than most people's.  I am SUPER fortunate to have it in my life.  It's a great pleasure and I enjoy it every single day.  I am very grateful that I have the Sabrina's in my life.  I have no urge to get better sound because, well, they already sound amazing!

But... There's always a but, right?  

Some people had a poster of a Ferrari on their wall as a kid.  I had a cut out from Stereophile of WATT/Puppies on my wall.  The Sasha's are the modern version, be it the DAW's, V's or whatever future version.  I have always wanted the iconic Wilson speaker.  Yes, it's an emotional decision - And that differs from anything else about this hobby of ours...  How exactly? 

So here is my dilemma, I am happy where I am.  But there is a childhood itch to get the Sasha's.  I could scratch it but does that ever live up the pent up desire?  Is it not better to sometimes hold on to the desire rather than realize the reality of it?

Satiating every want, after all, does not make someone happy.

Has anyone else ever willfully abstained from an upgrade for a similar reason?

Anyway, thank you all again for being my sounding board and listening to me ramble.  I really appreciate it.

(Cautiously copies this post to Notepad before hitting the post button....)

Well you can look at the picture of the Ferrari on you wall or you can buy one (assuming you can afford it).  No mystery to me what I'd do.  I've upgraded, downgraded and moved sideways (both directions) in my long audio journey.  Its what we do.  I've always found a speaker upgrade will typically be the biggest bang for your buck.  Seems like you already know that too.  Just go for it (its what we do) 🙃.

@bigfatpaulie Big Fat Paul: I read your long entertaining post. Thank you for coming back here. For the life of me however, I didn’t understand whether you decided to do it or not.


Granted, swapping speakers is the toughest decision one had to do in this hobby. Not just about figuring out what speakers to get, but also logistically. Especially big floor standing speakers. But it looks like your awesome dealer is doing this very easy for you. So what do you have to lose? How much (extra) money are we talking about here?


Huge differences compared to when you first posted here a short one year ago!



Throwing more money at a DAC or power cables/audio cables...?   Not what I'd suggest.  But, hey, we all have our opinions.

I fell in love with the sound of Devore O/96 speakers and was offered an in-home audition.  I abstained.  On major reason was that I may well have loved the sound of those in my room.  But in a way I didn't want that experience because I also knew they would be a harder fit aesthetically and ergonomically in my room, given it shares duty with home theater.  (Wide speakers like the Devores could encroach on my projection screen space behind my speakers).  So a bit of "better not go there."

Another area I have restrained myself is upgrading my home theater.  I've had a 4K capable projector for years, yet still haven't upgraded my source to 4K!  And I'm a home theater nut!   Unfortunately my system is complex enough that it would take upgrading all my video cables, and re-running new cabling through floors etc.  Now, if I were in Home Theater Upgrade mode that's something I probably would have done long ago.  But it's expensive and a hassle, and between the home theater and my music system, the money kept going to my music system.  I could always fall back on "the image I have is so bloody fantastic as it is, do I REALLY need to change it now?"

Now, since I've finally spent myself out on the music system, my HT is my next upgrade, when money permits.






The stars are aligned, I'd say for for it - make a check by your bucket list.  Seems no downside plus significant upside.  Worse case you can always go back to the Sabrinas, nothing is in stone.