I forgot to mention my favorite Behringer product, the Behringer MIC2200 Ultragain Pro also known as the "fake tube" preamp. All the glow of tube electronics but none of the warmth.
In a similar vein, I really enjoyed this little article about an expensively packaged
preamp that was essentially functioning on a few $3 chips inside:
Packaging can certainly be deceiving. Its clear with software, but I wonder how much high-end hardware is also just a handsome case !
And thanks, Loren, for pointing out this site, I didn't know it.