Audio Research discontinuing lower lines components?

I have looked at several components in Audio Research's line and they are discontinuing the LS17-se, PH8, and PH6.  They discontinued the DAC 8.  I know there is a new Ref 6 to replace the Ref 5se and their is a new Ref Phono 3 to replace the Ref Phone 2se coming out.  I talked to my dealer and he stated that Audio Research seems to be making their components look more McIntosh like in the Galeo series. 

The dealer stated their isn't going to be anything that he has heard that will replace the other lines at this point and that AR will be starting at the LS-27, which is $7500 for preamps.  The Ref 75se is the beginning of the line for Amps, which I know, but man are they going the Mac route with prices, nothing to replace the DAC 8 and the other DAC in the line is $11,000, what's up with this, have you guys heard anything more. 

The starting point for AR equipment is getting pretty high and the only way a newer person without means will be able to afford it will be to buy use, which could send the used prices up if there isn't anything else in the line.  What do you guys think and what have you heard?
I have an LS 17SE which when I bought it here I was paying to much for it, but I love it and did look at the LS27 here thinking about upgrading because mine is loosing value (there is one for sale for 1K less then what I paid - ouch). If you look at interior photos of all the LS models they all look similar except for maybe better output cap's so I wonder how much better the more expensive LS27 would be
So, I've been reading this thread out of interest only because I was able to hear the GSi75 tube integrated paired with Wilson Audio Sabrina's several months ago and I can't get that out of my mind. This was at an audio GTG in SoCal and there were a number of participants who really liked this system. It was the least expensive system at this GTG while the most expensive was the Wilson Audio XLFs with D'Agostino separates. Nearly all other equipment in the room was Wilson/ARC though. I've heard much more expensive Wilson/ARC systems in the past and at this GTG but not really cared for them, especially at their advanced pricing. But the GSi75 tube integrated with Wilson Audio Sabrina's on the other hand was very nice indeed; musical and lovely to behold. But at $16k each for these two pieces, I'll have to pass. Even used is a real stretch. I see where folks are coming from with this new pricing strategy, $16k for an integrated and another $16k for a small set of floor standers, that's serious $$. Oh well, now I gotta go find a more affordable new dream.
I haven't heard those 2 pieces but I am very familiar with the Wilson and ARC sound. I would say for 12 to 15k on the used market you can get a comparable sound. You just need to do your due diligence and take your time.