I only half agree. Part of the test is to try and "hear the money". But as stated there's a lot of variables. Strings being just one of them. I don't own an expensive acoustic. I've two that I bought because I liked the tone vs more expensive guitars, but I wouldn't say they were better guitars. Hopefully, with more expense comes better quality, lifespan, improving tone and even resale value. But tone is tone, however you get it.