Does mfg's name/model affect your opinion of sound

Many years ago a local audio store (RIP) demoed several tube amps & pre-amps. Some were McIntosh, some were Audio Research, etc. all high end and expensive.

I couldn't help but think that the McIntosh to be "better" sounding than the others since it had the highest price tag and the sexiest front panel design (compare them with their original front panel: ugly!).

I naively assumed the reason they are so expensive is because they must sound better.

Having over 40 years of tube experience, I now judge them purely on the merits of sound as I perceive it.

Does the brand name and price of equipment influences your hearing judgement and buying decision?

Eg: more expensive, therefore must be better.

How many of us have the luxury of listening to a blind test and just hear the music without knowing who made the equipment?
I think the influence of model number is even more important. Audiophiles are willing to spend $1,000s just because it says "Mk II", "Reference" or "Signature". Audiophiles are willing to spend $10,000s if it says "Anniversary".

Or Art For The Ear (Burmester) but some say it is Fart For ... in reality?
Just a rumor imo....
What has worked most effectively for me is listening.I attend live jazz venues frequently(most often unamplified). This really trains your hearing over time to appreciate the beauty of live trumpets,saxaphones,piano,guitar etc.

What ever components mimic this sound the closest the better they are IMO.Brand and price become irrelevant at this point, it`s simply how convincing/faithful the reproduced sound is.Simple I realize but it works very well for me.Some very exspensive components lack this natural sound and some inexspensive gear is very authentic.
I used to think that way, and always had a lot of respect for the Audio Research I bought one of their amps a long time ago...I think it was the D120...anyway, it was a poor performer at best. I probably would think that anything Ayre makes is excellent...but now I'd have to hear it first.
If there is any science to our hobby, and a designer is looking to address any deficiencies he feels are there, then you would think that components from a single manufacturer would have a similar sound, a "house sound" if you will. If they all sounded different, you would wonder what the designer's criteria was, or is it just random thoughts and lets see what happens. I would be suspect of such products. A manufacturer should put his sound where his mouth is.