>Depends on how long and frequently I intend to use the item.
This. Most hand tools (and all battery powered tools) are consumables when you get down to it.
As far as hand tools, things like wrenches just need to be made from quality materials and the manufacturing process is largely irrelevant, unless it fucks up the quality of the materials. Same with screwdrivers. I have screwdrivers that were handed down from my grandfather, to my father, to me, and they're still fine.
Sockets come and go, and even the best of them can be broken or stripped, so their quality is again largely irrelevant. But a ratchet, on the other hand, needs to have a good design, be made from quality materials, and have a good manufacturing process, or it's going to be destroyed the first time you try to use it.
You just have to know what it's important to spend money on and what's not. Brandfags are literally just unwitting (and unpaid) corporate shills, on par with those goofy assholes that wore sweatshirts that said ABERCROMBIE or TOMMY HILLFIGER in huge letters across the front in the 00s. Looking at the namefags here, who post pictures of their huge and largely unused name-brand tool collections, should tell you all that you need to know.