What's your favorite "Audiophalicy"... something people believe that simply isn't the way things work?
For me it's "Soundstage".
There is literally nothing in an amplifier, receiver, player, streamer, dac or speakers that sets up a soundstage. I'm sorry, it just isn't there. The soundstage you hear, that holographic centre channel with the instruments distributed across the speakers in front of you is not generated by the equipment in your listening room. It actually comes from the music mix in the source recording and, as such, it can be highly variable from one recording to the next.
In the recording studio, when mixing down from multi-track masters to either stereo or surround sound, the recording engineer uses a Pan Pot to balance each individual sound across the channels to make it appear to come from some position other than the extreme left or right, front or back. This is actually burned into the final pressing of the music (or movie) and this is what you hear when you play the recording on your home equipment.
If you think one amplifier provides a better "soundstage" than another, or one set of speakers is better at this than another... you are, quite simply, kidding yourself. The variation you are hearing is between the mix of sounds on one pressing and another... and they're pretty much all different.
I personally am a fan of spending money where it is best spent. Ie getting a good value. For that reason, I have no problem with people spending money on nice looking speaker wire. As long as they understand, there is no benefit (unless getting a different gauge) assuming it is good copper wire. One of the many reasons I made the video on how to make your own HiFi speaker wire. Boy did I make some audiophiles mad, lol.
I'm betting you did. I'm a little surprised Monster didn't try to sue you...
Recent incident ... "Can you come and look at my system, I've checked and checked and I can't find anything wrong" ... So I got there and sure enough the speakers were out of phase. But you'd never find it by looking. Audioquest had dutifully put the banana plugs on wrong on one end of one of their $300 10 foot cables. A couple of quick runs of 16-2 extension cord, some banana plugs and normalcy was restored at a cost of less than $15.00. (Audioquest refund pending)
How do you spot that easily? Two big hints... First, lack of bass due to cancellation and second the monophonic information that forms the stereo image sounds like two separate sounds in both speakers. The quick test is to flip the plugs on one of the speakers and see if the normal stereo image is restored.