Why are equipment racks so expensive?

I periodically look through the racks in the sales section and I cannot get over just how darn pricey those things are.  I don't get it.  

I mean I see racks that cost 1, 2 or even 3K.  Really?

I've currently got two Ikea end tables stacked (not the Lack but some other ones) and they work rather well but sometimes I look just to see what's available.  I see the prices.  Then I'm back to being happy with what I've got.

So...why the prices?
Reading through this thread has certainly opened my eyes. Now that I think about it, we took an old lawnmower motor, ran an old fan belt to an axle, we were able to drive all around the neighborhood. Why then does a Porsche Turbo cost $200k? 
@ozzy62 , lay instinct is rubbish. How the f do you think an F22 would fly if electronics were sensitive to vibration. A targeting computer has a lot more to do than your silly DAC. The Russians were using tube electronics in their airplanes up to the early 70's. Worked just fine. You guys are hysterical. Knock yourselves out.
A few months ago I made a rack inspired by this thread: 


I'm really happy with results. It's as solid as a tank -- weighing more than a 100 lbs. I like the rustic and retro look very much, but it wasn't as easy to build as I thought it would be. Drilling precise holes through thick butcher block requires tools and wood skills. The cost of materials was around $500. The shelves are 1.5-inch thick and the legs are 3/4-inch plumbing pipe. You can see it in my system: https://systems.audiogon.com/systems/2056

After building this, it made me realize how much time and effort goes into building high quality furniture. 
The notion that IKEA mass-produced cheap offerings measure up to a quality build audio rack is pure folly. Assuming that you have a high-end Hi-Fi system worthy of high-end accessories, (… low-fi and mid-fi systems … not so much a difference in my experiences )

My current experience:

(1) HARBETH recommends their bespoke select speaker stands as preferred recommendations. (They do not make their own stands) .
Instead of buying their professed $$$$ marked-up faves, I had them custom cloned locally by a professional woodworking pro at a fraction of the price . (E.G.: their brand name made-in-Germany MSRP unit before duties and taxes: $1.500. ME: ~ $550 taxes all-included )

(2) A quality build hardwood audio rack from their recommended high-end UK brand was ~ $3,500 before duties and taxes. I had the same woodworker build a custom bespoke AND upgraded all-walnut unit with further upgraded features for $1,100 all-in taxes included,


- The recommended speaker stands DID improve the audio performance over my all-steel (and expensive..) steel speaker stands …they do work.

- The recommended audio rack with a bespoke isolation shelf DID improve the audio performance over my all-steel audio rack … they do work.

- In the interim I actually test-drove the uber-cheap IKEA catalogue units that were regrettably a POS in noticeable audio performance degradation comparatively with my high-end system models - full stop.


(1) You only get exactly what you get for in this crazy hobby … BUT …and its a BIG “BUT” … you can do your homework to make it cost effective without the inflated marketing humbug and nutso prices.

(2) Advertising and aggressive marketing works for the uninitiated. Roll up your sleeves and do your homework ,

“Nobody ever lost a dollar by underestimating the taste of the American public.”
― P.T. Barnum

“… And in what business is there not humbug? “There’s cheating in all trades but ours,” is the prompt reply from the boot-maker with his brown paper soles, the grocer with his floury sugar and chicoried coffee, the butcher with his mysterious sausages and queer veal, the dry goods man with his “damaged goods wet at the great fire” and his “selling at a ruinous loss,” the stock-broker with his brazen assurance that your company is bankrupt and your stock not worth a cent (if he wants to buy it,) the horse jockey with his black arts and spavined brutes, the milkman with his tin aquaria, the land agent with his nice new maps and beautiful descriptions of distant scenery, the newspaper man with his “immense circulation,” the publisher with his “Great American Novel,” the city auctioneer with his “Pictures by the Old Masters”—all and every one protest each his own innocence, and warn you against the deceits of the rest. My inexperienced friend, take it for granted that they all tell the truth—about each other! and then transact your business to the best of your ability on your own judgment.”
― P.T. Barnum, The Humbugs of the World: An Account of Humbugs, Delusions, Impositions, Quackeries, Deceits and Deceivers Generally, in All Ages

For the naysayers and the believers, …

”… There are three sides to every story: your side, my side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each differently ...”

― Robert Evans

lalitk - I didn't realize my post was a rant.  Good to know.

mingles - That's a great looking rack!

I'm not willing to A/B an audio rack to see if I can hear any difference in the sound between different rack systems.  I figure as long as it's solid, has spikes and/or antivibration devices, it should work for me just fine.  IMO, Ikea furniture can work extremely well.   

I don't do well with A/B comparisons normally because while I do feel I can hear subtle differences between some components, my ears adjust to the new sound within minutes and whatever I'm listening through sounds good.  My auditory memory sucks compared to golden eared folks.

Or just maybe my gear quality is all pretty decent and the differences in sound are subtle at best.  After all, I'm not comparing a lawnmower to a Porsche.  

Whenever I do get into a new rack, I'll probably just DIY it as I need five shelves and the top as to be a certain height.  I do not want to bend over or down in order to play records.  

Cheers, all.  And stay safe.