@howard you are correct, many ways to get to the same place, some of it is preference, some of it is what we think we hear, and some is ‘feel’.
Certain genres/songs just sound better to my ears on one type of bass/pickup/preamp, etc.
Think about the average working or pro musician. They are not playing wildly differnet genres or music all the time like the hobbist might (unless they are in a wedding band, and then, well, does tone really matter / or perhaps a cover band but still…is the rest of the band really going to dial in to exact tones and so does the bassist dialing in matter).
To me its part of the hobby, for me…certainly doesn’t have to be part of it at all and is equally as good.