Why do folks spend more on electronics than on speakers?

Hello, just curious on this subject. I have seen threads where folks ask for advice on how to allocate their budget and this topic comes up. I also see systems posted on various forums where folks have $10K-$20K in gear driving $2K-$5K in speakers and wonder why. I have traditionally been a speakers first person as that is where I have noticed the greatest differences. For those that allocate more on gear vs speakers what are your reasons? No judgement, I am just interested in hearing another point of view.


@jpan, I should have clarified. In my original post when I say electronics I meant preamp and power amp or integrated as this is the forum for those things. I should have been more clear. I totally get if one added up source, pre/power, cables, etc it’s not too crazy that they could rival or exceed speakers in cost. Espeically if one is using vinyl as the main media.

I guess what I was thinking is when I see a McIntosh stack driving something like a pair Q Acoustics 3050i or Kef R7s. No disrespect to these speakers.

I rather know that I'm giving my speakers best chance to shine and they can show me what they are truly capable of, then have good speakers and feed them crap.

Some believe source matters most (Linn), others say it’s the speakers where the money should be spent. I spent the most on my speakers, about $5500 (also own 2 other pairs @ $449 & $899, both sound terrific for the price), next came the integrated amps, from $1699 to $3250 (I own 3), my turntables cost from $999 to $2100 (I own 5). Cd transport $1299, Sacd player $900, dac $1200. I won’t mention brands to bore anyone.

After fifty years, in retrospect. One of my first and best sounding sets of speakers were Acoustat 2 + 2… loved them in the showroom. Brought them home… my system couldn’t even remotely power these things to sound good. So I brought home a 75 pound Yamaha behemoth amp… maxed the needles … could not power them. So I got rid of them and bought a brand new Threshold s500… took out a loan… $18,500 in today’s dollars. Then I couldn’t afford the speakers.

After that, speakers first, then optimize the electronics to support them. For a decade or so my speakers were down to 18% the total value when I had ribbon speakers (including subwoofers). But overall it has hit at 30% and the most expensive piece. They set the capability… I can’t imagine having a bunch of electronics and swapping speakers to get the right sound. Besides the technology of the boxes changes much faster.. so a set of speakers tend to stay in my system longer.


I now have Sonus Faber Amati Traditional and can’t image upgrading for at least ten years.