What Gear Has Disappointed You?

While it's clearly not an absolute fact, we tend to have an expectation that a more expensive product should be better.  Within a given brand it really should be a fact, but because there's a wide range of factors in play when it comes to pricing it's not necessarily true when comparing different brands.  I think that it's fair to say that when we purchase a more expensive product we generally have an expectation that it'll perform better.  In the cases where our experience confirms this belief it can be the result of the product actually being better and/or some expectation bias. In a sense, it doesn't really matter which it is.

With this in mind, have you ever purchased a product expecting it to be superior only find that it was clearly inferior in your experience?



I very much prefer current gear too curtdr, though I do have fun with refurbished pieces 

Bryston amplification up to the SST range. I extensively auditioned them (in the ought’s) on 3 vastly different types of speakers (from Sonus Faber to Focal) at different dealers. The Bryston signature came through on all of them- thin, harsh, fatiguing with glare and grain.

Simply the worst soundings amps and pre’s I have ever heard for the huge price and reputation they commanded. At the time the Bryston engineers used to brag in magazine feature articles about their pro audio background and how they never did any listening tests and designed by measurement only. Yes it certainly showed. Why they would think this is some kind of positive selling point is beyond me.

But the SST2 range and onwards was a refresh by a different design team and are apparently a lot better, but I have not bothered with this brand since.

All Rega moving magnet cartridges - dull, boring, and thick sounding.

Ortofon SPU Royal N - harsh, shrill, lacking in musicality.  Not an Ortofon fan in general.

Vandersteen 2ce Signature - if you like a blanket over your music and own a 250 wpc solid state amplifier, you're in luck!!  



@larsman funny you should mention subs. I've gone with four Velodyne dd18+, and I'm very happy☺


Marantz CD63se player.  Unopened drawer (broken belt and laser head went bad.  Two of them ended up the same issues.