How much would you be willing to pay for a good sounding complete stereo system at the dealer?

In some areas, prices in hi-fi have been skyrocketing in recent years.

 The well-known argument remains: "quality is expensive". But how much should – in fact can – manufacturers charge for this quality? And how far are we, the consumers, willing to go? In our survey of the week we wanted to find out more about this topic and have published the answers and comments of the subscribers of our STEREO Magazine Newsletter here.

  • Well, I’m up beyond six figures now
  • My system retail new would cost in the $50,000 plus range. However, I seldom if ever buy anything new. You can buy one or two generations old equipment used from an audiophile, who treats it with the utmost respect, for about 50 percent off. If you buy quality built pieces of high end, they last and perform great.
  • My current system is worth more than 20,000€ so I believe any worthwhile upgrades would mean that I would spend at least this amount again.
  • You get what you pay for!
  • A first-class CD+Amp+Speaker composite system can be sold for around 1,500€. I have worked as an audio repairman for 41 years, you can make a CD NOS, which does not produce temporary errors and better sound, with an output without memory distortion for less than 500€, an amplifier with about 25W per channel, no memory distortion, no feedback, which again produces temporary errors, and with some system that eliminates crossover distortion, such as class XD, also for less than 500€, And some two-way speakers with around 90dB, with a bass that is almost a full-range supported by a tweeter that crosses high, over 7-10KHz, which would preserve the critical midrange, with a cabinet that works more in favour of the speaker than by eliminating the rear radiation, something similar to Kiso, also for less than 500€. Total: less than 1,500€, only some brands need to think more about sound than marketing.
  • Might spend a bit more if I didn't have to buy it all at one time.
  • In reality however, with my pensioners income it would significantly lower
  • What is "good sounding"? 3000e system can sound good. 30.000e system is good too. Someone can hear the difference, the other one can't. That is the one of the many problems. The other major problem is growing numbers of welthy people in China. Growing demand results in higher prices. No matter how good the product is, when there is no buyers, price can't be high.
  • But absolutely not 100,000$
  • I already spent more than 20K...
    It's my hobby, and I don't buy motorcycles, sportcars or go skiing.
  • Careful matching and placing including room acoustics should be fine!
  • I bought a Linn sondek in 1985
  • I cannot afford to buy one today.The inflated hi fi prices are due to rich far eastern customers.
  • For $3300 on the "used" market I believe much better results are possible.
  • I have just retired and for the first time in my life have had any spare cash. I have spent over £50,000 and don't regret a penny of it.
  • What is "good sounding" to one will likely be mediocre to another. And what constitutes a "complete" system.
    A budget dac/preamp w/ small powered 2 ways OR mono amps, a prepro, phono stage, dac, 3 or 4 way floor standers and a sub.?
    Majority of audiophiles would agree a complete and quality system would be closer to the latter with costs beginning around $20K
  • $$$$ = Dimishing returns for old ears, unfortunately.
  • I choose the amount above because I am a serious listener of high end audio systems.
  • This conclusion is based on the value of my system as it stands. However, this has been assembled lovingly over decades and mostly by buying top quality used gear. I'm not sure that I would actually pay this much at one time for new gear.
  • 1. Active speakerset : 15.000
    2. Pre amp/ dac : 5000- 10000
    Music feed : stream
  • but like anything u buy..the more money u make the more u spend..
  • A High End system doesn´t have to take ten thousands of Dollars, some horn speakers and a tube amp with a proper turntable and some cables can do the job for much less
  • That would be max, and new equipment but I’d be temped to go used/vintage or a combo of new/used for less $$
  • I dont think typically people will spend this amount of money in a single purchase, but over time - but yes I would consider spending a large sum of money on a complete system
  • There must me very good sounding components, amplifiers, sources, loudspeakers for normal prices so as every one could listen in a very good sound and feeling if he wants to .
  • The amount to be understood: Turntable or CD Player + Amplifier + Loudspeakers



STEREO Magazine Issue #25

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