Are You Satisfied?

Consider this a poll. How many of you are actually happy with their existing system and have no plans on upgrading? This thread seems to go "against the grain" of most of the threads regarding upgrading, future upgrades, plans to upgrade, another upgrade, etc.

Are there any of you out there who have actually stopped the upgrading and now just spend their time listening? Not that I feel that upgrading isn't a fun part of the hobby. But, I think it's more a question of, have you finally reached a point where you see no reason to upgrade.

I recently upgraded my complete 2 channel system. This is the first time I have upgraded since about 1985. It took about six months of reading, evaluating and ultimately listening, to approximately a dozen seperate pieces of equipment before making my final purchase.

I could not be any happier. Based on my past performance, I will probably own this equipment for another 15 or so years.

Are there others of you out there that are satisfied enough with you system that you see no reason to upgrade or am I to be considered the "black sheep" or not the "norm"?
My latest upgrade was getting a STAX SRM1/SR5 headphone combination and now I was just thinking to downgrade speakers and amps but it's been already too much DIY effort took place towards the amps to modify; so I'll just simply stay where I am. Not realy I can hold-on listening in headphones for three hours -- gotta switch to speakers and amp that arn't bad at all but not as good as STAX for sure.

I did also many upgrades for instance from re-issues to original versions: Let it even sound worse than some cool re-issues but I'm more as a collector in that case than an audiophile; from bad condition vinyls to a good condition vinyls(why bother cleansing or getting from $hit gold with all the expencive chemical tweaks?); sold one bundle of CDs to change for another bundle and so-on and so-fourth.

BTW, I spotted on some labels a good jump towards quality on red-book CDs within the past couple of years and some of them realy can argue with vinyls and SACDs. Some of the small new labels(yeah underground ones that I ussually hang on to) print out excellent pressings and my mostly analogue music collection getting some digital increase as well.
I think you hit on the real limiting factor in this hobby - time. I have a nice set up, and it sounds pretty good, but it's getting harder and harder to spend time with it.

First problem is competing activities such as work, kids, and church. The second problem is that what time I have left is fragmented.

To have a good listening session I need a minimum of 3 contiguous hours. That gives the amps time to come up to operating temperature (can't afford to run them 24x7), and allows for at least a couple of albums before quitting. It's not worth firing up the system for less than this.

On a weekend I might get 6 or more free hours, but they are rarely contiguous or even close to contiguous.

Logistically the best time to listen is late at night after the kids go to bed, but by then I'm exhausted. There's nothing worse than to have the system sounding great, but to find yourself picking up a CD case and looking to see when it's going to be over so you can go to bed.

So who's got the magic tweak for our schedules?
I don't think that upgrading and the enjoyment of music are necessarily mutually exclusive. While happy to listen to my system as is, I can always think of ways it might be improved. Then again, I don't lose sleep or satisfaction from listening to music while pining for upgrades. When one cannot enjoy what they have presently based on the notion of what could be, that is a sad situation.
I'm sticking with what I have for the time being. I always keep my gear for a pretty long time. I make some small upgrades and tweaks here and there, but I usually stay with my gear for several years.
The problem is this: Once you have reached a point
where you think your system sounds really, really good,
but you upgrade one of your components and find that
it sounds even better -- and in ways that you couldn't
exactly imagine, you are hooked. It becomes hard to
"stand pat." You find yourself wondering what else is
out there that will turn that trick again. It has happened
to me a couple of times. I am really happy with my system now, but I am waiting for the Meitner EMM Labs
Dac6, which I expect will take my system to yet another
level. After that, I may tinker with some cable, but I
believe I will be done for the time being. So, I am happy
with my system now. If I had to live with my system the
way it is right now, I could be very happy. I spend quite
a bit of time listening. Favorite time is after everyone has gone to bed. The house is absolutely quiet, electricity improves, and music just sounds better at
that time.
Yep, very satisfied. There are always a number of changes I'd like to try, but nothing that I need to do. I'm usually experimenting with various tweaks, and am getting reading to build some wall panels and bass traps, but the basic system sounds great.
Yes, I'm satisfied and plan on keeping my components for a while. I'm tired of spending money and selling gear and frankly it sounds pretty darn good. My only wishes are an Electrocompaniet SACD player and a CD player for my headphone system that's great on both SACD and redbook (but my Marantz SA-14 is pretty good). My only concern is that my main system is tubed and we have kids on the way in the near future. I'm going to keep the tubed components, but if there are any problems I'll have to do something else. But to summarize, yes, I'm content, and I'm really enjoying some good music these days -- jazz, classical, and bluegrass/flatpicking. : )
finally got my system where there is really very little to change on the digital end and the analog sounds good enough...then comes the twins and i'm singing the same blues as ghostrider45
It has been a long journey but I am happy as a clam and feel no need to upgrade anything. Yes, I know, my system is fairly costly, but I agree with 4yanx that upgrading and musical enjoyment are not mutually exclusive. I can still (and often do) enjoy my music immensely through my car system, my meager office system or my portable mini-disc player with a pair of ear buds.
Buscis; Yes I am very satisfied. There's the "obsession thing" too-- at least in my case. I recently even down graded a bit (cost and size of amp(s)and my system is sounding excellent, and I have no plans to fiddle with it.

I've been getting heavily invilved w/ digital photography (my latest and maybe finest obsession), and after a long day of dealing w/ computers, printers, difficult software, and other complex technology, just kicking back and listening to some fine tunes is really enjoyable I'm finding. And in some ways, I'm finding music even more enjoyable. Cheers. Craig
Yes, I'm satisfied and I'm also sure that I will continue to
evolve the system into the future. This is a great pastime
of beauty and wonder!
Yes, I am quite satisfied. I have no plans to ever upgrade my speakers, amp, preamp, sources, and most of my cabling. I am happy with all of it.

I still need to address power issues, room acoustics, isolation platforms, footers etc. So I am not done spending money by any means, but the main components are firmly entrenched and not going anywhere.

I can definitely see digital source equipment improving over the years, so I won't rule out an upgrade there at some point.

I will also continue to tweak, probably forever, who knows for sure?
well its been at least 10 years and 4 major systems i think and hope i am finally satisfied with my system audio
note products i just added to my system has let me listen to the music no longer wondering if i need something better
of course @ their price range if i was not satisfied i would have considered getting out of the hobby! happy listening.
I can't get no satisfaction, but I've tried and tried.

Actually, I love the sound of my system, and was considering upgrading the speakers...


The funding for the two statewide programs I direct has been cut, as of July 1. AND there are very few decent jobs out there. So I'll be on unemployment for the first time in my life. This situation isn't conducive to this hobby. PLUS my wife of 30 years and I have split. She's a veterinarian. So I've gone from riches to rags in very short time.

So to answer your question; yes I am very satisfied with my system, and have no plans to upgrade in the near future.

Someone out there have a job opportunity for me?
After reading the responses so far, I think I'm in a different category in that I'm really just getting started in building my "dream" system. It's comforting to hear that people actually get to a point of contentment, for myself I constantly wrestle with the "what ifs". But it is enjoyable to try and improve what you have and even better is that moment when you acheive the desired effect. I'll wager that most members of this site have many hobbies that consume equal time and resources, I believe it is a character or personality trait. Many friends don't understand the cost required in this particular hobby, but you can't take it with you right? In the mean time I will happily thumb through the magazines and sites dreaming of my next...
I'm fairly new to audio but have put together a small system for my home office that has exceeded the quality of the listening room. The only upgrade I wish I could arrange is a new (young) pair of ears. I'm 54 and have some hearing loss. I guess I don't know what I'm missing.
It so nice to read that folks with the six figure
systems are satisfied.

I wonder if they're now making an equal investment in LPs, CDs,SACDs...etc.
Hell no. Way I see it, the prusuit of perfection in anything is a life-long endevour. Now anyone who fails to relish and enjoy each any every step along the way is missing the point, but, satisfied? I'll be satisfied only if, the day they put me in the ground, I never gave up striving for more from the things I care about -- and mayby not even then ;) (Ok, maybe a little more strident and absolutist than necessary, but I stand by the sentiment, however inartfully espressed). Let's try again, I guess I'll either remain curious, involved and eager to try new things or indifferent (aka, obsessed with something else). Though I'll derive satisfaction from either, I wouldn't call either "satisfaction."
This is difficult to answer since I am very happy with my system now, but I still plan to upgrade.
I don't think I have anything right now that is not GOOD, but all of it could be better. I don't have any pressing urge to replace any particular piece but I still scan the ads.
Perfection in this hobby is not obtainable. The most important componant in musical satisfaction is still the imagination. How does one upgrade their brain???
Since people are reading and playing here, they're probably already too far gone for that upgrade. It's a slippery slope we climb with that 150lb amp on our backs!
If you have tubes in your system, can you ever be satisfied? First off, they start wearing out immediately and you always have to worry about when do they need replacing. Secondly, there are so many different flavors of NOS tubes, you can never be sure that you have the right ones. I'd be completely satisfied with my main system if I weren't using a tube preamp. I need to keep it there because it has a headphone jack, but maybe I'd be better off with a solid state and a separate headphone amp.

Other than that, though, speakers, amp and cdp are staying there until they stop working.
Paul, you make an important point. When considering my last upgrade, I was seriously considering tubes. There really is nothing quite like that sound. But you're right. With tubes, you must allocate time and funds for maintaining the "tube sound". I was fortunate to find an amp that had an "SET like" sound with the dependability of solid state.

But, it's still not tubes.
Paul, I think you hit a sizable portion of my own mania right on the head. I own two tubed preamps and a tubed CD player and, although I love the sound, I always seem to be second guessing them one way or another. I switched out the CD player and just bought a solid state preamp. Although I expect to keep at least one of the tubed pre's, if the solid state can keep up I expect it will find a more permanent place in the system. Satisfaction may escape me, but the interminable need to fuss with things that is only exasturbated by running tubes is something I could definitely live without.
After 12 years and 4 major systems i can finally sit back listen to music not wondering if something needs to be improved upon just added audio note dac 3.1x balanced and audio note M6 pre-amp and can honestly say i am satisfied not to say that @ audionotes MSRP i better be. happy listening