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

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

Aaron G's picture

Some Shure E2Cs about six years back for $99. Boy, were they nice on plane rides.

Walter Purdy's picture

NuForce uDAC2. 140 Canadian dollars. Worth several times that to me. I haven't researched their other products, but I certainly intend to.

Eric Shook -- Raleigh, NC's picture

The Grado SR60.

Adam's picture

The first earbuds Koss ever released that had 20Hz-20kHz cost me only $10 back when I was in high school in the late '80s. I suppose their "Plug" earbuds for $15 now are probably a better deal, but my initial experience made me a Koss customer for life.

Dave's picture

A used Onkyo receiver for $22.95 at Salvation Army.

Hi-Fi Jim's picture

Pioneer Elite SX-A6-J. Bought new on clearance for $200, the build quality and sound are indicative of a $1500 product. Love it!

Sigurdur Valur's picture

The Sonic Impact Class T amplifier.

Denny Cote's picture

Bought Radio Shack drivers and caps and built two-way towers. Probably cost me $100, loved them. Designed the cabinets using The Loudspeaker Design Cookbook.

Yoor Naim's picture

Craigslist, baby! B&W 601S3, Yamaha CD deck, & receiver all for $40. Metal speaker stands for free from someone else.

Andrew Edmonds's picture

$150 Audioengine 2 speakers for the bedroom. Great sound.

fritz de with.nl's picture

Copper AC shielding on every AC plug. See my video on youtube. Marantz Reference Legendary System. Cost nothing. Works perfect.

David C.  Snyder's picture

Don't laugh...the Creative E-MU 0404 USB ($150), upgraded via a linear regulated 5V power supply ($20). Driven by MediaMonkey with ASIO drivers on an old XP notebook, this device produces surprisingly good sound for the price.

Michael's picture

$400, modding my SlimDevices Transporter with Burson HD op-amps.

Sherwood's picture

B&W 610i speakers. Great speakers at only $250 a pair—15 years ago.

nosmoking's picture

It's a toss-up. Least is the little Maggie console amp I got for $24.99. 2W of sweetness. Or my two MC30 amps. Got 'em for under $300.

JM's picture

I believe my first audio component was an all-in-one stereo with a turntable and 8-track player (with separate speakers!) purchased for about $5 at a garage sale. I soon got the upgrade bug and stepped up to a larger (and certainly better) garage sale system. I subsequently tore the first one apart in an effort to see how it worked and to put it back together (neither were achieved, but it was fun). I have significantly more invested in my current rig and have stopped taking things apart, but it has always been about getting to the music.

Surja Sutantio's picture

These components have good bang-for-the-buck: Jelco Tonearms, Lyra Delos, Dynavector 20XH, Ayon CD-07, Cary Xciter DAC, LAT international interconnects, IsoTek Optimum power cable, Audience AU24E, and Well Tempered Amadeus GTA.

John's picture

I bought a Behringer UF0202 to digitize my vinyl collection. It was $35 and it works like a champ. It is cheap and doesn't come with all the bells and whistles, but it gets the job done with minimal effort and it comes with software to allow you to edit the music files.

Allan's picture

I bought some surplus woofers for five bucks apiece. I tossed 'em into a fourth-order bandpass box I had bought on sale. They were only eights, but that was some of the best bass I had ever had in the car. Much better than a bandpass usually is. Just got lucky that random parts matched so well. Usually though, I've found cheap things are cheap for a reason, but sometimes...

Robert Deutsch's picture

Used Dynaco PAS-3x preamp and Stereo 70 power amp. $50 each (in the early '70s). Much better sounding than the "all silicon" Eico 3070 integrated amp that they replaced.

James's picture

NAD 4020 tuner. Cost £3.20, a bit grubby, slightly older than I am, so much better than my Denon DAB.

Nick's picture

I paid $250 for a VPI HWjr with an SME arm mount. Put a SME IV on it and have been very happy. Of course, I will upgrade to a better 'table, but it is hard to imagine enjoying vinyl for so little money (leaving aside the cost of the arm).

Peter Lynn's picture

My original pair of Sennheiser 414 headphones. It was so long ago that I don't remember what I paid, but this was the first time that music from something smaller than a speaker sounded good to me.

George Moore's picture

Advent loudspeakers $102/ea in 1973.

rej's picture

Music Hall DAC. $600, give or take a few tens.

Doug Mencoff's picture

Audioquest Sidewinder ICs, which still sound better in my system than any other I've tried at any price.

Gymrome's picture

That's a tough one, but it would be the cryogenic 6922 tubes for my Audible Illusions Mod 3A preamp. Great sound, very quiet, and. they've be in service more than three years and are still going strong, no small task for a tube in my Mod 3A!

Lars S's picture

My speakers, Elac FS137-Jet with the amazing Oscar Heil tweeter.

Jazzfan's picture

1) iPod, 2) SqueezeBox Touch.

Pim's picture

I'm sitting here at work listening to MP3s of '70s music that a mate gave me to make up a play list for a '70s party. Some of the MP3s were recorded from vinyl with scratches and bounces against the turntable clearly audible. The equipment; A laptop and a set of $5 Chinese made crap speakers that were already here. It's made me realize why I'm into audio in the first place; It's the music. And the '70s has produced so much fun stuff that it really doesn't matter how bad the quality is. It actually adds feeling to the experience. I haven't had this much fun since, well, the '70s!