What is the least amount you have spent on an audio component that produced music that made you happy?

Wes Phillips's picture
Money can't always buy love, but it is often thought it can buy audio happiness. Or can it? What is the least amount you have spent on an audio component that produced music that made you happy?
What is the least amount you have spent on an audio component that produced music that made you happy?
Here it is
72% (140 votes)
I have no idea
28% (55 votes)
Total votes: 195
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Bob's picture

An original, used Oracle Delphi turntable with arm and cartridge for $800, back in 1997. The only items I bought for less were my original system in high school, consisting of an Akai receiver and Fisher speakers for $325 in 1981. I bought them with money earned scrubbing pots at a local restaurant. All three were perfect at the time and were enjoyed for many years. It seemed like a fortune at the time. Today, my speaker cable costs more than I ever imagined spending on an entire system. How times have changed!

Scott Atkinson's picture

A $40 Tripath-based amp purchased off e.Bay. It's marked "Sure Electronics," and the unit can still be found (by way of an e.Bay store) under that name, though the price is up to $54. Anyway, a clear, clean amp that I can listen to by the hour.

John Blackwater's picture

Free—read the manual closely for hidden extras like Dolby Pro Logic ON switch. Result: loads of old CDs have surround-sound encoded in the analog signal and I am having hours of fun uncovering new versions of music I thought I knew already in my collection.

Austin Kuipers's picture

A buyout on Sonus Faber 5" woofers, planar tweeters, a set of small birch ply cabs, and a rane active crossover beat out my B&Ws x10. $300 vs $4k? CheapestT audio thrill ever was making speakers out of laundry detergent dispensers and Aiwa drivers when I was 12. I wired it and placed the drivers so as to produce a truly awesome soundstage. Accurate? No. Soundstage to rival nice coaxials? Yes.

Jimmy's picture

I purchased a 12-band Technics graphic equalizer in 1983 for $89. It made a world of difference in sound quality.

JWS's picture

The $99 I spent on my NuForce uDAC is the best hundred bucks I've ever spent on audio gear. The uDAC, combined with lossless files opened a whole new world to me.

Dan Wilson's picture

A nice pair of Dynaco A-25 speakers at a flea market for $5.

James's picture

The deluxe Monoprice.com Toslink cable is a wonderful buy. I use it from an Airport Express to my DAC and it works great and looks amazing.

Mark Evans's picture

I spent $475 on a used Genesis Digital Lens in mint condition. Best thing I ever purchased and the cheapest.

tzed's picture

In high school, I bought a hand-me-down AR turntable that came with an ancient Shure cartridge. I replaced it with a $40 Grado F-series and got one step closer to nirvana.

Jeff's picture

Koss Pro35A headphones. They were less than $20 on sale. Their sound is accurate and well-balanced. Great for portable use.

Sergio M.  De Iudicibus's picture

Restored my grandparents' 1930s radio. Tube amplified.

Jayne Lee Wilson, Liverpool UK's picture

Toss-up between Cambridge DacMagic (£227) and the Stereolab XV-Ultra coax digital cable (£350ish for 1.5m). I bought the Cambridge to access the Proms webcasts from the MacBook, then discovered the joys of 24/96 downloads. The old Krell 300cd was a little behind even lossless (16/44.1) downloads, so I bought the XV-Ultra to connect it to the DacMagic... wow! A new CD player for under £600! I've got beautiful music coming out of my ears, and the last week of the Proms has the BBC running them at a new rate of 320kbps AAC, which is very listenable indeed, and well ahead of compressed FM. All from a "budget" DAC and a truly remarkable cable upgrade.

HS's picture

I just scored a pair of PSB Alpha B speakers through craigslist. They're absolutely mint and cost only $100! I'd buy a six-pack for Christmas presents if I could find more at that price.

Bubba in SF's picture

Headphones. I bought a pair of Sony MVDR600s for $5 when Video Concepts went out of business. They replaced an ancient pair of Sennheiser HD424s that I paid $25 for. I bought my daughter a pair of Bose earbuds so I could get her Bose noise-canceling full-coverage headphones. Those three headphones cover a span of about 32 years. Now if I could only get a deal on some newer Sennheisers or Grados.

Tom's picture

$28 on a QED Qunex interconnect. Just the tonic my system needed.

Andrew's picture

At work, they were throwing out a Technics SL1200mkII. Still works brilliantly.

Jared Thompson's picture

Free LPs people have given away as they discarded them, sometimes in boxes on corners. Found my original copy of the White Album this way!

Chris from Michigan's picture

$100 Vizio soundbar

Jim's picture

I love my lamp cord(s).

Rob's picture

150 on a used, serviced Quad 405 MK1 power amp, partnered with a £150 used AVI S2000MP preamp. Both bargain basement and both worked very well.

Layne Edwards's picture

$300—Magnepan MG 1.3s.

Ken Buell ...  Cincinnati Oh.'s picture

AR turntable ($78 new) & Stanton 681 cartridge (?—expensive at the time), all Dynaco electronics, and A25 speakers. In 1968—wonderful music!

Carlos Moreno's picture

AR9 speakers. $2500.

Markus Rufer's picture

$399 for the Winsome Labs Mouse amplifier. One of the best values in the hi-fi world.

Thomas Boyd's picture

My used Mcintosh MA6100, just 400 bones.

OvenMaster's picture

Brand-new Ortofon OM 10 Super cartridge. $45.

kit's picture

Denon DL 110. Paid $139 + postage. Sounds wonderful! Better than any MM I have ever heard. In fact, the best cartridge I have owned, although I have paid a lot more before and got a lot less. It will have to do until I can afford that Koetsu!

Mike D, HKG's picture

Grado SR80 headphones

Arthur Tada's picture

Playstation 1001 and modifications. Little bugger sounded like music and the sense of "air" was due to the lack of fuss over it all.

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