In my old days of IT project management, the above statement “Good-Cheap-Fast: You can pick any two” was in every project manager’s rule book. We used them to combat unrealistic expectations; to push back projects and to sometimes, educate users.
In our hi-fi world of products and services, especially to most customers where quality matters most, “Cheap” usually would do you no Good. In the commercial world where all products and services are created, targeted for a certain market segment and at a price point, there is a reason behind its asking price.
In the April issue of Audio Art Chinese magazine 音響論壇, the editor quoted the following which makes a great read:
“There is hardly anything in the world that someone cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price alone are that person’s lawful prey. It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money – that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot – it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better” ~ John Ruskin
John Ruskin also wrote “Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of intelligent effort”. So, something intended and by design has its price. But knowing you have paid for it, you can relax, put your feet up, enjoy the music, drink in the pleasures and knowing someone (reputable dealer) is behind you should you need to call upon.