Buying decision time, or Time for a sanity check?

Have you ever asked yourself this question:

“Why in the world did I buy that?”

… or what moves you to buy anything else for that matter?

I get the impression much of the time, many sales are driven either by brand loyualty or familiarity. There is something to be said about popularity and technology, as well. However, in the realm of high end audio, attaining the best sound is the undisputed goal. Along that path many ‘audiophiles’ must make decisions about current or up and coming product manufacturers. Each and every decision revolves around a number of items, with performance being routinely at the top of the list. Although performance seems chiefly the reason we purchase items I do not believe it solely why an item (s), finds some way into our homes.

Many audio enthusiasts, myself included, must compromise the amount of performance they seek due to other constraints. . . Pricing, WAF, compatibility, confidence level, or preconceived notions, be they real or imagined, I think play a part.. but I’ve been wrong before.

Thus, when new companies arise offering us vaunted or so called, instituted value, or bleeding edge technology, or just a new slant on an old theme, what is it that promotes you to diminish your savings account? If there is ‘ONE’ main reason that will swing you to buy a product, what usually is that reason?

I’m simply curious as to what it is that drives our decisions for purchasing audio gear. Mainly. Naturally there are more than simply one or two of the following list which play important roles in the final analysis for myself. For me it comes down more often to value than to anything else. I am not a “no compromise” audiophile. Technology, although quite important enough, is also not the main qualifier. Color and style usually do not matter to any great extent with the exception of speaker coloring. I simply hate black… but that’s just me, and at times I have overlooked that too. I do so admire a good looking remote that can operate universally, many other electronics, and some kitchen appliances as well. I’ve always seen that as additive. One can not have too many remotes you know.

It’s your company, so you have to?
Your “electronic clock”, is ticking?
“Stereophile’s” say so?
Ego? (just got to have the latest & greatest)
Product recognition?
The kids have finally moved out?
Easy to read owner’s manual? (I’m lukewarm here)
Free delivery?
Brand loyalty?
Arrival of a new credit card?
Batteries included? (always a plus for me)
Payment Terms?
A darned good looking remote?
Future upgrade options?
Strictly the sound?
The I.R.S. made a mistake in your favor?
A darned good looking salesperson?
My stuff is ancient!

So what is it, friends? What are the main reasons you lay down your hard earned, or easily quaffed duckets for the “XYZ” Model “Eight” series X?

Do make an effort to be fair with yourself in this regard, and as always, have fun.
I buy if I think I will be satisfied with the product.

But since hi-end audio is largely about:
* creating dissatisfaction - otherwise there is no inpetus to keep buying.
* there is no consensus on right and wrong, only preferences and opinions.
* the latest and greatest is obsolete in a few years (or months in the case of Musical Fidelity).
* No component is perfect.
* Differences IMHO are pretty small although they tend to be overblown by Audio Industry. I think it was Art Dudley or Michael Fremer who even admitted hi-end audio, on an absolute scale, is about small nuances.

I think long and hard before shelling out money.
I admit to buying without audition, which is insane, but if you buy almost exclusively 2nd hand, you often have no choice. I sometimes wonder if I had developed a relationship with a dealer and bought a coherent system of new components carefully auditioned, whether I would have done better. Probably not, I have chosen items which have a pretty uniform and strong support and have'nt been disappointed.
CJ Premier 17
Pass labs Aleph 3
Lavardin IT(current use)
Viva Solista(" ")
Acoustic Zen Cables
I am reaching a point of diminishing returns, when I need to get off the escalator. I am very happy with my system and think any major improvement is going to be mega expensive. Time to sit back and enjoy the music?
I think it comes down to... If she doesn't "mind", then it doesn't "matter"...(;^)...
I've long since been a proponent of getting the Department of Transportation to place warning signs near Audio dealerships... such as

"CAUTION Vehicles may abruptly leave or enter roadway without advance notice! "

YES, IT’S USUALLY A QUESTION OF “Mind over matter”. Who minds,and how much it matters.…that, and a “well written owners manual”, of course.