what are your top "audio bargins" in your system history?

It is great to have all the money you need to have the best and endless upgrading.  But what about the components you've had that were inexpensive that turned out to be favorites of yours?


Aerial 10t speakers purchased for $1000 in 2005. Still keep these. They're champions

Thorens TD125 all original turntable in the og box $150 at church yard sale



Mad Scientist Audio's Graphene Contact Enhancer

Audiolab CDT6000 and Tweak Audio EVS 1200 power amp. Beast of an amp based on dual mono IcePower AS1 1200 modules and lots of tweaks. He made less than 20. What a bargain @ $2700.
Audio Alchemy DDP-1 + PS 5. Dac/Pre + outboard PS. I bought the DDP-1 used sans PS 5, and searched for 5 month for the power supply to no avail. Finally I contacted the manufacturer who had one left. The improvement was/is well worth the $600 he charged me
All 3 pieces have anchored a lot of ancillary improvements for 3+ years. The AA comes up occasionally make sure it comes with the PS

All the Dunlavy speakers through the years and most recently the Doge Dac 7 Mk II. This DAC is nowhere close to broken in but is already the best I've ever heard.


Reference 3A MM deCapo i speakers. After decades of a parade of speakers from ProAc, Thiel, Merlin, DeVore and others, the de Capos are the ones that most often surprise me with what I’m hearing. And, a Nelson Pass designed Amp Camp Amp in my office system. Remarkable sound at a silly cheap price and a weekend of fun building it.


In my admittedly small amount of gear over the past ten years or so I would have to say the near new Maggie LRS I picked up for $550 a few years ago.  Even at retail they are a fantastic deal IMO.