When someone tells you it's a $40,000 amp, does it sound better?

I've always been a little bit suspicious when gear costs more than $25,000 . At $25,000 all the components should be the finest, and allow room for designer Builder and the dealer to make some money.

I mean that seems fair, these boxes are not volume sellers no one's making a ton of money selling the stuff.

But if I'm listening to a $40,000 amplifier I imagine me Liking it a whole lot more just because it costs $40,000. How many people have actually experienced listening to a $40,000 amplifier.  It doesn't happen that often and usually when you do there's nothing else around to compare it to.  

I'm just saying expensive gear is absolutely ridiculous.  It's more of a head game I'm afraid. Some how if you have the money to spend, and a lot of people do, these individuals feel a lot better spending more money for something.  Now you own it, and while listening to it you will always be saying to yourself that thing cost $40,000 and somehow you'll enjoy it more.




Well, Mr. Carter appears to be quite an erudite audiophile! I'm actually not surprised. Thanks for the link.

I’m at the extreme other end of the spectrum, with a great value Chinese DAC (Gustard), a fantastic 600$ active crossover (Sublime Acoustic), "gadget" priced low power Chinese class D amps (those cost the price of a meal in a decent restaurant), a great vintage preamp (with too much gain for my system and soon to be replaced with a DIY Pass B1), DIY fully horn loaded speakers (probably around 2000$ global investment as I bought the bass horns ready made second hand), AliExpress cables, Russian capacitors, second hand JMLab subwoofers...

BUT I’ve spent 20 years putting the system together and fine-tuning it.

Are those cheap components as good as high end components? No, of course they aren’t. It would be completely foolish to expect them to be.

Does it feel like I’m listening to a high end system when I sit in the sweet spot and play my favorite records? To my ears, yes, and I do have friends with proper high end stuff that I listen to regularly (and conversely, they listen to my system) and visit hi-fi shows as much as I can, and I don’t feel too frustrated. it’s not only how much you spend, it’s what you make of it, and I’m sure a poorly assembled system of very expensive elements could probably sound much worse than what I own.

While I do envy the ABILITY that some have to purchase the best electronics, I no longer barf in front of that forever unattainable gear.


I must have watched the Ron Carter special at the same time you did.  An excellent presentation and it filled in some gaps for me.  It also prompted me to pull out a number of my CDs and LPs featuring Ron Carter and enjoy them all over again. I then found a few other recordings via streaming including what is now one of my favorites—-“Chemistry” with Houston Person. 

As far as Ron’s stereo goes, I was a little surprised that he seems to use CDs almost exclusively but I was more than a little surprised he was playing them on a boom box instead of through the nice looking speakers shown in the video.  I later found out they are Tetra 606 speakers which sold in the $30K range.  Not too shabby!  I’ve never heard the Tetras but I bet Ron’s bass sounds great on them.

"How many people have actually experienced listening to a $40,000 amplifier” 

I am listening music, not the amp. Amp is just a one piece of sound setup I have selected for my home. my current amp cost  $10k and it is driving pair of $4k speakers. max power I typically use is 10W, amp rated 100W. amp was matched together with speakers, speakers' position, cables, for best time response, decent FR, and to minimize distortions. amp has damping factor of 800, and power BW of 5Hz-300000Hz. 

I am doubt $40k amp has higher value other than prestige, expensive look etc., please provide me model # to check. 

True Class A amplifiers require large power supplies, huge heat sinks, have many output devices, consume lots of electricity, and generate a lot of heat. They’re expensive to build. My Colosseum has 48 Sanken bipolar transistors and can generate 160w at 8ohms and 1250w at 1 ohm. It’s all Class A. There can be no crossover distortion because the transistors never turn off. I think the sound is glorious and that there is no substitute for Class A amplification.