Is surge protection needed?

I recently initiated a thread on wall receptacles. Once the receptacle is chosen is there a need for surge protection. Many audiophiles have spent huge $$ on systems. I live in upstate N.Y. where in the spring we can get some serious lightning storms. If one is needed would it degrade the sound and defeat the purpose of spending money on the receptacle. Might sound like a crazy question, but I've seen transformers get hit with lightning around here. Maybe the answer is to keep on plugging and unplugging? Any insight?
Unplug is the only thing that really works, and make sure you are disconnected from any ground wire attached to your system. I used to think that having a switch off would block a lightning spike, but I have learned that it jumps right over any open switch contacts, lights up and even blows out light bulbs. I am lucky that my audio system has never been hit.
YES it is!
A number of good power conditioners are also surge protectors. A surge protection that would, in most cases, improve the performance of a system would be PS Audio high current Ultimate outlet.