Component Pecking Order

In recent discussions with audiophile friends, the topic of "component pecking order" has surfaced. Meaning: if you were forced to part with one of your components, which one would be the first to go? (You cannot replace it with the same item).
Mine goes something like this (Most valuable first):
1.Lector CDP-7T($3200). Remarkable piece. Simply not replaceable anywhere near this price point. Extremely difficult to obtain at this time.
2.VSA VR-4JR($3995). These speakers deliver the characteristics I wanted in a speaker; outstanding bass, and "holographic" imaging and clarity between the speakers.
I have not heard the Hyperions...
3.BAT VK-300Xse Integrated Amp ($5500). This component fits extremely well in my mix. The bass management is outstanding, and with good recordings, you can approach SET warmth. As a former 300B owner, I found the trade-off to be worth the loss of "warmth", for better dynamics and bass management. This would be my least valuable piece, simply because there are so many options out there in amplification for $6K, that I would have to believe the piece could be equalled or bettered.

I'm hoping my components have a long and happy marriage...
(3 audiophile years is close to an eternity!)

Check out the latest issue of TAS. They have a roundtable discussion on exactly that. It is entertaining to read.
Mine goes something like this (Most valuable first):

1. My Apogee Duetta Signatures: Why, because they simply stomp butt when campared to almost any speaker I give a listen to. Replacement would be very costly with minimal gain at any price.

Everything else: Subject to change at anytime..and does from time to time.

Your 300Bs perhaps would not have worked very well with the 4JRs; so maybe the point is moot. I'd love to hear the Lector CDP-7T.

My system is very nicely balanced at the moment and I find it hard to answer this question.

Possibly I'd consider replacing my Ric Shultz modified Sony XA777ES with the new Meitner combination, though that's a serious financial step.

I have vaguely thought of replacing my Super Eclipses with the Coincident Total Victory, though they may be too much speaker for the apartment. Again, a big outlay to go there.

The Laurel IIx Ultimate Upgrade SETs (one of the last made and built by Ron W.) and the BAT VK-50SE stay, but I should get the BAT upgraded to the 51SE.


The need for a more powerful amp to accompany the 4JRs led to my system overhaul. I was running a Cary 300 SEI with my VR-2s. That was a sweet combination for the money.

I was also using the Sony XA-777ES for SACD, and an Electrocompaniet ECD-1 as my redbook DAC. Let's just say these components were smoked like a Pall Mall in the mouth of John Mellencamp (too Robert Blake-y), by the Lector.
The redbook playback of the Lector is better than the SACD of the Sony XA-777ES. JT's "Hourglass" was the only SACD in my collection of over thirty titles that could even remotely compare.

Good system balancing is greater than superior individual components...