That new product does not make your previous purchase obsolete or inadequate. The obsessive nature of sponsor/vendor disciples drives the herd and there are a lot of people wanting to be told how to spend their money so that they can be viewed as elite. It's more of a social status to buy Fad of the Moment product that may or not bring better sound. I initially got caught up in the hype, only to be stuck with a product that can't be given away. I've learned it's worth the effort to experience before spending for long term value. That may mean taking a hit on restocking and shipping fees or attending meets/shows. Another way is purchasing used to pay less for the experience. At least read meet impressions and gather a good network of members that have the same taste in music who have heard or cycled the piece in question. If there aren't a lot of comments pertaining to a piece, chances are it's not made an impression.
Truly better gear has given me more satisfaction and a broader acceptance of genre. What used to be a wall of sound or lacked the passion now can be better conveyed. Said better gear does not have to be the most expensive. Price does not equate to sound improvement. (see item two)
Edited by Happy Camper - 10/14/13 at 9:18am