Giving Advice without recommending your own equipment

I've noticed over the years that you can't ask a general question on Audiogon without getting people answering who with a specific model recommendation.  They  think the answer to every question is to just buy their model.  For example:

OP:  What is the difference between R2R and FPGA DACS.

ans 1:  I have a model x that is R2R and you should just buy it.  it is spectacular.

ans 2:  I have model y what is FPGA and it is spectacutlar.  buy it.

ans 3:  I have model z.  I don't know if it is FPGA, R2R or what, but you should buy it.

ans 4:  I have owned both.  I found the FPGA to have the following attributes..... and the R2R to be more ......  The models i owned were not exactly in the same price range so YMMV.  But my opinion is that I like ______ better.

Which of those answers sound more useful?  I'm just suggesting that your advice is more meaningful if you can refraim from recommending your latest and greatest piece of equipment.   I would totally ignore answers 1 thru 3.  Ans 4 is well thought out and give you a useful opinion.

Sometimes people ask for specific model advice from people who have heard certain models.  Of course 99.9% of the comments come from people who love their model x.  Apparently nobody ever buys something and decides it is not that great (I wonder why there is so much used equipment for sale).  But comments about specific models are appropriate then.

Just a few thoughts about how to navigate theough the forums and sort the wheat from the chaff.  there is lots of good advice here and lots of bad advice and this is more of an example of useless advice and how to avoid giving it.




Many responses could come from dealers recommending the latest cash cow (dealer’s cut maximized on said item). Sometimes, it’s his forum pied piper who’s on the take that’s recommending it.

Sometimes, you’ll see a guy talking something up (advertising) when he also has it listed, trying to get rid of it. Yeah, he is in love with it so much (NOT) that he’s also trying to get rid of it!

And then, of course, there’s the fanatical fan boy trying to convince himself that whatever he bought has to be the best thing ever! He emptied his wallet, hence, how could it be anything but the best?! the all knowing seer that he is....

It takes some time to categorize the usernames of all these categories of jokers (mentioned above) into specific pockets. It gets easier from there...


I was planning to start a guidance thread at some point for the rookies seeking advice.

How to spot a incognito dealer

How to spot a incognito pied piper

How to spot a forum shiister


Guidance material........

But, maybe, i’ll just sit back snicker at all of it for now 😁

Yes, there is subjective bias in much of the reviews, but hoping for better non-partial evaluations is wishful thinking.  Sifting through possibly bias recommendations is still better than no data at all, and I find great value in a component preferred vs another component- that’s allows me to identify relative value at it’s price point.

Also, I’m not one to think one size fits all.  I rarely suggest my own gear unless is fits the requirements of the user,  unlike a certain past Agoner who suggested Tekton as the universal solution.