How to reply to questions about stereo cost?

How much did you pay for that? I could by a car for that. We already have a car.
You could send your kids to college for that much money.
My kids are lazy and stupid. They think they are gonna inherit the money I'm spending on this stereo.
What does your wife say? I can't hear when the stereo is playing.
It's already depreciated. I bought it used.
How did you get your wife to agree? I sold her the video tape of her making out with the cable guy.
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I usually say 'you don't want to know'. to my friends in the business, I don't need to say, and my wife lets me buy anything I want for my systems....
I stopped giving amounts. People just don't get it. I guess most people are just judgemental. The same peoople that look at me like I have two heads when I tell them my cart costs $1,300 are the same ones that spend hundreds of dollars going out to eat and thousands of dollars travelling. I would NEVER do that with my money (I would if I had enough for everything) but, "get it" if other people do. Seems though that, most folks think; "Why would you spend thousands of dollars on a HiFi system when you can just go to Best Buy and get the whole thing for $500?????
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Better on stereo components than oversized plasma TV and cable bill once a month and a million channels that never get watched.
cheaper than that boat, motorcycle, camper, etc. that sits gathering dust in your garage.
Just lie! But make it a suitible whopper to fit the personality of your guest. I usually tell folks its old vintage tubed equipment from the 60's, but some I tell that, believe it or not, it cost more than my 'Rolex". I never actually give someone an real number. I let them fill that in with their imagination. :-)
I really enjoyed this post; it's given me some suitable answers. I usually say something like; "oh gosh I'd really need to look that up to be sure" or for the total system costs something like; "about the same as a little car" That leaves it to their imagination. I've even given costs as a function of weight. How much is that amp worth? "Oh’s about $75/lb". It really doesn't matter which component they ask about, the response and the look is always the same......."Shut up!! You’ve got to be kidding. Are you oh man whatever you're on, I want some too. What does your wife say about this”
I have my power amp sitting on the floor between my speakers and now when people ask what that big ugly thing is on the floor I just tell them it’s an electric furnace that doubles as an amp for my speakers. :)
No one has asked me in years (except my insurance agent). The only time $$$ comes up is when an impressed guest asks me to suggest a system for him/her. Then I ask what they can spend.

"I don't sell black tar heroin on the weekends for my health." (From Viridian)
That's the best one! Thanks.

What's with Americans always asking what everything you own costs? It's so tacky and rude!
I really don't know and have not needed any excueses. I hooked with an 'ENABLER'. Actually that has it's own unique issues.
Tacky? You may have something there!(Black Tar Heroin) ... Rude? I guess that's a matter of opinion ........... it's the American way!
iT'S My stereo or divorce. Oh well, been married to her 45 yrs so I guess my wife has to go!
"as much as a year of your cigarettes", "less than cable that still costs when you're not home to watch it", or everybody's got something",
and rarely "we can see what you're ready to spend when you're seriously looking".
Kal- Funny my insurance agent thought my power amp was an air conditioner sitting on the floor.... Of she only knew that those 16- 6550's were actually for roasting chicken on the weeknds! ....

I can usually always find something that a man at least, spends an inordinate amount of money on, whatever hobby they have, whether it be a 100k boat that they use 3 times a year, 18 old watches, 20k worth of power tools to make an 800 dollar house, etc. So I mention my opinion of his stupidly expensive insane hobby that(dweebs, jocks, motorheads, sex addicts, gamblers, boaters, heroin saleman) seem to find interesting.

When I think that I get to use my hobby 1 to 8 hours a day, it harms nothing but my ears, and how much my other hobby, golf, costs, in time, clubs, lessons, green fees, travel, joining a golf club, monthly fees, etc etc. If I keep the stereo long enough, and buy too many 400 dollar drivers, then the stereo is cheaper :0 not to mention, everytime I listen to a cd, my wife does not get the urge to go to the spa for three hours unlike golf on vacation.
1. Only my wife and my insurance agent know on what I waste my money.

2. The agent is the only one who cares exactly how much.

Reply to how much my stereo costs? Same data I give my wife:


Still she thinks that's too much.
My reply is-
somebody broke into my house and left all this junk!
If I could only figure out how it works?

I tried that once, a long time ago, and the immediate come-back was "Can you get this setup for me, too?"

"I got some great deals on ebay, you'd be amazed the stuff you can find on there. I think I got this for $50 (point to actual planted $50 item, I've gotten so many deals I can't even remember them all."

Works like a charm.
To be honest, I am afraid to even think about what I spent on my system. The thought makes a cringe a bit sometimes so I just avoid thinking about the live blissfully ignorant, spending more and more money into this crazy hobby!

That being said, I try to avoid saying how much I spent not because I am afraid people will think I am nuts but because I do not want to go through the inevitable justification. "How much is your Esoteric better than my $50 Sony cdp?" "Can you really tell the difference"...blah blah blah. Trying to explain the value I place on audio to non-audiophiles is exhausting, fruitless work. Therefore, from my experience, the best reply is "Not much more than what you can get at Best Buy or Circuit City". That response usually ends the discussion.
I try to differentiate between those who clearly express an interest in making a purchase and those who just wat to tell me how stupid I am. Or the people who I owe money to.
Once my wife said "we could have bought a nice piano for that." I reminded her that the stereo would actually have music emanating from it......
My father has maybe $40K in his rig and well over 11,000 recordings.....most ask how much the music cost and dont bother with gear.