Immersion, I don't think you should insult somebody because their budget for equipment is lower. I don't want to discourage people from asking questions here if they are just starting out, or if they aren't able (or ready) to spend thousands of dollars per item.
When I started out, I used cheap Hosa cables, a Mackie 1202 mixer (which I still have, and use as a secondary mixer), and inexpensive ART compressor and multi-FX. I recorded everything to a portable Sony DAT, and monitored on Sony headphones that I still use about the half the time.
After that, I upgraded gradually, and in steps.
I have some more expensive pieces of gear in my studio, like Avalon 747 or Lexicon PCM91, but I also have some good and useful pieces of equipment that cost hundreds rather than thousands. I have gotten rid of some esoteric or extremely expensive gear (such as the Cranesong HEDD 192 AD/DA I had for a couple of years) because the high cost simply wasn't worth it.
Of course, if a device costs $4,000 everybody will be very impressed, and nobody would ever suggest that my choice in gear was "wrong," but lately I am more impressed with a solidly-made and reasonably-priced piece of equipment. Every place you save money, and find gear that will allow you to do what you want to accomplish and spend less money, saves money for something else.