why do people feel the need to buy expensive cable

I have tried expensive cables and one's moderately priced. I would say there were some differences but I can't actually say the expensive cables were better. IMHO I believe a lot of people buy expensive cables because they don't actual trust their ears and are afraid of making a mistake. They figure the expensive cables are better for the fact they cost more. If you have a difference of opinion or share the same thoughts, I would like to hear about it.

Just curious, what cables have you had for 20 years and what are you thinking about changing to?
Geoff - The word "expensive" is relative to the rest of the system, the speakers/amp/preamp/sources. $10k on cables is not expensive if the rest of the system is worth $100k. However if the rest of the system is worth $12k, then $10k on cables is very expensive and would most likely not be the most efficient money spent in terms of improved sound quality per dollar.

In my system, I think its expensive and inefficient to spend $5k total on cables, which is where I'd be if I spend $1k on a single set of interconnects. I can get more SQ improvement for the same money elsewhere. But that's of course for my system, thus the need to be open-minded about different levels of cables, results will vary for different people. I also have a dedicated power line for example, that might change things dramatically in terms of how cables respond.
...and had nothing of value to say, nothing. Much like half of the other responses.

So what if you took a cable apart and think it is made from wire you can get at a hardware store? Not all cable companies are doing that, many create their own alloys, they use exotic versions of oxygen free copper, they try annealing and baking in ovens at different temperatures and times, many are cryo treating cables. They are experimenting on systems that are obviously allowing them to hear what guys with DIY wire will NEVER, ever hear in their systems.

So what if you "listened" to an expensive cable and couldn't hear any difference.

When someone has a question about expensive cable, those who can't hear the difference have nothing to add to the conversation that should mean anything to the person who has the questions.

Who should you "trust" or "believe", the audiophiles who have figured out how to get a system that is detailed enough to hear the differences in any cables, interconnects, or power cords, or the nimrods that can't hear the difference between anything?

Notice a common denominator among those who think it's ludicrous to spend any serious money on cable? They all have DIY cable and stock power cords.
Geof just likes to tease and agitate the audiophiles. Seems to be a hobby. His brand is his way of making it official. Some would call it trolling. I wouldn't waste too much time having a serious discussion with him. 👹
Thread started with a worthless premise and everything that followed was of little value. Verdict as usual, inconclusive. So what else is new?
Happens every time we "discuss" cables and I use that term loosely.