Re: Price vs. Performance
OK, to continue... The SL65 is AMAZINGLY HEAVY and will never even in it's most tricked out state handle close to the current Ferrari's. As for the Lambo's, a good buddy has a 2004.5 Merc, unbeleivable performance, but I realized after he bought it he didn't, in my mind, have the funds to truly own that car. To me, you must be able to pay someone to flatbed it to the track of your choice, where no insurance will cover you, and IF you put it into a wall and crack the tub, get out and say 'Oh well' and move on. Until I have that kind of money I doubt I'd go the Lambo route. The R8 is OK, but wait for next year when the Gallardo motor comes out in it. As for me, I'll keep my 2002 CLK 55 Cab for now.
For speakers, I too heard the WP 8's in several rooms @ HE2007, though a great speaker, I really only adored them in the Lamm room... Now the Nagra Verity room was exceptional though the motor noise of the Nagra CD player opening and closing was pathetic but the sound truly rivaled the best analog rigs I've heard. If you want to go for the cheap, the DCM room was showing a system of their speakers and Jolida tube anp and CD player that for the sub $3K price complete was truly the bargain leader of the show. While a little soft in the bass and not the best in resolution, they offered smooth highs and rich mids for less than the cost of some interconnects!!
I love my high end gear, and likely will ever downgrade my main rig any time soon (upgrades....always!) but I find the less expensive gear to be narrowing the gap in performance.