I think that is just an enthusiast's curse that we need to try the high end. Then get a realization later the price difference do not commensurate with the 5-10 % different in performance/SQ.
However, it still feels satisfying knowing you experience the TOTL. This is my first custom and maybe the last. I just want to enjoy that last 5-10% SQ custom has to offer against that $300-500 universals.
It's the same cycle all over again I had with the golden age of PC DIYs.
Like many other investment, audio is one that is of diminishing return.... the more you invest the less you get per dollar spent .... nonetheless as audio enthusiast we all want to listen to the best... as long as there is room for possible improvement.... we just got to try it to find out for ourselves. That extra 700-800 is just worth it for that 5-10% improvement.... but most importantly is to buy within your own means.