While not making any further judgements, I will say this:
Adjusting for inflation, somewhat, you should never purchase shu that is more expensive than about $30, unless you have money to throw away. Once you start going up there into the $40s or so, there starts to be competition from reasonably good sheng, and shu made from sheng-worthy materials, like what Nada made last year, or XZH Nannuo gongting at Houde.
There are a *ton* of good shu out there, and the difference between different good shu can be pretty narrow, unless we're talking lightly fermented stuff that's aged a good while. You just have to find it!
One of the things that interests me about Puerh, is just how much increased supply, overall, indirectly increases the prices of the higher quality in a peculiar dance of giffen/experience good dynamics. The more decent yiwu people have access to, the higher the price of the best yiwu. This phenomenon is even easier to see with Lao Banzhang. The first few were reasonably affordable in the early 2ks--even the XZH 05 and 06, with cakes on the front cover of glossy magazines were only $20-$30 more than other expensive cakes (but everyone thought they were soooo expensive because that $20 or $30 was double) until early 2007. Today, ChenShenHao LBZ, 500g from the 2011 harvest, is about $500, and everyone is selling mostly bad examples of pure LBZ for $200-$300.
Contrast this with the effort surrounding the promotion of Mansong tea as being from an elite grove. I don't really get the sense that it's taking in the sense of pure Giffen good demand dynamics. People have generally reacted in the sense that Mansong tea is great! So is this Guafengzhai I'm drinking now! There's no sense of focus or monomaniacal demand. Now, let's contrast again, with Bingdao and Xigui. People promoting these teas have had much more success, even though, practically speaking, the amount of supply is about equivalent or a bit more than Mansong. What is the difference? Bingdao is faked more. Much more. The fakes are marketed to specific consumer brackets at prices just beyond what is reasonable for them, for mini-Giffen tantalizing purposes. The supply creates its own demand, and the insecurity about whether it's fake or not inflates the prices of pure and mostly pure leaves. LBZ is grossly overpriced, but there is a kernel of truth in the sense that good LBZ is really, really, good. Bingdao, on the other hand (and Mansong, I suspect), is well down the list of "produces mindblowing tea". It might be hard to get a great LBZ, Yiwu, Jingmai, etc, but the best of these areas will generally crush the best from Bingdao. Therefore, the prices that people manage to get for Bingdao is a true marketing success. If Nada wants to make a lot of money from his stash of Man Nuo, then he needs to bribe people to fake Man Nuo, with some Bada Bings, of course, have a bunch of Taobao shops offer those "Man Nuos!!!!!11!", and coordinate that with a nicely targeted viral marketing campaign. Voilá! $250 a bing made with $30 leaves. Piracy in AV materials also mostly *helps* rather than *hurts* sales, in the sense that marketers can easily advertise value-added secure products (that pirates are unlikely to work to add, for free or cheap). It does hurt low-value materials such as bubble pop music or bodice rippers. And who really wants to drink Longyuanhao these days?
Supply creates its own demand, but not always in the way you expect it. Walk into a supermarket aisle, check out how the shampoo is organized. Not by active ingredients, or having all of one brand together, or anything sensible like that, but by shaping your intuition such that your heuristics, say, higher priced item is better than lower priced item, does not work as well as it should, AND that it's laborious to look for active ingredients, allergies?, serving size, total amounts, and all the other necessary information. If there was only a few, distinct, choices, you don't make purchasing errors, and you're not tempted to see if a similar product will do a better job. Bad for the store, easy for you to walk in and out with few impulse buys, and fewer errors. Of course, consumers have reacted, slowly, but surely, by turning to the Internet, and buying many things online, with fewer people trying to scam you with marketing schemes, and the 5 zillionth time of piped in Eye of the Tiger...