I think there is great sound to be had from both DIY and commercial products. Much depends on your skill level, budget, and time. If you are skilled enough to turn a pile of transistors, tubes, resistors, and capacitors, into an amplifier that sounds great, then you can save a pile of money and still get great sound. If you are not as skilled as the designers at the top amp companies, then you will not get sound that is as good as theirs. Few people are that skilled. But, some are. The same can be said for any category of audio component. Having said that, there are some DIY'ers who are happy to achieve what they can with their skill level, even knowing that it may not be up to the best of the best. It is part of their learning process that will be undertaken many more times during their lives. It is the process and the progress that gives them just as much satisfaction as the end result. It could be in the same classification as "ugrading" to a commercial products user. Many buy an entry level product knowing that it's not the best, but plan to step-up down the road. Eventually they hope to get to the top. Some can and some cannot. So, it is simply two different paths toward the same end. Satisfaction and enjoyment may be achieved on both roads. Personally, I make some things and buy the ones I cannot make well. I find this combination to be very rewarding.